Note, this is not a "Dey r unpossible" pessimism thread, this is simply asking the question "Can we beat them?" to which I think we can, but I'd like to go over how we match up with them, some strengths/weaknesses on both sides (from observation), and an overall opinion of what we need to do to get out of there with a win.
This is coming in place of my recap because, well, you saw what happened yesterday. It was a vicious beatdown in the first half, and a "Here, come feel better about yourselves" second half. We definitely one-upped the Jags game, if you ask me.
In any case, after the jump we'll look at the Giants and see if we can break this match up down a little.
(Dave does the specific, critical matchups later on in the week. I'll be more general)
First thing that comes to mind between the Falcons and the Giants is that they're very, very similar in nature. Both have above-average QBs, a power running game, and (at least for this year) their defenses haven't been a total wash, though advanced stats says NYG's D is pretty bad as of Week 15.
On offense, they don't appear to be a particularly huge running threat. They do better when both Jacobs and Bradshaw play in the same game, but it's nothing we haven't seen before. Jacobs is a big dude, but so is Turner. I'd actually give Turner the edge just from watching them both, but I don't know everything.
Their passing game seems to go through Victor Cruz now. If Grimes is 100% healthy, Cruz will be mostly shut down. I don't think Cruz is good enough to "get his" yet (Like a CJ/Fitzgerald-type), and he also benefits from being a good route runner. I'm not saying he's bad, but I don't think he's quite the mega star some people make him out to be. I think people don't play him correctly. Hakeem Nicks is nothing to scoff at, either, but neither he nor Cruz strike too much fear into my heart. Yes, Cruz is having a great season statistically, but I just don't see it, personally.
Eli's having a great season, throwing for nearly 5000 (!) yards with 29 TDs and 16 INTs.
To compare, Matty had 4100 yards with 29 TDs and only 12 INTs.
They both had similar completion percentages, though Eli only had a handful more completions than Matt and had 600+ more yards, mostly thanks to Cruz, I'm sure.
I think Grimes matches up extremely well with Cruz. Hell, Grimes went man up with Megatron and did pretty well, if I recall correctly. Cruz isn't very big, but he's pretty fast, which lets Grimetime do his thing.
Eli torched the Cowboys D. Why? First of all, I don't think they sacked him many times, but the thing I noticed most was how much man coverage they were running. Single deep safety looks (That one long Cruz TD was a failed angle by the single deep safety and a fail at man coverage). Believe it or not, what do we not do? Man coverage. That's right, folks, BVG does not do that, which limits the chances for a big play such as the ones the Cowboys allowed.
If Matt and Eli are similar (we may have to wade through our tears and come to this conclusion someday) then Eli will probably not win the game for them if we can get to him early and often. Their running game is not our running game, and their run defense is not the best. Michael Turner (thankfully) > Felix Jones/Sammy Morris.
We've been eaten by the Saints twice and the Packers once, and the Giants O is nowhere near either of those two teams, so long as we can keep the game in front of us. Brees and Rodgers can pretty much score at will, but Eli can't, and that's the key to this game.
We have long struggled against teams that crush our hearts by delivering repeated body blow after body blow, but the Giants are like us: if things start to go South, so do they. Disciplined football is the key here. We can't have false starts, we can't have drops.
We may fall behind early, but we mustn't give up. Eli is not mobile (Our arch nemesis) and can be taken down pretty easily. If everyone plays to their assignments (Keep Cruz in check, keep Nicks in check) then we can force Eli to force throws, which then leads to mistakes. Their tight ends do not scare me. Ballard and Pascoe are big dudes, but we have a fantastic LB corps more than capable of handling them.
They love to swing their fullback out of the backfield for a pass. Again, disciplined football will take care of this. We have good speed on our D and if one person snuffs out the play, so will the rest. Even slowing up the FB in the backfield can be the difference between a 3 yard gain and a 10 yard gain. And in this game, every inch counts.
On the flipside, one of the great things about this game is that we can score with them. I'll be honest here and say that I don't think we can score with the likes of the Packers and Saints (yet) but I know we can score with the Giants.
(Man, we are so bad against #1 WR, but so good against every other WR including TE/RB)
This is kinda more brief than I wanted it to be, but it's 5:15 in the morning and I haven't slept. I'll visit here throughout the afternoon and try to chat it up with some of you guys. What match ups are you guys looking forward to? Do you think I'm correct in saying that we can score with them? Anything else you'd like to bring up? I'm all ears!
Oh, and their pass rush is scary.