Written by: Tony “The Prophet” Yantosca
Well here we come to the end of the 2018 Giants campaign. Expectations were high early in the year. The bane of existence for a decade of Giants’ fans, Jerry Reese was fired. We had a new coach from a successful program. We got a familiar face for a GM in Gettleman. When the smoked cleared and by the time the Christmas presents were opened, it was another season of opportunity lost. It was another lost season for Eli who does not have many good ones left at all. The offensive line started out worse than last year and got better but still has a long way to go as a bottom ranked group. There are only 13 players left on the 2018 team from last year. That is an issue in itself because good teams have a level of cohesion from players working together over time.
The Giants failed to make the playoffs for 6 out of the last 7 years. They have a record of 47-64 since 2012. The malaise has continued. Barkley is truly a superior athlete. He needs 114 yards to get to 2000 scrimmage yards, a remarkable feat. He got 14 receptions alone in the last game against Dallas. Also he only needs 2 receptions to break the all-time reception record for a running back that currently stands at 88. However, the Gmen will need a quarterback as Eli is an expensive option. Herbert is not coming out. Do you get another stop-gap veteran until we can find our next franchise quarterback? For the record, I would have taken Darnold. You are not going to draft that high for a long time. You are not seeing his full potential yet because the Jets are a bad team and have limited skill players. You are starting to see him do much better at the end of the year. You can still get a running back later in the draft. Kamara and Hunt were 3rd round picks. Philip Lindsay who made the Pro Bowl and is 1st Team All Pro was undrafted!
Looking to last week’s game, the Giants ran out to a 14-0 lead. The Giants could not run the ball against the Colts’ front. We got the good Eli last Sunday who threw for 309 yards, 1 TD and ran another one in. Without OBJ, both Engram and Shepard had good games with 87 and 113 yards respectively.
I should have known better in my pick. The Giants play better on the road, and I should have called for a closer game. I called it Indy 31-16. The Giants are 7-1 against the spread on the road. The Colts came back and trailed by 2 scores twice. The key play of the game was a 3rd and 3 for the Giants at the Indy 9 yard line. Eli was blitzed and he managed to throw the ball away just before he would have been sacked. That was the only time in the red zone that the Giants did not come away with a touchdown out of 4 attempts. That play cost them the game. They settled for a field goal keeping the lead at 6 with 9:20 to play.
The Giants have been a bad 4th quarter team. The 4th quarter point differential is -50, 3rd most in the NFL. The Giants have allowed 147 points in the 4th quarter, the most in the NFL and have been outscored the last 4 games going into the Colts game 43 to 6! The Giants defense gets worn down in the 4th quarter. It lacks discipline and fundamental skills to make a difference. The rest was history losing 28-27 and in the long run helps them attain a higher draft pick.
Looking at this week’s game, I am going to consult cointoss.com. The Cowboys will be resting most of their starters and good players despite the protestations from Jerry Jones that the starters will play. They cannot change their playoff position at 4. We will see running backs Rod Smith and Alfred Morris, wide receiver, Michael Gallup and recently used tight end, Blake Jarwin, will definitely get targets in this game.
Eli plays his 29th game vs the Cowboys. Eli has 601 completions, 6553 yards and 50 touchdowns vs. the Cowboys which is the most any one quarterback has against a single team.
When the Giants have the ball, they would like to establish the run with Barkley. They could not run in the week 2 game. That’s when Barkley had 16 targets and 14 receptions for only 80 yards. If the good DB’s don’t play, Shepard and Engram should have another good week. In week 2 Dallas dominated the Giants 20 to 3 with 5:45 to go in the game. The Gmen got 10 late points to make the score look better.
The Giants should win this game with Dallas not trying but they play worse at home than on the road. So I’ll call this game, Giants 20 and Dallas 17. I can see it in that range, Giants 23-20, 24-20 or 21-17, right around the over/under.
Vegas was right. They gave the Giants a number of 6.5 wins for 2018. I thought they would win 7, and had a chance to win 8 when the schedule came out, but they have underachieved. It will be an offseason of many questions that will have to be addressed in the New Year. So far Gettleman, who has made some good moves, has made many others that have left me scratching my head.