The past two weeks of New York Giants football have been must-win situations, resulting in two straight losses.
The next two weeks will now be, “Can they survive?”
The New York Giants (0-3) visit the New Orleans Saints (2-1) on Sunday to start a two-game road trip. It’s the Saints’ home opener, delayed because of Hurricane Ida.
Last Sunday at MetLife Stadium, after ex-Giants quarterback Eli Manning had his number retired in a halftime ceremony, the Giants led 14-7 lead with 12:56 left. But New York's defense could not hang on to the lead.
The Atlanta Falcons tied the game with 4:16 remaining on a Lee Smith TD catch, and Younghoe Koo kicked a 40-yard field goal as time expired to lift the Falcons to a 17-14 road win, its first of the season.
Giants quarterback Daniel Jones completed 24-of-35 passes for 266 yards with no TDs or interceptions. Running back Saquon Barkley increased his workload with 16 carries, 51 yards and one TD and added six catches for 43 yards.
The Giants need more scoring drives and the defense has to tighten up in situations. They didn’t do it against the Washington Football Team on the road on Sept. 16, nor last Sunday.
New York’s upcoming schedule is brutal: at Dallas (Oct. 10), vs. Los Angeles Rams (Oct. 17), vs. Carolina (Oct. 24) and at Kansas City (Nov. 1).
Saints Coming Off Big Road Win
The Saints are coming off of an impressive 28-13 road victory at the New England Patriots, its first win there since Week 14 of the 1995 season.
Saints quarterback Jameis Winston completed 13-of-21 passes for just 128 yards with two TDs and no INTs. Running back Alvin Kamara totaled 118 yards of offense with 24 carries for 89 yards on the ground and three catches for 29 yards and one TD.
New Orleans enters Sunday’s matchup having won five of their last seven meetings against the Giants since Saints head coach Sean Payton was hired in 2006. The teams have met 30 times, with New York holding a 16-14 advantage. The Saints have posted a 9-4 record as the road team against the Giants, in three different stadiums. New Orleans seeks its second consecutive victory against the Giants after a 33-18 win at MetLife Stadium on Sept. 30, 2018.
Prediction: As much as I would like to give the Giants a shot with Jones stepping up his game the past few weeks, I just don’t see it happening. The Saints will be fired up to get back and deliver for its home crowd. Saints 37-21.
Winless Jets Face Titans
The New York Jets (0-3) are not only searching for any kind of positive thoughts entering their home contest against the resurgent Tennessee Titans (2-1), but are also looking for their first win of the season.
Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. at MetLife Stadium (CBS).
The Jets are 7-point underdogs to the Titans on most sportsbooks. About 71% of the wagering is on Tennessee.
Last Sunday, Jets rookie quarterback Zach Wilson — starting his third career game — completed 19-of-35 passes for 160 yards with no touchdowns, two interceptions and was sacked five times in a 26-0 road loss at the Denver Broncos. In his first three games, Wilson has two TDs and seven interceptions.
Wilson is the only Jets QB to be sacked four-plus times in each of his first three career starts since the league’s 1970 merger with the AFL.
Bottom line: Wilson is learning and needs some help from his surrounding cast.
Titans’ Henry Starting to Roll
The Titans used an 11-point fourth quarter to pull away from the Indianapolis Colts in a 25-16 home victory last Sunday.
Running back Derrick Henry had 28 carries for 113 yards (his second straight 100-yard rushing game) and had three catches for 31 yards to pace the Titans offense. The Titans are 20-0 when Henry has 24-plus touches in a game, including the playoffs.
Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill completed 18-of-27 passes for 197 yards with three touchdown tosses and two interceptions and the Titans defense limited the Colts to just 265 total yards.
Prediction: The Titans will methodically score what they need to and stop what they need to and pull away in the second half. This game is all about Wilson and to see if he can continue to progress during his rookie season, especially at home. He needs to have some receivers catch the ball and for the ground game to get going. We will see some spurts in this game from the Jets, but it won’t be enough. Titans 31-17.