Leonard Williams didn’t need to play. He is aware of many others in his scenario would have sat out, and nobody would have thought something of it.
He was compelled out of final week’s sport in opposition to the Chargers in Los Angeles with a triceps damage. The Giants have been 4-9 and headed nowhere. Williams is a longtime veteran and doesn’t have to show something to anybody. Why drive it and need to cope with the ache and a cumbersome brace on his proper elbow?
It was a official query.
“I agree,’’ Williams stated Sunday after beginning at defensive deal with within the Giants’ 21-6 loss to the Cowboys at MetLife Stadium. “I feel numerous gamers would in all probability sit out if they’d the identical factor. Folks’s brokers are in all probability telling them to take a seat out, coaches are in all probability not going to query you if you happen to sit out.’’
So, why play?
“I’m doing this extra for myself than something, extra for my teammates, as effectively,’’ Williams stated. “I feel me and my defensive position have a extremely tight group and I don’t need to depart them hanging on the market. I’m actually doing it for them and for myself, as effectively.’’
Williams did what he at all times does. This was his 109th sport and he has by no means missed a sport in his seven-year NFL profession.
“I’ll inform you what, Leo actually pushed by means of quite a bit,’’ coach Joe Decide stated. “Leo was hurting quite a bit this week and there have been numerous issues he was restricted in throughout follow. Our largest query with him was can he go on the market and shield himself, defend himself and play successfully. We knew it will be some ache, some limitations. He knew that himself.’’
Williams completed with three tackles and one quarterback hit. Nobody can ever accuse him of taking it straightforward after signing a three-year contract value $63 million.
“I simply take numerous delight in being a sturdy participant and being on the market with my teammates figuring out that they will depend on me to be there,’’ Williams stated.
One thing occurred to Saquon Barkley on this sport that has by no means occurred to him in his NFL profession: He misplaced the ball on a fumble. It occurred late within the second quarter when, on a 1-yard run, he bought the ball punched out of his grasp by DeMarcus Lawrence, with Carlos Watkins making the restoration for the Cowboys.
“I’ve bought to be higher myself,’’ Barkley stated. “Two-minute, having a fumble. Can’t have that occur. That’s unacceptable. You may’t have that occur in any respect.’’
The tip-of-first-half hijinks continued for the Giants. They got here into the sport having been outscored by a ridiculous 59-0 within the final two minutes of the primary half. They got here out of this sport with that comically one-sided margin at 65-0 after two Greg Zuerlein subject targets within the final 1:39 of the half, the second coming after Barkley’s turnover.
LB Lorenzo Carter had two sacks — the primary two of the season — and three quarterback hits. … RB/particular teamer Gary Brightwell left within the second quarter with a neck damage. … Cowboys LB Micah Parsons got here in because the runaway favourite to win the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Yr award, however he was not a lot of an element on this sport: One assisted deal with and one move defensed.