Eli Manning recorded a near-perfect passer rating Sunday while Saquon Barkley rushed for 142 yards and scored three touchdowns as the New York Giants outlasted the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38-35 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
Manning completed 17 of 18 passes on the helpless Tampa Bay secondary for 231 yards and a pair of touchdowns, finishing with a 155.8 passer rating, only 2.5 points off a perfect score. Barkley ran for two scores and caught a touchdown pass as New York (3-7) won its second straight game.
Jameis Winston relieved an ineffective Ryan Fitzpatrick and completed 12 of 16 passes for 199 yards and two touchdowns in about a quarter and a half. But Winston also threw the game-clinching interception with 25 seconds left, the Buccaneers’ fourth of the day.
Fitzpatrick went 13 for 21 for 167 yards and three picks, his last one setting up Aldrick Rosas’ 52-yard field goal with 7:04 left in the third quarter that gave the Giants a 24-7 lead.
Winston’s heroics couldn’t save Tampa Bay (3-7) from losing for the seventh time in eight games, which might only turn up the heat on the seat of coach Dirk Koetter.
Manning found Barkley for a 6-yard touchdown pass just 3:18 into the game. New York upped the lead to 14-0 when Barkley ran 5 yards with 13:27 left in the first half, capping a 95-yard scoring march that used more than 6 1/2 minutes.
Fitzpatrick’s 1-yard sneak brought the Buccaneers within 14-7 with 4:56 left in the second quarter, but the Giants responded in the third quarter. Linebacker Alec Ogletree’s 15-yard interception return on the first play made it 21-7, and Rosas’ field goal signaled the day’s end for Fitzpatrick.
Mike Evans, who caught six passes for 120 yards and a touchdown, recovered Winston’s fumble in the end zone with 1:32 left in the period. That set the stage for a wild fourth quarter that saw the teams combined for 35 points.
Tampa Bay’s four interceptions lowered its NFL-worst turnover ratio to minus 23.
—Field Level Media