Rapid Reaction: Colts 20, Giants 12

August, 18, 2013
8/18/13
10:24
PM ET
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. –- The New York Giants lost to the Indianapolis Colts but the injuries to Victor Cruz and David Baas were much more concerning.

What it means: The Giants had a first half to forget, but the only thing that matters is the health of two key offensive starters. Cruz and Baas both were injured on the opening drive of the game, but X-rays were negative for both. Cruz has a bruised heel and Baas had a sprained left knee, according to the team.

Offensively, the Giants stalled inside the Colts’ 10 three times and another time at the Colts' 12 in the first half. Defensively, the Giants gave up two passing touchdowns -- one on an unlucky play -- to Andrew Luck. Clearly, the Giants have work to do.

Injury scare: The Giants got a scare when Cruz had to leave the game for X-rays. It was unclear initially how Cruz injured his heel but he got tangled up on a deep pass attempt on the first drive with a Colts defender while drawing a pass interference.

The Giants cannot afford to lose a playmaker like Cruz, who was locked down to a six-year, $45.879 million contract before training camp. If Cruz has to miss any time, Rueben Randle will move into the starting lineup with Hakeem Nicks and the Giants will be forced to find somebody to replace Cruz in the slot (perhaps Jerrel Jernigan).

If Baas -- who had unspecified surgery during the offseason -- is out for a period of time, the Giants have some options at center. They can move left guard Kevin Boothe to center or go with backup Jim Cordle, who replaced Baas in the starting lineup.

Ugly half: Besides losing two starters to injuries, the Giants watched Andre Brown get stuffed on a fourth-and-1 at the Colts’ 7 on the first drive of the game.

On their second drive, the Giants had to settle for a field goal after getting down to the Colts’ 7 again. And on the team's third drive, Eli Manning was picked off by Greg Toler.

The Giants opened the second quarter with David Diehl giving up a sack to Erik Walden for a 13-yard loss. After a three-and-out, Manning marched the Giants down to the Colts’ 5 in hurry-up mode, Brown converting on a fourth-and-1 to get there. But the Giants had to settle for a field goal.

And on the last drive of the half, the Giants were facing a third-and-10 at the Colts’ 12 when referees hit head coach Tom Coughlin with an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. The Giants had to kick a field goal on the next play with only three seconds remaining, but Coughlin gave the officials an earful before going into the locker room at the half.

Giants unlucky: The secondary was a little unlucky facing Luck. On the Colts’ first touchdown, Aaron Ross had an interception in his hands, only to lose it and watch the ball fly right into Reggie Wayne’s hands for a touchdown.

Jayron Hosley also gave up an 18-yard touchdown pass to T.Y. Hilton. Hosley later redeemed himself with an interception and a 37-yard return off Matt Hasselbeck.

What’s next: The Giants will be reunited with the Jets for the third preseason game when the starters typically play their most snaps of the preseason.
Ohm Youngmisuk has covered the Giants, Jets and the NFL since 2006. Prior to that, he covered the Nets, Knicks and the NBA for nearly a decade. He joined ESPNNewYork.com after working at the New York Daily News for almost 12 years and is a graduate of Michigan State University.
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