Articles

Five things to watch for in Giants-Vikings game

 

This isn’t funny anymore. Just when you think it isn’t bad enough, the Giants keep doing their best to up the ante and play worse as the season progresses.

After Eli Manning threw for another three interceptions (one being a pick-6) in Chicago last Thursday, Giants fans are at the end of their rope with the season viewed to most as hopeless.

Well, that may be true, but that doesn’t mean the team can throw in the towel and quit. They got to play the games. Maybe they can win this Monday night game against Minnesota and gain some confidence. You then you go from there.

So, here are five things to look for:

Look for Eli Manning to possibly excel

Manning has real good chance to unload in this game, albeit, he still may throw a few picks (he still has yet to play a game this year without throwing a pick). However, the Vikings are an equally atrocious defense, especially defending the pass. The Vikings yield 308 passing yards per game (28th in the NFL) while also allowing 14 touchdowns through the air. Expect Manning to connect early and often with Victor Cruz, Hakeem Nicks and Rueben Randle. If there was ever a game for Manning to carry this team and get off the schneid, this would be it.

It’s vital Brandon Jacobs has another good game (or at the least play in the game)

While the recently signed Peyton Hillis may get some carries in this game, it is Jacobs who should be the bell cow in this contest. Jacobs is coming off a wonderful game against the Bears in which he looked like vintage Jacobs, barreling over would-be tacklers to the tune of 106 rushing yards and two scores. Again, balance is key to a diverse offense and for Manning to thrive, the run game has to be more like it was last week, this way it could open Manning to try some play-action passes. So, while Jacobs doesn’t have to rush for 100 yards, he can’t fall flat on his face either. First order of business, though, is will Jacobs play, as he is questionable with a hamstring injury.

Can the Giants rattle new Vikings quarterback Josh Freeman

How about this for a stat: new Vikings quarterback Josh Freeman has an even worse QB rating (59.3) than Manning (64), as they rank 34th and 33rd in the league respectively. With Freeman new to the Vikes’ offense, there should be a feeling out period and he could prove to be vulnerable in the pocket. If the Giants apply some pressure and throw some blitz packages at him, Freeman may just make a few mistakes. Freeman is no world beater and if the Giants are to win, they are going to have to get to him and get him off his rhythm.

Is there any way to stop, nay, contain Adrian Peterson?

To answer the above question, probably not. Peterson is perhaps the most dynamic and game-changing running back in the league and he is almost impossible to stop. Last week was a terrible time in Peterson’s life, as he had to endure the passing of his son to a grisly murder. We don’t know for sure where Peterson’s heart and head is at, but after a week, Peterson may be ready to get back to work. And how he does should be a thing to watch. But like I said before, if the Giants rattle Freeman and take him out of the game, well, then it may not matter what Peterson does in the run game.

Will there be any motivation and passion in the Giants?

The Giants must be tired of losing, right? With a very winnable game on tap, the Giants should come in prepared, execute the plays and get the job done. If not, then the Giants just might be on the Jadeveon Clowney watch from here on out. If the Giants can’t play with any fire against a very vulnerable and exploitable Vikings team, then the season is absolutely toast with no turning back. That said, I expect  a solid effort and the Giants first win on Monday night.