What We Saw: Week 9

The What We Saw team recaps the action from a wild Week 9

Giants @ Raiders

Final Score: Raiders 30, Giants 6

Writer: Jason Wolf (J_Wolf_Picks on Twitter)


The New York Giants’ season of misery continued in Week 9 as their season went from bad to nightmare status as Daniel Jones returned from injury for his first start since Week 5 only to leave the game in the second quarter after an unfortunate non-contact injury which is believed to be a torn ACL. The Giants lost their $40 million quarterback and the defense gave up 30 points to a struggling Raiders offense that hadn’t scored 20 all season, as the offense looked listless against a previously porous Raiders defense. For the Raiders, Rookie fourth-round draft pick Aidan O’Connell got his second career start and performed admirably, looking comfortable in leading his team to the easy win in the Raiders first post-McDaniels era game.


Three Up

  • Davante Adams – While Adams certainly didn’t stuff the stat sheet, his new starting QB Aidan O’Connell showed more willingness and ability to push the ball downfield than either Jimmy Garoppolo or Brian Hoyer. Not only is O’Connell more aggressive, but he did a much better job of getting Adams involved in the offense in the second half, showing promising signs in regard to his usage moving forward. Now would be a great time to trade for Davante in fantasy leagues as his schedule over the home stretch plus playoffs becomes very friendly after next week’s matchup with the Jets.
  • Saquon Barkley – Despite the Giants offense being an absolute dumpster fire, Saquon Barkley looked better than he has in a while. If I didn’t know any better I would say he’s at (or very near) full health. His top end speed and burst looked to be in top form, and he was shrugging off would-be tacklers left and right. Even though game scripts will figure to almost always be negative, Barkley is talented enough to be considered impervious to game-flow or stacked boxes.
  • Aidan O’Connell – Certifiably more than a preseason meme, the NFL’s version of AOC did not look out of place at all in his second career start. O’Connell was composed, confident, and predominantly accurate. He showed off some nice raw tools and has potential as a gunslinger-type starting QB. O’Connell could put up some decent numbers moving forward in games where the Raiders will have to keep up with solid offenses.

Three Down

  • All Giants receivers – It was already rough goings with Daniel Jones at the helm but Tommy DeVito does not appear to be much of an upgrade. I sincerely hope for the fantasy community’s sake that no one was relying on a New York Giants pass catcher to make an impact in their starting lineup at this point. But if you were holding out hope for Wan’Dale Robinson or Jalin Hyatt to return some value, now might be the time to move on from such delusions.
  • Daniel Jones – This might seem obvious considering he went down with what is to be believed a serious injury on a non-contact injury, however even when Jones was upright, he looked woeful. Clumsy footwork in the pocket, misfiring on routine throws, and couldn’t buy a deep shot to save his life: the Giants have a serious Daniel Jones problem on their hands.
  • NY Giants fans – I would be feeling pretty down if I was a fan of the team that’s paying $40 million annually for Daniel Jones to play (or not play) quarterback.


New York Giants




Daniel Jones: 4/9, 25 Yards | 2 Carries, 9 Yards

Daniel Jones played one quarter of football before suffering a non-contact injury to his right knee/leg, and boy was it an ugly one. His first throw of the game was an inaccurate overthrow to a wide open Saquon Barkley on what should have been an easy gain to open the drive. but instead fell incomplete. The very next pass he did a good job to escape the pocket and avoid being sacked but he made a terrible throw (displaying awful footwork while doing so) on the run for consecutive incompletions. Jones’ day, short as it was, was filled with accuracy issues and poor handling of pressure.


  • Displayed clumsy footwork in taking the sack that initially had him walking around limping. He could have avoided the sack entirely if he made the decision to take off earlier but waited too long and then panicked under pressure, running into his own guy and essentially sacking himself.
  • The very next play, Jones fell down to the ground on a routine dropback, ending his day and most likely his season as well.
  • Could not connect on a deep ball to save his life in this one.

