2016 NFL Season Preview: The New York Football Giants
Coming off a disappointing 2015 season, the Giants have many new faces; but are they enough?
Coach: After 12 years and 2 Super Bowl rings, the Giants bid Tom Coughlin farewell, replacing him with his offensive coordinator; Ben McAdoo. McAdoo came over from Green Bay a year prior and has lit a fire under Eli ever since his arrival. While I'll miss seeing Coughlin nearly dislocate his shoulder tossing the challenge flag on the coin toss; I'm excited to see what Ben McAdoo aka Benzel can do at the helms of the team.
Offense: Eli Manning aka 2Ringz just finished one of the best seasons of his career. He had a career high in QB rating, TD percentage, and TD passes under McAdoo's offense. With the added weapons he'll have to play with, I can see him being even better. I expect Odell to be, well...Odell and continue what's been a brilliant career by the numbers. He's legit great, but the question is his supporting cast. Victor Cruz is coming off multiple injuries that have kept him sidelined for the past 2 seasons. Making numerous appearances in Kith and exclusive Jordans have been his highlights as of late, but we all know what he's capable of when healthy. Sterling Shepard has the talent and potential to be the Robin that Odell's Batman has been in need of if he can adjust to the professional level as quick as OBJ did.
Larry Donnell is is probably playing for his future in New York blue this season. He's been nothing short of inconsistent, and at times frustrating to watch, but when he's good he's making a difference.
Our running game will continue to suffer as long as the offensive line plays like they bet against us. With that being said, I can see Rashad Jennings continuing to build on, or at the least maintain, last season's 863 yard performance. Shane Vereen can still open up the field with his ability to catch and take pressure off of Eli in screen pass situations. Bottom line, we go as the O Line allows us, and if they can't keep pressure off Eli or open lanes for the runners; keep the cognac close.
Defense: Big Blue saw some big additions to the team on the defensive side of the ball. Damon "Snacks" Harrison has always been a fierce run stopping monster. I look for him to fix our gap issues and keep runners from eating too much. Olivier Vernon is one of the more promising young players the league had to offer. I know preseason is "just preseason" but the pressure I saw him create on opposing QBs gave me a lot of hope.
Giants brought Janoris Jenkins on to help fill the starting CB spot after losing Prince Amukamara in free agency. Jenkins is a riverboat gambler on defense, but when he wins he wins big; I look for him and DRC to become a matchup problem for WRs this season.
Eli Apple, rookie from Ohio State, is a good cover corner from what I've seen in preseason. He has to cut down on the penalties at the pro level, but that comes with being disciplined and I believe that can and will be coached up.
My pick for breakout player this season is Landon Collins. He showed promise last year, but most of his good moments were overshadowed by mistakes too often. One thing is apparent, his talent isn't in question; it's more about his focus. I truly believe this season he'll show exactly why we traded up to get him in the second round last year.
Prediction: I know my Giants, and I know how we like to take out foot off the gas during games; so to predict a W-L record is complicated. We SHOULD win at least 10 games, based on the schedule we have, what we WILL do? That's up to our ability to close out games. Granted, this isn't the same old Coughlin regime that would damn near throw the game by design, but we're still the Giants.
10-6 is my final prediction because I have faith in McAdoo's system and leadership, as well as our talent. That could have very well been our record last season had we not blown so many easy opportunities. Either way, I'll be drunk. Holla.