September 22, 2019 / 11:54 PM / 25 days ago

Jones sparkles in first start as Giants edge Bucs

Rookie quarterback Daniel Jones led the Saquon Barkley-less Giants on a game-winning drive in the final two minutes in his first career start to defeat the host Tampa Bay Buccaneers 32-31 on Sunday.

Sep 22, 2019; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) looks on prior to the game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the New York Giants at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Gay missed a 34-yard field goal as time expired to seal the victory for New York (1-2).

Jones completed 23 of 36 passes for 336 yards and two touchdowns. He was 5 of 7 on the go-ahead drive that covered 75 yards and ended with his 7-yard rushing score with 1:16 remaining to put the Giants up for the first time all day.

Jones was the team’s leading rusher with 28 yards and two rushing touchdowns.

Barkley, who hurt his ankle in the second quarter when tackled awkwardly by Mike Edwards, had to be helped off the field. The running back — who had eight carries for 10 yards — was later seen on the sidelines with a walking boot and using crutches.

Buccaneers receiver Mike Evans had eight catches for 190 yards and three touchdowns.

Tampa Bay (1-2) scored on each of its six possessions — three touchdowns and three field goals — in the first half. Jameis Winston led the Buccaneers 75 yards on each of the first two drives, finding Evans for a 21-yard touchdown and then a 3-yard touchdown.

However, Gay missed the first PAT and had the second blocked, so Tampa Bay ended the first quarter with 12 points. Aldrick Rosas hit a 36-yard field goal in the period for the Giants.

Jones scored his first rushing touchdown on a 7-yard scamper in the second quarter. Tampa Bay responded with three field goals and another Winston-to-Evans touchdown to go up 28-10 at the half.

The Giants offense started the second half with a bang. On the first play, Jones found Evan Engram, who evaded a tackler around the 40-yard line and ran along the sideline into the end zone for a 75-yard touchdown. New York converted a two-point try.

After forcing a punt, Jones drove New York down the field again and found Sterling Shepard for a 7-yard touchdown pass to cut the lead to 28-25.

In the fourth quarter, Jones fumbled on a sack by Shaq Barrett, and Gay later connected on a 23-yard field goal for a 31-25 Tampa Bay lead.

Winston finished 23 of 37 for 380 yards, with three touchdowns and an interception.

—Field Level Media

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