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Get ready New York Giants fans, because this is what we are going to see from this team in 2013. The Giants' 36-31 loss to the Dallas Cowboys exposed problems and weaknesses on both sides of the ball for the New York Giants.
Despite Eli Manning going 27/42 for 450 yards (4 TD/3 INTS), despite Victor Cruz having 3 TD receptions (5/118), despite Hakeem Nicks (5/114) and Rueben Randle (5/101) having outstanding games; the Giants' defense and running game was horrible.
David Wilson looked more like Mr. Wilson (Dennis the Menace) as he fumbled twice early in the game and never returned to action.
The Giants' DL managed to keep the Cowboys' running game under 100 yards (87), but provided no pressure on Tony Romo (only 2 sacks); which put extreme pressure on the Giants' linebackers and secondary in pass coverage.
Defensive coordinator Perry Fewell pulled out every defensive package and schemes he had in an attempt to make something happen, but the Giants simply do not have the players (defensively) who can dominate at this point.
Here’s a quick breakdown of what went wrong for the Giants in Week 1:
- Manning 27/45, 450 yards, 4 TDS/3 INTS (2 of the INTS not his fault)
- Cruz, Nicks, Randle combined for 3 TDS, 15 reps/333 yards
- Terrell Thomas (7 tackles), Webster (6 tackles) Rolle (5) Mundy (6)
- Josh Brown & Steve Weatherford kicking & punting well as usual
- 3/5 in the red zone
- OT Justin Pugh great job in his 1st NFL start
- Running game non-existent (50 net yards)
- Committing 6 turnovers
- Losing time of possession 37:10 to 22:50)
- Only 2 sacks and never putting constant pressure on Romo
- Secondary having 29 of the 62 tackles on defense
- Linebackers group not being a factor
- OL not controlling the line of scrimmage (especially in the running game)
As I mentioned in my opening sentence, this is what the 2013 Giants are: a high-powered offensive machine with a low grade defense. Eli Manning will most likely throw for well over 4,000 yards and compile well over 30 TD completions, Cruz, Nicks and Randle will strike fear in opposing secondary’s, however; the running game and the defense will be near the bottom of the league.
The New York Giants will only go as far as the offense can carry them; and you can bet that coach Coughlin will make the necessary adjustments to correct most of the flaws witnessed in Week 1: such as:
- Look for a veteran RB
- Stress ball control
- Focus on the running game
If the Giants expect to make the playoffs in 2013, they will have to improve on the defensive side of the ball somehow and also run the ball better. If not, this team will be watching the playoffs, instead of being in it.