Last week's loss to the previously winless Niners inspired a new wave of flack, directed at one Janoris Jenkins, who was on the wrong side of two long, catch-and-run touchdowns. Jackrabbit's effort was called out on both blown plays.
On Thursday, he responded to, and shrugged off, his critics.
"People don't know football so they don't understand," Jenkins told reporters, per NJ.com. "They just go off of what they see. So I just go out there and play football every day."
Jenkins continued: "Played to the best of my ability. It wasn't lack of effort. I just think it was lack of technique and just staying focused ... The one when [Celek] broke the long one, I was really thinking to try to strip the ball. But it turned out the other way around. And the one where the running back stuck me out, I think my feet got caught up under me a little bit too much and I just reached with my left arm."
"They questioned one game? Question the other 36 games. Out of one? Question the other 36 games," Jenkins said. "Sometimes you ain't going to have the best game. Everybody knows that. One out of 36 games? I don't care what they say."
Jenkins' season is emblematic of the entire Giants' defense, and even the franchise as a whole. Coming off his best season, during which he skyrocketed through cornerback ranks and frustrated stars like Dez Bryant on his way to the postseason, Jenkins' productivity fell off in 2017. As New York's season quickly crumbled due to injury and ineffective play, the leaders in the secondary grew undisciplined. Eli Apple criticized the coaching staff. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie was suspended, as was Jenkins for two weeks. Once New York's anchor, the secondary has since become a lax sieve, most recently exemplified by Jenkins' missed tackles in Santa Clara.
The 1-8 Giants still have an opportunity to right the ship and salvage a lost season -- and maybe their coach's job -- with a resurgent second half. For Jenkins and the rest, the first step is forgetting past mistakes.
"If I do then it might happen this week," Jenkins added. "No, I don't regret them. It happened, baby. I can't take it back. It was the game. That's what happened. You're not going to play great every game. Just move forward."