Written by: Tony “The Prophet” Yantosca
The Giants acquitted themselves well vs the Jaguars with everything considered. They had to work out the preseason rust as the starters play very little in these meaningless games. They were never really out of this game. OBJ is back to normal form with 11 catches for 111 yards. However the Jaguars D with Ramsey kept him out of the end zone. Barkley came as advertised with 106 yards and a sparkling 68 yard run for a touchdown. He had 5.9 yards/carry, which is excellent. I think what we saw from Barkley will be typical. He will have shorter runs and then a long scamper that will help the average. We saw that at Penn State also. The Jags D with maybe the best linebacker corps in the league kept Engram along with the safeties to 2 catches for 18 yards. We had the obligatory Eli pick. This one hurt as Myles Jack, one of the best LB’s in the league, took the pick to the house. It was actually the difference in the game.
The Giants defense did a good job or Bortles. They kept him to just 176, 1 TD and a pick. They did give up over 130 rushing yards. They caught a break when Fournette left the game with an injury. Bortles did run for a 41 yard rushing gain. The D needs to watch that going forward.
They were able to hang with a superior team that has the best defense in the league. The Gmen won the time of possession battle slightly at 30:29. The third down efficiency was bad for both teams at 30%. The right side of the OL is a mess. They may have to go to 12 personnel to help chip the pass rush from that side. The opposition will no doubt overload that side until the Giants can prove otherwise. The good thing is that Eli was only sacked twice. He has become more adept in his later years of getting rid of the ball quickly.
Even though it was a loss as I predicted there were encouraging signs for a team with a new coach that will get better through the season. So through week 1 the glass is half full not empty, as they go on a gauntlet of games starting in week 3.
Looking to this week’s game, it is the usual early season Sunday night tussle at the Cowboys. It usually is week 1 to kick off Sunday night football. It is hard to believe it has been a decade since the Giants were in the inaugural game for the new AT&T stadium. Eli had a late drive in a close game to get them to a long field goal attempt for Tynes who kicked it through for a 33-31 win. The Giants ruined the opening game of “Jerry’s World”. Eli commemorated the occasion by autographing the wall inside the stadium with the score.
Carolina kept Dallas in check last week with only 170 yards passing, 94 yards rushing and 8 points. I think the Giants will run with the same plan. They will crowd the box with at least 7 players and dare Dak to throw. The Cowboys don’t have a real #1 X wide out. They have a bunch of #2’s, #3’s and #4 WR’s. Snacks and crew will be tasked with stopping Elliott.
When the Giants have the ball, I think they can go with a balanced attack. They can run Barkley to set up the play action. Eli should have some time with Lawrence and Gregory questionable and Irving suspended. OBJ, Barkley and Shepard should have good days. However, The Dallas D did hold Cam to 160 yards passing. This looks to be a lower scoring game and Vegas agrees. They do their homework as Dallas has gone under the past 5 games and the Giants have gone under 7 out of 8. Remember they couldn’t score over 20. They have the over/under at 42.5 which is the lowest on the board for week 2. This may not be a fantasy bonanza except the few top performers.
So with that information, I am predicting this as a win for the Giants 24 to 17. They are the better team right now and it really is a must game as crazy as that sounds. Teams that start 0-2 only have a 12% chance to make the playoffs. Also the Giants schedule gets tough again for the next 5 weeks.