Missed Opportunities

  • Not once but twice in the first quarter did Jones completely miss a streaking and wide open Jalin Hyatt for huge gains and/or potential touchdowns. Hyatt burned past the defense on two occasions but both times, Jones could not connect on the long ball. First time, Jones threw the ball too close to the sideline, forcing Hyatt to catch it out of bounds. On the second one, Jones just completely overthrew Hyatt; an impressive feat considering how fast he is.


Tommy DeVito: 15/20, 175 Yards, TD, 2 INT | 4 Carries, 17 Yards

Tommy DeVito looked much more comfortable and overall played much better this week than in the very limited action he saw last week against the Jets. While DeVito’s box score numbers won’t stun anyone, he was actually pretty solid all things considered. He completed 75% of his passes with a solid average of over 8.5 YPA, especially impressive considering the weapons he has at his disposal. While DeVito did throw two interceptions, one of them was not his fault at all as his receiver gave poor effort on a route, misplaying the ball and causing it to ricochet into a defender’s arms. DeVito flashed some nice mobility in escaping the pocket and picking up positive yards on his scrambles but it also held him back as a passer as too often he elected to leave the pocket when he still had time to operate.


  • DeVito’s first interception was a highly questionable decision and throw. Very unnecessary as it was a first down play with plenty of time to go in the half and allowed the Raiders another opportunity to score (which they capitalized on).
  • Escapes the pocket and uses mobility nicely to make plays on the run but his throwing on the run is inconsistent. Flashed the ability to do so but struggled to do it repeatedly.
  • Did not do a great job of decision making under pressure. Several times DeVito unnecessarily took a sack when he could have scrambled and gotten rid of the ball or just kept his eyes downfield to try and hit an open man.
  • Leaked out of the pocket too early at times. Had chances to step up in pocket and make throws to second/third levels but lacked the anticipation and trust in himself and his receivers to make those throws.


Running Back


Saquon Barkley: 16 Carries, 90 Yards | 4 Targets, 3 Receptions, 23 Yards

Saquon Barkley was the sole bright spot on offense for the Giants, as he had success on the ground all game; consistently chewing up yards and making life difficult for defenders trying to bring him down. Regardless of score or how obvious a running play was coming, Barkley was able to find success on the majority of his touches. He didn’t break off any monster plays but he also was rarely stuffed for TFL’s or unsuccessful runs. Barkley looked the healthiest and strongest he has all year on his way to over 100 yards from scrimmage as he routinely ran around, over, and through defenders.


  • Shrugged off initial contact like nothing, often needing multiple defenders to bring him down.
  • Looked great making cuts and juking in the backfield, making players miss on top of being hard to tackle.
  • Seems to have his burst back as he was consistently able to gain extra yards by beating defenders to the edge with his lateral speed.
  • Wasn’t as involved in the passing game on a day where the Giants were trailing all day. No excuse to not put the ball in your best player’s hands as often and as many ways as you can.


Matt Breida: 2 Carries, 5 Yards | 2 Targets, 1 Reception, 6 Yards


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Darius Slayton: 7 Targets, 4 Receptions, 59 Yards

Though Darius Slayton had the best day of the Giants receivers in the stat sheet, Slayton will probably be chewed out for his play against the Raiders. Not only did Slayton directly cause one of Tommy DeVito’s interceptions by not playing aggressively enough but he almost caused a second one when he sat on top of his route and waited for the ball to get to him instead of going to get it. Slayton was lucky that ball wasn’t picked off as it would have been two turnovers due to his lackadaisical play.


  • Racked up most of his stats in deep garbage time.
  • In theory he operates as the “#1” receiver in this offense but if and when Darren Waller comes back, his target share is likely to go down, especially after the poor effort he put in and how it cost his team today.


Jaylin Hyatt: 5 Targets, 2 Receptions, 19 Yards

The story of Jalin Hyatt’s week is starting to seem a bit repetitive. Nearly every week he burns opposing defensive backs deep multiple times a game but the Giants cannot seem to capitalize on Hyatt’s insane ability to take the top off the defense.


