New York Giants Notebook | Finishing Games, Daniel Jones' Future and More

Notable leftovers from the Giants' 25-23 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday
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Make it three blown leads in four weeks for the Giants.

Their latest fourth-quarter meltdown came in what was looking like a signature win for head coach Joe Judge against Tom Brady and the first-place Tampa Bay Buccaneers, blowing multiple leads and opportunities in a 25-23 primetime defeat.

The Giants held a multiple-possession lead in the first half and were even able to take a two-point advantage into the fourth quarter, but it's gotten to the point where it's inevitable at this point that the Giants will find any way possible to give the game away.

Still, as much as things didn't go the Giants' way late, they could have built a much bigger lead earlier in the game had they taken better advantage of their opportunities.

"To me, closing out the games starts at the opening kickoff," Judge said. "It's never one play that eliminates you in a game, it's the effect of different plays throughout the game that add up. We've got to make sure that we eliminate some things early in the game which would change the effects of the outcome late in the game."

And yet despite the frustration coming now on a weekly basis, Judge is still proud and confident in his team and believes they will have a lot to play for in the second half of the season.

"I love the way they keep on fighting," Judge said. "Look, we've just got to keep on moving ahead as a team, but I see us moving in the right direction."

Draft Positioning

The Giants' 1-7 record falls on the team as a collective, as Judge said. However, quarterback Daniel Jones does bear the brunt of the responsibility for where the Giants are at now.

Jones obviously holds the majority of the pressure as the team's starting quarterback, but it's not even like Jones is playing well either.

Jones has made a litany of costly mistakes at inopportune moments that have cost the Giants a chance to win, and those mistakes have directly resulted in the team's dismal standing.

If the Giants continue to plummet at their current rate, they might be in a position to select one of the top quarterbacks in the upcoming draft.

Jones certainly has a lot of work to do in the second half of the season to prevent that from happening and is doing his best to filter out those thoughts as he prepares for each game on a week-by-week basis.

"My focus is to prepare to win games, to play well and to improve week to week," Jones said. "That's my approach and that's not going to change week to week. I take that seriously. That's my job to play well. That's where my focus is."

Emptying The Playbook

The Giants put out a stout defensive effort against Brady on Monday night, especially in the first half, as they became the first team to hold the Buccaneers out of the end zone in the first half all season.

The Giants can credit some hot and creative strategies by defensive coordinator Patrick Graham, who may have caught Tampa Bay's offense off guard with a much larger variety of defensive formations and packages than in past weeks.

It was just the latest example of Graham's ingenuity with the Giants' defense this season. The unit has made a stark turnaround from last year's struggling defense thanks to Graham's strategies and the impact by newcomers like linebacker Blake Martinez.

"That's something that Pat (Graham) brought this week," Martinez said. "And understanding those aspects of it, going against a guy like Tom (Brady), we worked a lot this week making sure that we knew who was supposed to be out there whenever we had certain situations called, certain packages called.

"And I think overall, substitutions and those kinds of things helped a lot trying to disguise certain looks."