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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The New York Giants can't seem to finish, not even against one of the NFL's worst teams.
The Giants faltered down the stretch for the fourth consecutive week. This one resulted in a 25-24 loss at Jacksonville that turned out to be the Jaguars' biggest come-from-behind victory in franchise history.
The Jaguars (2-10) ended a four-game losing streak and dealt the Giants (3-9) a seventh consecutive loss that could raise more questions about the future of New York Giants coach Tom Coughlin.
"It's a loss that we feel we should have won," Coughlin said. "We've done this too many times. We just helped somebody beat us. Instead of forcing them to beat us, we helped them. ... I'm upset with everything. And I'm upset with me. I start with me."
The Giants dominated the first half, scoring 21 points in the second quarter and looking like they would notch their first victory since early October.
But Jacksonville and New York played like different teams after the break.
Linebacker Geno Hayes forced Eli Manning to fumble early in the third, and teammate J.T. Thomas recovered in the end zone. The Jaguars forced another turnover in the fourth when rookie cornerback Aaron Colvin returned Larry Donnell's fumble 41 yards for a score and a 22-21 lead.
"We have to find a way to finish games and get wins," Giants linebacker Devon Kennard said. "It's not like we don't have a talented group and not hungry for a win. There are close games coming down to the last drive and we are just not finishing. We have to find a way to finish games and get wins."
It's been a recurring theme for the Giants this season.
They were tied at 17 heading into the fourth quarter at Seattle three weeks ago before losing by 21. They trailed 16-10 late in the fourth the following week against San Francisco and had first-and-goal at the 4-yard line before Manning threw an interception in the end zone.
Last week's loss was equally tough to swallow. The Giants went ahead 28-24 with three minutes remaining, but then allowed an 80-yard touchdown drive.
Coughlin challenged his players to start closing out games.
They responded with another late-game meltdown.
"We're going to stay together no matter what," defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul said. "It's a very tough loss. We made big mistakes that cost us. We're going to finish this season strong."
Injuries were a factor in the latest loss.
Right tackle Geoff Schwartz, playing in place of starter Justin Pugh, injured his left ankle and left on a cart. His replacement, James Brewer, also left the game with a concussion. Running back Rashad Jennings sat out most of the fourth quarter with an ankle injury. The Giants managed just 75 yards in the second half.
Linebacker Terrell Manning (ankle) and defensive end Robert Ayers (pectoral) also left the game.
Despite their absences, the Giants allowed just 258 yards and recorded a season-high seven sacks.
But the defense failed to make a stop when it counted. Blake Bortles drove the Jags 55 yards to set up Josh Scobee's 43-yard game winner. Bortles completed four passes and hurt New York with identical keepers for 11 and 20 yards.
The Giants had one final chance to win, but Manning fumbled on first down.
"It's frustrating and I don't know an English word to explain the way we feel," said Jennings, who ran 26 times for 91 yards. "We have too much talent on this team so we should be held to a higher standard. We came out in the second half and we were just flat, and that's not us."
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