Oh boy. This is just getting harder and harder to write about as the Giants keep losing game after game. They lost an absolute heart breaker last week to the Philadelphia Eagles on a last second 61-yard field goal. Just unfair. They travel to Tampa this weekend to face the Buccaneers who are coming off of an ugly loss to a Case Keenum led Vikings team. I will be at the game this weekend, so I am hoping I did not travel from NY to Tampa for another disappointing game.
Keys to a Giants Victory
1. Build off the 4th quarter
The Giants scored 24 points in last week’s game against the Eagles. All of those points came in the final quarter. It looked like a completely different team out there, while every was on the same page. Eli Manning threw for three touchdowns with Odell Beckham hauling two of those in, Sterling Shepard hauled the other TD and had over 100 yards, and Brandon Marshall finally came alive. The Eagles secondary is not very good, but neither is the Buccaneers’ secondary. The Bucs are dead last in passing yards allowed per game. The Giants can thrive once again in this passing game if they replicate their formula from the 4th quarter of last week. They were throwing screens, slant routes and curls so Eli can get the ball out of his hands quickly and not take any sacks. This opening up the deep ball as well. The Giants have plenty of weapons on the offensive side and they just have to use them. Giving the ball to Beckham, Shepard and Evan Engram lets these wide receivers use their biggest asset, SPEED. The defensive backs then start to play press coverage and that is when Eli can hit his receivers on the deep pass. If they continue doing so, they can be very successful.
2. Continue to slow down opposing passing attacks
Another week, another team who is very one-dimensional. The Buccaneers will once again be without RB Doug Martin, who is serving the final game of his 3 game suspension. The Bucs will rely on Jacquizz Rodgers and Peyton Barber in the backfield. Neither of these running backs are anything to brag about. Therefore, the Bucs will rely heavily on Jameis Winston, Mike Evans, DeSean Jackson and company to beat the Giants through the air. The Giants have done a phenomenal job so far this season at stopping opposing pass attacks. The Giants are currently 6th in the league in passing yards allowed per game with 181 yards. They have shut down some big receivers already this year such as Dez Bryant, Golden Tate and Alshon Jeffery. Mike Evans will be their biggest test yet, but the Giants secondary is stacked and ready to go. Janoris Jenkins, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Landon Collins all have a PFF grade of 80+. They are always up for a challenge and I think the “NYPD” will shutdown another strong passing attack.
3. Stop the rush
As I mentioned in my point, the Buccaneers do not have a very good rushing attack. However, neither did the Eagles. In their first two games, the Eagles had 165 total rushing yards. However, last week against the Giants, the Eagles rush for 193 yards as a team. The Giants are currently dead last in football with 153.3 rushing yards allowed per game. They have had great success stop the pass, but have been terrible against the rush. They have to be a complete unit this Sunday if they want to beat the Buccaneers. Jacquizz Rodgers has had some big games and if the Giants cannot fix their rushing defense woes, he can be in line for another big game.
When it is all said and done, I just do not see Eli Manning letting this team fall to 0-4. They have not played well this season, but they are too talented on both sides of the ball to fall that far back. Only 5 teams, since 1980 have started 0-3 and made the playoffs. Can the Giants be number 6? It all starts this week. If they go to 0-4, they might as well tank for a high draft pick.
Prediction: Giants 28, Buccaneers 24