All the rage in the NFC East right now is about the Dallas Cowboys; and for good reason with Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliot absolutely playing out of their skin right now. But there’s another NFC East powerhouse sliding under the radar with the 2nd best record in the entire NFC.
That’ll be the New York Giants who haven’t caught the eye of many pundits with their playing style, like someone like the Washington Redskins and their high-powered offence. But they’ve been getting the job done each and every week to get to 8 wins; even more than the Seattle Seahawks who many tip to be the only team close to Dallas’ standard. To get to this point their defence has been the driving force by restricting their opponents to no more than 20 points in 4 of the last 5 games; and it looks like they’re ready to kick on after a mass overhaul in the off-season. Olivier Vernon, one of the acquisitions has really acquitted himself well, after a big money (some may say too much money) move from Miami; and has record 6 sacks this season, 3 of which have come in the last 2 games. This has been much needed after finishing last in Sacks last season, and has helped the secondary infinitely.
To go along with Vernon, we can’t talk about the Giants defence without mentioning Landon Collins who has been a serious Defensive Player of the Year candidate at Safety for the Giants. He had high expectations after the Giants traded up in the second round to nab him back in 2015 and after a quiet year last year, he’s having a true breakout this time around. Most of you readers will remember him for his dramatic Pick 6 against the Rams at Twickenham; grabbing a pass that bounced off Tavon Austin’s hands and ran forever before getting into the end zone. He has been making plays like that all year with 5 interceptions all year. At a position where your tackles are most important, he’s adding to a usual safeties game by creating turnovers which can never be undervalued in the NFL.
The main knock on the Giants squad is that despite some star power on offence they can never seem to utilise it and really blow a team out on any given day. McAdoo’s playbook revolves around a lot of short/low-risk passes to guys to like Sterling Shepard who has been exceptionally reliable as a rookie; and controlling the ball for a long time. Obviously the big play with star player Odell Beckham Jr. isn’t completely abolished, but it’s featured less frequently than offences such as the Redskins. So this is all by design, all be a sometime frustrating design during the closer games this year. Also Big Blue has a tough run-in with 5 of the 6 teams remaining over .500; the other being the Eagles and divisional match-ups are never straight-forward no matter the record, so they’re by no means safe in the playoffs as losing 5 isn’t exactly a radical statement.
However, if they can pick up 2 wins the rest of the way it should secure their spot with potentially only the Redskins looking like they could get to double digit wins this season to overtake them from that point. People have been sleeping on them for a long time this season; but it’s time to wake up and pay attention, as the Giants could be ready to surprise a few people come January just like they’ve done before.
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