Projected Record: 10-6
NFC East Rank: Tied with Redskins for 1st
Although, they won it all two years ago, Jerry Reese has put his team on notice. He wants them to be the first team in history to play in their hometown for the Super Bowl. They haven’t made the playoffs three of the last four seasons. He’s apparently placed a clock in the Giants’ locker room that’s counting down to February 2nd. The Giants have a recent history of gaining momentum towards the end of the season. For Giants fans, this can be both exhilarating and worrisome. In 2011, the Giants were required to win the final two regular season games in order to play into the postseason. Additionally, nobody can forget the 2007 season with its roller coaster lows and highs, finally beating the only team ever to go 16-0.
Their overall defense was very poor last season ranking 28th in pass defense and 25th in run defense. During this offseason, the G-Men added defensive tackles Cullen Jenkins and Mike Patterson, who will definitely aid in defending the rushing game. These big bodies in the middle of the defensive line will block some rushing lanes that caused havoc all of last season. Last year, the Giants’ defensive ends had poor showings and will hopefully return to their old selves next year. The Giants ranked 22nd in sacks last season, but were 3rd the season before, the year they won the Super Bowl. Osi Umenyiora left to play for the Atlanta Falcons this offseason and Justin Tuck severely underperformed this past season. If Jason Pierre-Paul and Justin Tuck can perform at an optimal level this season, the defense will be a force to be reckoned with.
Although the offense and its production is contingent upon Eli Manning, the addition of Justin Pugh in this year’s draft will bolster a decimated offensive line. David Diehl will be off the field for the next six weeks and Pugh could substitute well in at tackle for Diehl. Ahmad Bradshaw left for the Indianapolis Colts, but they have a dynamic combination with a young RB in David Wilson and an experienced Andre Brown. In the passing game, Victor Cruz will provide consistent yards along with receptions each week and the Giants are hoping that Hakeem Nicks can stay healthy. If he does, they have much potential with the deep ball and another end zone threat for Manning.
The Giants finished last season 9-7 barely missing the playoffs. Under Head Coach Tom Coughlin and Eli Manning, the Giants traditionally do extraordinarily well in the first half of the season, but fail to maintain their consistency during the latter part of the season. Last year, they went 6-2 at the beginning of the season. In order for them not to falter towards the end of the season, they must rely on the defensive line since the secondary won’t make too much of an impact without any key players or additions. Ultimately though, the majority of games will be won by the offensive output put forth by Eli Manning and his receivers.