Week 11 Preview: Eagles-Giants

November 18th, 2011 by Scott Dargis | Filed under Eagles, Football.

It’s fun to play what ifs with this Eagles team. What if they didn’t blow a seven point lead to the Bears in the fourth quarter in week nine? What if they didn’t blow another seven point fourth quarter lead to the Cardinals last week?

Well then this game would have been for first place in the NFC East. The Eagles would have been only one game behind the Giants and due to the division record tie breaker going into Sunday night. Instead Philadelphia is floundering at 3-6, Michael Vick is most likely out leaving the starting duties to Vince Young. There is a chance Jeremy Maclin might not play and who knows what to expect from DeSean Jackson. This is a team that is in turmoil and this is the game where the apocalypse unfolds.

Eagles Offense vs. Giants Defense

The Giants practiced all week preparing for Michael Vick, but he will not see the field on Sunday due to his broken ribs. This means of course the man who accidentally dubbed this team the “dream team” now will take the reigns under center. We haven’t seen very much of Vince Young, he was in long enough against Washington to throw an awful interception and was in last week just long enough to hand the ball off to McCoy.

Between struggling to learn the offense in the pre-season and missing some time due to injury it is hard to endorse a start from Young and expect the Eagles to move the football through the air. Their only chance for success is going to come from a balanced attack with a btd (big time dose) of Shady McCoy. These are his stats from his last three games against the G men.

Week 3 2011: 24 carries-128 yds, 5.3 ypa, 1 TD, 3 rec-13 yds

Week 15 2010: 10 carries-64 yds, 6.4 ypa, 4 rec-13 yds

Week 4 2010: 14 carries-111 yds, 7.9 ypa, 1 TD, 5 rec-29 yds

After receiving 30 carries against Dallas on Sunday night in week 8, Mccoy has only carried the ball a combined 31 times in the last two games. Are those two losses coincidental? Do the numbers lie?

In the fourth quarter of last week’s game he only carried the ball twice in the fourth quarter. We all saw how sluggish the Eagles offense moved at the end of that game. Yes the receivers did their share in dropping passes, but continuing to throw bad incomplete passes that kill drives is something this team cannot afford to repeat again. Is 20 carries a game really too much for the 22 year old from Pitt. I understand that you have to think about the future with how punishing this league can be, but if he ran the ball just six more times last week at the average of yards per attempt he would have gained 35 more yards. Think about how important that would have been in the fourth quarter in keeping drives alive.

It is impossible just to spot light what the Eagles have to do on offense because you have to keep a constant watch on the Giants pass rush. The trio of Justin Tuck, Jason Pierre-Paul, and Osi most likely will provide a dose of havoc to the Eagles make shift offensive line. This means that Young will have to get rid of the ball quickly, think about that equation. A starter turned backup quarterback, who hasn’t ran the offense for more than one series this season, has to make quick reads most likely without Maclin at his disposal. A true recipe for disaster.

Eagles Defense vs Giants Offense

The last time these two teams hooked up, Victor Cruz emerged as a formidable threat in the passing game. His first touchdown had an assist thanks to two blown tackles by the Eagles secondary. His second touchdown in that game was no fluke, he straight burned Nnamdi Asumougha and gave the Giants the lead for good. Since that game Jake Ballard has become more of a threat in the passing game, Mario Manningham has returned from injury and Hakeem Nicks is still one of the most dangerous receivers in the league. The only way that the defense is going to keep this one close is to force turnovers, much like they did in the Bears game.

Way back in week 3 Eli Manning played one of his most efficient games as a pro (16-for-23, 254 yds, 4 TDs). He is quietly having the best year of his career, currently he is on pace to finish with: .63 comp %, 4301 yds, 27 TDs, 13 INTs. There have only been two games this year (Chicago, San Fran), in which he was intercepted multiple times. We have been spoiled so much by the tremendous play of Aaron Rodgers that it is easy to forget about the kind of year that Manning is having.

It is easy to remember just how bad the Eagles, specifically the pass defense has been in crucial situations. This was supposed to be the shining part of the defense, the one that either closed out close games, or put them out of reach for opponents and yet it has done just the opposite. If John Skelton can throw for 315 including 145 in the closing quarter, think about what Manning can do with a hot offense that is steaming after a loss to the 49ers.

With Ahmad Bradshaw out, the Eagles run defense is going to get a steady dose the sixteen wheeler otherwise known as Brandon Jacobs. The Eagles did a relatively good job shutting him down back in week 3, but he was still able to find the endzone on a 44 yard pass play in which then starting middle linebacker Casey Matthews was left out to dry. Jacobs can be prone to fumbling the football on second contact.

Prediction

I really want to believe that this is going to be the week that Vince Young stuns the Philadelphia bubble and pulls this one off, but let’s just face the facts. The only way the Eagles have a chance in this one is if Shady and the combination of Ronnie Brown and Deon Lewis can control the clock and put the Eagles in scoring position. The Giants are by far the better team in this one and barring a total collapse I just don’t see how they lose this one. Give me the Giants 31-14 in a blowout.

What do you guys think is going to happen on Sunday night? Tweet me @scottdargis and tell me what you think.

 

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2 Responses to “Week 11 Preview: Eagles-Giants”

  1. ChrisLeo33 says:

    Well I am glad your prediction didn’t hold up on this one Scott. Though a very informed article and assessment.

  2. Garrett Reid says:

    my pops will pull it out! the only thing i’m blowing out is smoke