It’s week 9 of the NFL season and the 2-5 Washington Football Team will be facing a 1-7 Giants team at home in FedExField. The Giants are last in the divisional rankings and will be 2.5 point underdogs according to Vegas odds, but managed to beat Washington in their last matchup in Rutherford, NJ.
Much like Washington, the Giants are a team that underwent significant change last offseason after a disappointing season. The Giants feature a largely new coaching staff, with former Patriots Special Teams Coordinator Joe Judge acting as the new Head Coach. Jason Garrett (former Head Coach of the Dallas Cowboys) was brought in as Offensive Coordinator and his unit has struggled the most of the Giants units this year. Patrick Graham (former DC of the Dolphins and LB coach of the Patriots years earlier) was brought in as Defensive Coordinator and the defense has really started to gel together despite a rocky start and a lack of edge-rushing talent. Much like Washington, the Giants retained their previous Special Teams Coordinator Thomas McGaughey, who oversaw a unit that was a lone bright spot on the team last year. Though not as injured as the Cowboys or Eagles, the Giants will be missing players like RB Saquon Barkley, LB Lorenzo Carter, and 2nd round pick in this year’s draft S Xavier McKinney.
Normally, I would turn to Big Blue View’s Ed Valentine for this 5Qs. However, he didn’t respond to my emails this week. Thankfully, another Giants fan offered to do a Q&A on Reddit, which is the source for my answers.
1) Regardless of what the fan base thinks, has there been any indication from the coaching staff that Daniel Jones is at risk of either being benched or they’d draft a new QB?
Definitely not benched, it’s not like we have an option behind him that makes any sense for our future. The only way I can see him being benched is that he plays so horribly that they bench him towards the final games of the season.
There’s a very realistic chance he is replaced in the draft. Judge has shown that he is instilling a “next man up” culture so if Jones continues to show zero improvement they may move on. Jones is not tethered to Judge or the new GM (assuming we fire Gettleman) so if we have pick #2 for example we can absolutely go for a QB.
He has talent but his mistakes are killer, he’s the reason why we’re 1-7. If he cut down the turnovers we’d honestly have a winning record.
2) What kind of offensive scheme (Air Coryell, WCO, etc) are the Giants running? What kind of defensive scheme (4-3, 3-4, heavy zone or man coverage, etc) are the Giants running?
[On offense] We seem to switch between smash mouth type of football to a psuedo west coast type on offense. I think they originally wanted to focus on smash mouth football featuring Barkley.
Defense we run a base 3-4 that is very flexible with man blitzes and nickel-dime packages. It’s hard to say for sure but we seem to mix it up between man and zone coverages. Monday we seemed to play much more man but the week before a lot more zone.
3) Except for penalties, the Giants defense has looked quite good in games. How much of the credit goes to the DC and how much goes to the talent on the team? (I think it has more talented defensive players than people realize)
Patrick Graham (the DC) is a huge reason why the defense is miles better this year over last year. Much of the personnel is the same except for James Bradberry and Blake Martinez who were homerun signings this offseason. Kyler Fackrel, rotational OLB, has also been a solid signing as well. People want to meme him but Leonard Williams has been playing great this year as well.
The strength of our defense lies in our interior DL play with Leonard Williams, Dalvin Tomlinson and Dexter Lawrence. Biggest holes right now is likely CB2, coverage ILB and EDGE. We’ve been very bend but don’t break this year, and for the most part solid except for occasionally giving up big plays and failing to prevent 3rd downs.
4) Football Outsiders DVOA ranked the Giants special teams 17th in the NFL last year, but has them ranked 6th this year. What accounts for that improvement? Are Giants fans excited about their special teams, or do they ignore it like most fanbases without Justin Tucker?
Joe Judge was the Patriot’s special teams coordinator for years and they’ve always had a solid unit. We’ve brought in players specifically to be good at special teams like Nate Ebner from NE as well as Riley Dixon our punter. Graham Gano has been great at kicker as well. There’s a focus on our players being versatile so they can contribute on special teams like Jabril Peppers, who is our starting SS and special teams captain.
5) What’s your biggest concern entering this week’s game?
Daniel Jones shows continued regression in pocket awareness, staring down his receivers & protecting the football.
I’m worried that your stout DL will overcome our OL and either A) sack Jones and force a fumble or B) cause pressure on Jones to throw stupid throws where he can be picked by Fuller etc.
Bonus Q) How long until Gettleman gets fired?
Assuming we don’t will our way to the division title, he is probably gone by the end of the season.
As of right now, Vegas has Washington as 2.5 point favorites over the Giants. How would you bet?
This poll is closed
Washington wins by more than 2 points
Washington wins by 2 or fewer points
Giants wins outright
As of now, Vegas has the over/under for this game at 43 points. Which would you bet?
This poll is closed
43 or more total points are scored (both sides combined)
Fewer than 43 total points are scored (both sides combined)