After finishing 11-5 and clinching a playoff berth in the 2016 NFL season, the New York Giants finally became relevant again for the first time since Super Bowl XLVI. Although the team only lost one defensive starter (Jonathan Hankins) and added offensive firepower in Evan Engram and Brandon Marshall, New York will have to be at their best in order to compile another winning season.
The Divisional Matchups
The Giants finished 4-2 within the division last year, and only lost by a combined seven points to the Redskins at home and the Eagles on the road. They also swept the No. 1 seed in the NFC if I remember. Crazy to say, but Philadelphia made some great moves this off-season with the signings of Alshon Jeffery and LeGarrette Blount. Paired up with a great offensive-line and a productive front seven, Philly can cause some havoc for the Giants on both sides of the ball. The Redskins are a little less worrying since there are questions on defense and within the management of that organization. Anything could happen between Dallas and New York, but the Giants defense matches up very well against Dak and company. The Cowboys revenge (in the words of Ringo Starr) won’t come easy.
On the Road Again
This is where the going gets tough and the tough gets going. New York has to travel to Oakland, Tampa Bay, Denver, Arizona and San Francisco. It’s important to note that NONE of those games follow each other. That’s right. The G-Men have to fly back to East Rutherford, N.J. after each of those games. The Buccaneers and Broncos games are the only matchups that occur before their Bye Week (Week 8). Head Coach Ben McAdoo will have to carefully plan out time management on these long and frequent trips, along with finding his guys some time to rest.
Not much needs to be said about Oakland. With a healthy Derek Carr and Khalil Mack manning the line of scrimmage, this might end up being the most difficult game of the season for the Giants. Denver still has a majority of their Super Bowl Champion defensive roster under contract. Von Miller could disrupt a game for any offensive lineman, let alone going up against Bobby Hart, Ereck Flowers or even D.J. Fluker. The Cardinals were a shell of their 2015 team last season, but the squad finished as the No. 2 ranked defense and the No. 9 ranked offense in the league, according to ESPN.com. The Buccaneers also have some great potential on offense and began to make some strides last season as a team. Desean Jackson finds a way to play against the Giants even when he leaves the division. The 49ers don’t appear to be too threatening, but you’d imagine they’ll be better than 2-14 under Kyle Shanahan and an upgraded defense.
Another cause for concern is the Giants’ play in road games last season. Besides Week 1 in Dallas (which is hardly a road game) and Week 17 in Washington, the Giants didn’t have a road win of much significance. They had flat performances against the Vikings, the Steelers, the Packers on two occasions, and even the Eagles in Week 16. This road stretch is more crucial than it appears.
The Safe Haven Games
Although New York faces some uncertainty on the road, they have a few home games that can easily tilt in their favor. Games against the Lions, Chargers, Rams and Chiefs are totally winnable and can all be controlled by Big Blue’s defensive front and secondary. The Giants beat the Lions and Rams last season, each game being dominated by Steve Spagnuolo’s bunch. Los Angeles and Kansas City won’t be easy wins, but home-field advantage can really make a difference against teams with sub-par offensive lines. The only real challenging non-divisional home game would be the Seattle Seahawks. The LOB is still alive and well and Russel Wilson’s scrambling could cause some fits. Beckham vs. Sherman Part 2 should be exciting.
So yes, the Giants do have a tough schedule, but when you’re a good team you have to beat, well, good teams. Doesn’t take a genius to figure that out. If they get into the postseason, they can easily become a Super Bowl contender with their dominance on defense and lightning receiving core. But first thing’s first, they must survive the 2017 regular season.
Come on Odell. Giants just picked up your 5th-year option and this is how you repay them? I know why, it’s because you’re too preoccupied with hanging out with Drake, dancing (constantly, the dancing never fucking stops with him) and now a new shoe deal with Nike. Don’t bother being on my team with that bullshit.
Nah, I’m just joking.
Is Odell wrong for not going to OTAs? Yes. They’re an organized team activity that’s voluntary, but it’s basically like a “you should just go” kind of thing. Eli’s been on the team since 2004 and he’s there. Same goes for Janoris Jenkins, who broke bank last season. Just because he’s Odell doesn’t mean he should get a free pass.
Now…on the contrary, some Giants fans are fucking crazy. And there’s two types of crazy we’re talking about. Old Giants fans, and young Giants fans.
Old Giants fans (noun)
Giants fans that support the team but are always just grumpy when they watch the game, so then they wait for something bad to happen, therefore they can have a reason to be pissed off. Also hate:
Players that get penalties
Players that are flashy, compared to an Eli Manning
So basically if you’re an old Giants fan, you have an issue with Odell Beckham Jr.
2. Young Giants fans (noun)
Giants fans that have a lot more passion for the team/games, but justify the actions for any player for their wrongdoings, even when they’re really wrong.
