EAST RUTHERFORD (United States) (AFP) – The New York Giants notched their first win of the NFL season on Monday, minimizing their own mistakes and taking advantage of Minnesota’s miscues in a 23-7 win over the Vikings.
New York quarterback Eli Manning, who came into the contest leading the league in interceptions with 15, played without an interception for the first time this campaign.
He completing 23 of 39 attempts for 200 yards and a touchdown to finally get the Giants in the win column.
“It’s not about me, but I sure do feel good winning,” said Giants coach Tom Coughlin, whose team had opened the season with six straight defeats.
“It’s one of those ‘Oh, this is what it feels like.'”
Peyton Hillis, inked on Wednesday to bolster a Giants backfield depleted by injury, made his presence felt, running for one touchdown.
Hillis was picked up by the Giants after a neck injury to starting running back David Wilson and a hamstring injury to Brandon Jacobs.
The newly-acquired Josh Freeman — who joined the Vikings just a fortnight ago after being released by Tampa Bay — completed 20-of-53 for 190 yards with an interception in his first start for Minnesota, who fell to 1-5.
The Giants also kept Minnesota’s star running back Adrian Peterson in check.
Peterson, the reigning Most Valuable Player and 2,000-yard rusher last season, was held to 28 yards rushing.
The Vikings’ only score came when Marcus Sherels returned a punt 86 yards for a touchdown late in the first quarter.
But the Giants scored the final 20 points of the game, including Manning’s 24-yard touchdown pass to Rueben Randle in the second quarter and Hillis’s one-yard touchdown plunge — set up by Sherels’s fumble — in the third period.