  • Hyatt’s speedster skillset makes the nature of his targets more difficult and as such he has by far the highest aDOT on the team so his numbers will probably always be somewhat inefficient.

Missed Opportunities

  • Hyatt’s entire day was a missed opportunity as he could have had over 100 yards and multiple touchdowns if Daniel Jones has even average-level accuracy.
  • As of now, Hyatt’s talents are being wasted and his presence on the team is a missed opportunity for Hyatt and NFL fans to see what he can really do. Hopefully the Giants can start scheming the ball into Hyatt’s hands more often in creative ways since they can’t connect on a deep shot.


Wan’Dale Robinson: 5 Targets, 4 Receptions, 35 Yards, TD, 1 Fumble (Recovered)

Wan’Dale Robinson scored the Giants’ only touchdown of the day when he found himself wide open on a corner post route in the endzone. He found the soft spot in the defense and camped out in the corner of the endzone for a couple seconds before O’Connell hit him for the score. Robinson did nearly all of his damage in garbage time (fourth quarter) when the game was way out of hand and the Raiders were playing a softer pass defense.


Daniel Bellinger: 3 Targets, 3 Receptions, 43 Yards

With Darren Waller out, Daniel Bellinger saw his largest workload of the season. As long as Waller is out, Bellinger will have increased opportunities and target share.


Parris Campbell: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 15 Yards


Las Vegas Raiders




Aidan O’Connell: 16/25, 209 Yards 

Making just his second career start, Aidan O’Connell was impressive. He showed off promising physical tools, solid accuracy and gave the Raiders plenty of reason to feel optimistic about their starting quarterback moving forward in the post-Josh McDaniels era. O’Connell looked decisive, comfortable, and confident commanding the offense and leading productive drive after productive drive.


  • O’Connell is not afraid to let it fly and take shots all over the field. He is a lot more aggressive (and better equipped to play as such) in his play than Jimmy G or old man Hoyer.
  • He has the physical tools to make all the throws but is definitely raw fundamentally and needs to improve in the cerebral aspects of the game to unlock his potential.
  • On multiple occasions he flashed his ability to zip throws into tight windows with nice anticipation and trust in his receivers/himself.
  • For better or worse, O’Connell does a good job of keeping his eyes upfield to make plays through the air rather than escape the pocket.
  • In fact, he didn’t look to make a play on the ground at all…he had zero rushing attempts in this game. Partly due to the lack of pressure hitting home from the Giants and partly due to his tendencies as a quarterback.
  • Started the game 8/9 for 129 yards but as the game went on, he missed a few routine throws that any starting level QB is expected to make nearly 100% of the time.
  • Did a good job of reading blitzes and recognizing when he needed to get the ball out of his hands quickly, as well as actually executing on said throws.
  • Displayed some impressive willingness to hang tough in the pocket to deliver a throw even if he knows a hit is coming.

Missed Opportunities

  • One of O’Connell’s worse misses on the day was when he had a streaking Jakobi Meyers open after gaining a step or two on his defender but he just slightly overthrew him. Could have potentially been a long touchdown but it fell incomplete instead.


Running Back


Josh Jacobs: 26 Carries, 98 Yards, 2 TD

Josh Jacobs once again acted as the focal point of the offense, chugging the offense along down the field with consistent gains regardless of down and distance. Jacobs’ efficiency on paper doesn’t come out of this game looking that great but the reality is that the Raiders were having success all day feeding him the ball and working off that success through the air. It felt like nearly every time Jacobs touched the ball, it was an automatic 4+ yards. A sub 4.0 YPC doesn’t look good on the surface but Jacobs saw many carries inside shortened field situations (redzone/goal-to-go) as the Raiders lived inside Giants territory, and he cashed in two touchdowns on three attempts inside the five yard line.


