NEW YORK GIANTS (+5.5) @ PHILADELPHIA EAGLES
Coming into this season, you would have been forgiven for thinking it was Albert Einstein himself at the helm of this Eagles team. Yet with all this talk of Chip the genius, it looked like it was his intellectually challenged twin running the team in the first few weeks.
They couldn’t run the ball, and they couldn’t throw it. They looked terrible. Big signings Sam Bradford, Demarco Murray and Ryan Matthews looked terrible on the way to losing three of their first four games. Last week might have been a get right game for this offense, as a terrible Saints defense allowed an explosion of points for this offense late as they stormed to a 39-10 victory.
Overall though, this offense still has it’s limitations, as nd Bradford still looks like he may hold this team back.
The saving grace for this team looks to be what is a very solid defense. Ranked 7th in Defensive DVOA, this defense has kept the team in games. Forcing 13 turnovers, only one less than league leaders Denver, this defense has saved this team from a few potentially embarrassing score lines.
The weakness for this defense is stopping the pass, and will be coming up against a Giants offense not lacking weapons in the passing game.
Pick your poison. This Giants offense may very well be one of the more underrated units in the league. Boasting a hell of a passing attack with a top 5 receiver in OBJ and a solid number two in Reuben Randle, a tight end that looks to be getting more looks after making a terrific game-winning catch last week in Larry Donnell, a solid running back by committee situation with Shane Vereen being a true x-factor, emphasized by a huge final drive in last weeks win.
With Eli playing the way he is at this moment, this may very well be one of the more potent offenses in the league.
People may be sleeping on how good this Giants defense has been. They sit 2nd in rushing yards allowed per game, conceding only 80.6 yards a game on the ground. Phenomenal when you consider they have played teams that are ground orientated. They are only allowing a league best 3.5 yards per carry, and are a good chance to shut down an inconsistent Philadelphia rushing attack. Like the Eagles, the issue for this team is through the air.
They are currently allowing 304 yards passing a game, worst in the league. Part of the issue is an inability to generate a pass rush, only logging 7 sacks this season. The question is do Philly test this team deep. Bradford has shown a tendency to throw short, which won’t let the Eagles exploit the biggest weakness of this Giants defense.
Key Play For The Giants
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. With Prince Amukumara out, and the Giants struggling big time through the air, Rodgers-Cromartie needs to be strong early, and ensure he doesn’t allow Bradford easy completions on him.
Key Play For The Eagles
Sam Bradford. Saved by a bunch of points late, there was a real sense he may be benched for Mark Sanchez after not one, but two red zone interceptions against the Saints. He has to be close to sitting, so this game may be do or die for the former number one overall pick.
He looks like he may be in a situation where his team can’t run the ball, which puts it on his shoulders. With a banged up Giants secondary, look for him to spread the ball, especially utilizing throws to the slot receiver, where the Giants have been especially poor in 2015.
Give me the points. I cannot understand why I am getting almost 6 points for betting on not only the significantly better team, but also one that is strong on the road. Don’t let last weeks game fool you, this Eagles team are a mess, whereas this Giants team is looking like a top four or five team in the NFC. The Eagles will be putting their hopes on Sam Bradford’s shoulders. Thats a problem.
EAGLES 20, GIANTS 31