Friday, December 2, 2011

Week 13: Green Bay at New York Giants

I really wish the Giants hadn't lost to the Saints on Monday night. At least not in such an embarrassing fashion. Now they're all angry and playing for pride and all that, and that makes me nervous. Let's take a look at some aspects of Sunday's game:

On the one hand: It looks like the Giants might be getting their leading rusher, Ahmad Bradshaw, back after a foot injury has kept him out of the last four games. 

On the other hand: It’s tough for a running back to just pick up where he left off several weeks before, especially considering that Bradshaw will not practice much this week. His coach has still not confirmed Bradshaw’s availability for Sunday. The Giants are ranked dead last in rushing yards on the season. Bradshaw has not had a spectacular season, averaging just under 63 yards per game, and has had only one game with more than 100 yards.

On the one hand:  Desmond Bishop and A.J. Hawk will both be sidelined for the game. Rookie D.J. Smith will handle the defensive calls.

Bishop is the team's leading tackler.
On the other hand:  Backups Brad Jones, Robert Francois, and Smith have played well when called upon. But this still sucks.

On the one hand: Giants’ linebacker Michael Boley also looks like he will return from a hamstring injury that has held him out the last two days. Justin Tuck, Antrel Rolle, Derrick Martin, and Victor Cruz all participated fully in practice after various injuries prevented them from full practices earlier in the week.

Justin Tuck is one of my fave non-Packers players. He's a beast!
On the other hand: Man, the Giants have a lot of injuries. It’s been reported that Osi Umenyiora will miss at least the next two games; receiver Mario Manningham looks unlikely to play with a knee injury; linebacker Mark Herzlich probably will not play; receiver Hakeem Nicks is dealing with a concussion and rib injuries. That’s not even counting all the players who have been and will be playing with other minor injuries.

On the one hand: The Giants’ pass rush has been very disappointing. Particularly on Monday night, they were unable to put any sort of pressure on Drew Brees.

The Giants' D might force Aaron to run more than he'd like.
On the other hand: They have Justin Tuck and Jason Pierre-Paul. This is the team that last year had a 9-sack first half against Chicago. The Packers’ offensive line has been good, but not great, giving up 27 sacks so far, and allowing way, way too many hits on Aaron Rodgers. Evan Dietrich-Smith played well against Detroit, but not having Josh Sitton in the lineup is a Big Deal.

On the one hand: Eli Manning is their quarterback.

I've always hated Eli.
On the other hand: True, but like my other archnemisis, Jay Cutler, Eli Manning has been having a very strong season. Manning has been averaging nearly 300 yards a game and, uncharacteristically, has only thrown 10 interceptions this season. The Packers’ defense has to get after Eli and rattle him. Under pressure, Eli will usually revert back to his old pick-throwing ways. He’ll especially have a rough time without Manningham and possibly Nicks.

On the one hand: The Giants are desperate. They’ve lost their last three, and Monday night was particularly embarrassing. Even their own coaches questioned their efforts. The Giants need this win to try to keep their playoff chances alive. It’s at the Meadowlands. Pretty much the whole season is on the line for these Giants.

On the other hand: The same could be said of last season’s game against the Giants. After their humiliation at the hands of DeSean Jackson and the Eagles the previous week, I thought they would come out blazing, but instead, they laid down in 45-17 slaughter. The Packers, this whole year, have seemed to have had a good mentality about not underestimating their opponents. They’ll be aware of the Giants’ position and won’t be caught sleeping.

On the one hand: Aaron Rodgers looks unstoppable. The fact that his past two weeks - 45/67, 608 yards, 5 TDs, 114.5 passer rating - seem pedestrian for him says all you need to know about the way he is playing. The Giants have a good pass rush, but Aaron’s better. And Eli simply cannot keep up with the Packers’ offense, should this game turn into the shootout.

And it's his birthday.
On the other hand: There is no other hand. He’s Aaron Rodgers.

1 comment:

  1. i like this post. Arod has no other hand. Just the throwing hand which is enough.
    Honestly, I have feared a loss several times this year. I fear one now. But I hope I continue to be wrong.
    Up to the Defense. Keep NYG under 25 and pack wins.