The Giants come into week eight with a 6-1 record and are fueled by being the underdogs of the NFL. They continue to be doubted and are looking to pull off another upset against the rising Seahawks on the road.
The New York Giants currently have the second best record in the NFL at 6-1. They’ve beaten multiple preseason contenders such as the Titans, Packers and Ravens. Running Back Saquon Barkley has looked like an MVP candidate this season as he leads the league in scrimmage yards by almost 100 yards.
The team has only allowed around 18 points per game, which is 6th in the NFL, and the defense is thriving under Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale. With all of that said, they’ve been underdogs in every game but one so far this season.
That fact remains the same as they travel to Seattle to play the Seahawks, who are currently three point favorites. Like the Giants, the Seahawks have been one of the surprises of the NFL season as they’ve started the year 4-3.
Seahawks Quarterback Geno Smith is playing the best football of his career and has turned this team around after they traded Russell Wilson to the Broncos during the offseason. They have a young stud at the running back position in Kenneth Walker III and have a young secondary on defense that is playing at a high level. They can’t take Seattle lightly if they want to get to 7-1 so here are the three things you should be watching out for on Sunday.
1. The Aggressiveness Of Brian Daboll And Mike Kafka On Offense
The Giants on offense have liked to play it safe as they haven’t taken too many deep shots in the passing game but when they do, it’s done at the right time. This strays away from Offensive Coordinator Mike Kafka’s previous destination when he was the QB Coach for the Chiefs. Kafka has done a good job at allowing QB Daniel Jones to get in a rhythm on offense and take what the defense gives him. Whether it’s passing for small chunks or running the ball himself which has been a big success so far, Jones has flourished.
The Giants this week face one of the best young secondaries in the NFL. Rookie Cornerbacks Tariq Woolen and Coby Bryant have proven to be solid picks as they’ve already contributed in a big way. Woolen is actually tied for the league-lead in interceptions so far this season with four. He’s a ball-hawk who Daniel Jones has to keep an eye on. Giants Head Coach Brian Daboll and Mike Kafka have to be conservative in their offensive game plan in order to move the ball. If the Giants go into Sunday’s game with the idea of big passing plays, the game might get out of hand quickly.
2. The Giants Tight End Plans Without Daniel Bellinger
The Giants head into Week 8 without their best tight end on their roster as Daniel Bellinger is out indefinitely with an eye injury he suffered last week against the Jaguars. It was a nasty injury that required Bellinger to go to the hospital for further examination but he was back with the team on the flight home. Bellinger underwent successful surgery today to correct fractures on the lower window of his eye socket and to correct damage to his septum, per source. He hopes to return in 2-6 weeks, but separate source says 4-6 weeks could be more reasonable. However, It’s a major blow to the team who were just integrating him more and more into the offense.
Now, the Giants need another tight end to step up which has to be either Tanner Hudson or Chris Myarick. The Seahawks are amongst the worst in the league so far this season defending tight ends. They’ve given up 537 yards along with four touchdowns to the position so it has to be apart of their gameplan to attack that weakness. Hudson and Myarick have to play at their best in order to capitalize on their opportunities because they can always find someone in free agency to fill that void until Bellinger comes back.
3. How The Defense Attacks Seahawks QB Geno Smith
The biggest quarterback surprise in the entire NFL is how well Geno Smith is playing after taking over for Russell Wilson as the main guy for the Seahawks. He’s been playing at a really good level and has led Seattle to wins over the Chargers, Broncos and Cardinals. Smith is currently third in the NFL in passer rating and seventh in the league in passing yards. It’s a big jump from a guy who’s been a backup for the majority of his career.
The Giants not only have to worry about Smith on Sunday, the Seahawks also have a talented rookie running back named Kenneth Walker III who looks like the real deal. In his last three games, Walker has rushed for a total of 352 yards and four touchdowns. He’s been a problem for defenses the last month and Giants Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale will have his hands full Sunday.
Seahawks WR DK Metcalf is questionable for Sunday’s game which is huge because if he isn’t playing, that takes away a major threat on that offense. Regardless, look for the defense to continue to blitz and put pressure on the Seahawks two rookie starting offensive tackles.
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