  • As always, Jacobs showed off his elite cut-and-go ability, effectively using jump cuts in the backfield to weave his way through the defense and pick up extra yards.
  • Constantly flashes his toughness. He was absolutely laid out on a carry and wasted no time in shooting back up and getting into the huddle, looking no worse for wear. Also had an exceptional carry where he displayed his power on a run where he kept his legs churning and pushed a pile of defenders forward for several extra yards after contact.
  • Didn’t see any work in the passing game as the protection gave O’Connell plenty of time to throw at all levels as well as the fact that O’Connell doesn’t appear to favor check-downs and dump-offs like Jimmy G did.
  • Raiders consistently give Jacobs first crack at cashing in goal-to-go situations (and they’re not afraid of giving him second looks at it too)


Ameer Abdullah: 2 Carries, 8 Yards | 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 17 Yards

Zamir White: 4 Carries, -2 Yards 


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Davante Adams:  7 Targets, 4 Receptions, 34 Yards

I guess it doesn’t matter who is throwing the ball for the Raiders because Davante Adams is still not seeing as many looks as he should be. Granted, the Raiders were already dominating the scoreboard before Adams got involved so they were clearly doing something right but they will need Adams locked in when they play tougher defenses. Adams did end up leading the team in targets but he didn’t see his first look until over 27 minutes of game time had passed. In the second half, O’Connell started peppering Adams with targets, especially when he was faced with man coverage.


  • Quality of a couple of his targets were poor, as they were of the “screw it, Davante somewhere down there” kind.
  • Still felt like Adams was playing second fiddle to Jakobi Meyers was operating as the team’s #1, especially when the game was still competitive.

Missed Opportunities

  • O’Connell laced a dime to Adams in between multiple defenders but as soon as he caught it, he was swarmed and hit instantaneously, dropping the ball for an incomplete. Adams usually makes that play but he couldn’t finish the catch through the contact for the 20 yard gain.


Jakobi Meyers: 1 Carry, 17 Yards, TD | 5 Targets, 2 Receptions, 38 Yards

Once again seemingly operating as the de facto #1 receiving weapon, Meyers was fed the ball in the first half where the Raiders did most of their damage. Meyers came out strong as he dominated the Raiders’ opening drive, coming down with a 24 yard reception before finishing the drive off by taking a jet sweep to the house for a 17 yard rushing touchdown. Meyers wasn’t asked to do much else after the first drive as the Raiders were in complete control of this one from start to finish.


  • Meyers’ release off the LOS on his first reception was exquisite, as he made an excellent move and left his defender in the dust.
  • Meyers showed off great acting skills on the jet sweep when he really sold his commitment to his run blocking assignment before sprinting to to the ball and taking it in for the score.

Missed Opportunities

  • O’Connell made a very nice throw under pressure and delivered the ball with great touch right to Meyers’ hands but he just couldn’t haul it in. Meyers had to jump to get it but it was certainly a catchable ball and a play which Meyers usually makes.


Hunter Renfrow:  3 Targets, 2 Receptions, 32 Yards

Though he only had two catches on three targets, it felt like Hunter Renfrow’s involvement in the offense was miles ahead of where it was under McDaniels. In two plays, new HC Antonio Pierce managed to use Renfrow more effectively than McDaniels had all year.


Tre Tucker: 1 Carry, 4 Yards | 3 Targets, 2 Receptions, 52 Yards

Raiders finally got more creative with getting the ball into Tre Tucker‘s hands. Tucker has absolutely crazy speed and the Raiders capitalized on his skills by drawing up plays which put Tucker in a position to operate in space.


  • Tucker had a 10/10 highlight-reel worthy grab when he made an over-the-shoulder, diving catch, fully laying out for it, securing the ball before falling down to the ground.


Michael Mayer: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 11 Yards

Michael Mayer wasn’t super involved on offense this week as he only saw two targets on the day, though he did look impressive on his first reception down the flat as he absorbed a tackle attempt and managed to stay in bounds, gaining a few extra yards after contact.


  • Figures to see more work in matchups where Raiders will need to keep up on offense.


Austin Hooper:  1 Target, 1 Reception, 10 Yards

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