N.Y. Giants at San Francisco (-5)
This is our Game of the Week on CHFF TV.
These are not your big brother’s Giants, the team we picture winning with an overwhelming pass rush and some clutch play from Eli Manning.
Instead, this is totally an offensive team in 2012, behind the great play of Eli. The Giants are No. 1 (tied) on the Offensive Hog Index and No. 1 Real Passing YPA (7.57); conversely, they are No. 25 run defense (4.53 YPA) and No. 31 Defensive Pass YPA (8.02).
The 49ers, meanwhile, are a powerhouse on both sides of the ball, a fact we chronicled in great detail this week on SI.com.
The short version: the 49ers are No. 1 on Offensive Passer Rating, Real QB Rating and the Relativity Index, and on pace to field the greatest rushing offense in history (6.08 YPA) – while fresh off arguably the greatest offensive performance in history, the first team to both rush and pass for more than 300 yards in the same game.
With all that said, the Giants are easily the best team the 49ers have faced with the exception of the Vikings – the club that handed San Francisco it’s only loss.
New York’s biggest problem is its volatility. We don’t know if we’re going to get the team that hangs 41 on the Bucs and Browns, or the team that fumbles and bumbles against the likes the Cowboys and Eagles.
But we do know the Giants a battle-tested big game club and will come to play in one of the premier showdowns of 2012, a rematch of the NFC title game they won last season in San Francisco. Big Game Eli Manning will keep this one close to the end.
Meanwhile, the 49ers have been an ATS powershouse under Jim Harbaugh. But history tells us they are bound to take a step back to earth -- a regression to the mean, as the stat-heads call it -- after two absolutely dominating victories over the past two weeks.
Pick: San Francisco 27, N.Y. Giants 23