All it took was one game for Beckham to make all the frustration go away.
"To be out this long and to have to deal with the adversity I have had, I just I have to thank God for giving me the opportunity to play and for allowing me to score in my first game," Beckham said after scoring. "It's just great to get that off your chest."
Manning said the scoring pass in the corner of the end zone was a route that the two had never practiced. Beckham made a double move and came back to catch the ball.
"I just saw it go up and I said: 'There is no way this is going to hit the ground,'" said Beckham, who finished with four catches for 44 yards.
"It's not anybody's fault but mine," he said. "It is my responsibility as the head coach, ultimately. And I will, and do, take responsibility for that. It is not about those players."
Ryan threw for 316 yards and a touchdown playing behind a banged-up offensive line that held up until the very end. Atlanta dropped its second straight since dominating Tampa Bay 56-14 on Sept. 18.
Beckham, the 12th pick overall, missed all of the preseason and the first four games of the regular season. In the third quarter Sunday, he finally made an impact.
After Smith's score, the Giants came back an 81-yard drive that featured Beckham drawing a 26-yard pass interference penalty against Robert Alford. Williams caught a 14-yard pass from Manning (19 of 30 for 200 yards) and ran for 11 before powering his way over from the 3 with 2:05 left in the third quarter to get the Giants within 20-17.
After the defense forced a three-and-out, the Giants took the lead with an 11-play, 64-yard drive that featured passes of 14 and 15 yards to Beckham, the last one a jumping catch in the corner of the end zone for a 24-20 lead.
"He is a guy who can change the complexion of our offense and wide receiving corps, and make us that much better," Cruz said. "It's big for us to get him back and going in the right direction."
Atlanta never threatened after Beckham's score, and Brown iced the game with his second and third field goals.
Julio Jones had eight catches for 88 yards in the half and finished with 11 for 105. He helped to set up two 20-yard field goals by Bryant and a 10-yard TD run by Jackson.
NOTES: Williams finished with 65 yards on 20 carries. New York gained 124 yards on 34 carries. The Falcons had 90 yards on 21 carries. ...Atlanta outgained New York 397-317. ...Safety Kemal Ishmael and linebackers Paul Worrilow and Prince Shembo each had 14 tackles for Atlanta. Giants linebacker Jacquian Williams had a team high 13. Giants LB Spencer Paysinger left the game with a hamstring injury.
Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press