They usually spend 16 hours out of their day defending Odell’s actions.
It’s good to be somewhere in the middle on this scale. Bottom line is this. Is Odell a perfect person? No.
Is he the devil? I’d like to think not.
Okay so the guy missed OTAs, he doesn’t deserve to be burned at the stake. In games against the Ravens and the Cowboys, he put the team on his back by breaking routine slants to the endzone.
And he’s never created locker room issues. He’s not an issue to the team, but he can fix some things about himself, like anyone.
Johnny Manziel and Odell Beckham Jr. worked out together this week.
On May 23rd, Commissioner Roger Goodell and the NFL announced a few changes to the celebration rules. This included the lifted bans of group celebrations, using the ball as a prop and on-the-ground celebrations.
Let me start off by saying that I’m proud of the old wrinkly bastards that run the NFL for once in my life. It usually seems that they try to find ways to ruin the sport and make crucial decisions with little to no explanation. But this time, they backtracked on their awfully enforced rules.
It’s 2017, not 1948. I’m not even that “pro-celebration dances”, but I don’t get bothered by it either. It was clear that this fine was way out of bounds. What are they doing that’s so terrible in this picture? Did they become triggered when they saw Odell reach for his fake camera? Do they not like The Salsa?! These are the hard-hitting questions.
Roger Goodell also said, “Offensive demonstrations, celebrations that are prolonged and delay the game, and those directed at an opponent, will still be penalized,” according to ESPN.com.
So lets go over the new rules.
Sorry Antonio, twerking your ass in front of Redskins fans was also a fond memory for me.
But in all seriousness, the players are what bring in revenue for the league. People don’t turn on football games to see some old farts sitting in a booth. When I watch a football game, I want to see Rob Gronkowski stiff arm seven guys en route to the endzone. And if he wants to put on a show after the play, so be it.
Clearly the NFL had an epiphany in the middle of the night for some odd reason. Oh wait, it’s not an odd reason. They just figured that the more popular players become, the more popular the sport will become and that will of course lead to more money in their pocket.
I really don’t care what anyone says, no quarterback in the league makes this play. Defensive coordinator James Bettcher is thinking, “Fuck this. Let’s just bring seven so he can’t afford the extra time he always buys in the pocket.” And it pretty much worked.
He couldn’t sit in the pocket and wait for his receivers to get down field. He couldn’t get off an ideal loft to the endzone. But he fucking did it anyway. Off his back foot, he launched a 50-yard bomb and took a smack by Markus Golden right after.
Now, I love Tom Brady more than the average Giants fan. He’s the greatest football player ever. BUT, I’m still taking Aaron Rodgers over him if I were a GM or coach. Here’s why:
Rodgers is more accurate and has a better arm.
His play-making ability.
How he can pretty much make any throw from anywhere on the field.
Brady has the best coach in NFL history (not a knock on him, just the truth).
And Rodgers wins too.
I want to take this moment to give a nice, “Fuck you” to anyone that even attempted blaming Aaron Rodgers for the Packers 4-6 record. They were 4-2 and then it looked like I was cloned 11 times and placed at every position on their starting defense. They gave up an AVERAGE of 38 points per game in their losses to the Falcons, Colts (they lost that game at home, what the fuck??), Titans and Redskins.
Rodgers and the offense, that featured a NON-EXISTENT running game, a shifting offensive-line, and constant injured receiving-targets (Randall Cobb, Jared Cook, Ty Montgomery), averaged 26 points per game. He not only led them to six straight wins and a division title, Rodgers also bullied the New York Giants vaunted defense and beat the NFC’s No. 1 seed on the road (Dallas Cowboys). It was Rodgers world, and we were all just living in it.
Then in the NFC Championship, the defense went back to their old ways and gave up a fat 44-point burger on the Packers.
He’s an MVP candidate every season and has helped lead the most consistent team in the NFC over the past couple seasons.
Think about it, if Larry Fitzgerald didn’t crush their dreams in 2015, they would’ve made three consecutive NFC Championship games from 2014-2016.
Also, he’s just a cool guy too. Every time the media comes scrambling to him asking him why the Packers suck, he basically says, “Chill out, I’ll go win some games really quick, brb.”
It’s funny, because everyone knew some crazy shit was about to happen when they SPANKED the Seahawks on FOX: America’s Game of the Week during week 14. Seattle (8-3-1 at the time) was coming off a home blowout against the Panthers, and even though they lost Earl Thomas, many figured they would still give Rodgers some fits in the passing game. In the words of Donald Trump, “Wrong.”
That’s what Rodgers can do for you. One game, one quarter, one play can spark a run for any team he’s around.
That shit must be annoying for Bears, Lions and Vikings fans to endure, but it’s pretty fun to analyze.