Matt: New York Football Giants 24, Lions 17
The Giants defensive line never quits so it could shape up to be a long day for Shaun Hill. They’ll have to rely on screens and quick routes if they want to have success in the passing game. As always, the success of the Detroit defense will come from the front four. If they can maintain pressure and force mistakes, they may stay in the game. Eli Manning will look to attack the Detroit secondary, and he can’t be afforded time to look down the field. As it is, the Giants look better on both sides of the football; I’d be surprised if the Lions come away with this one.
Latif: Obviously this week’s matchup against the Giants is a far tougher matchup than last week. I don’t expect the offense to go off like it did last week, nor do I expect the defense to be as stout.
On offense, I still expect to see solid play from Shaun Hill, and I don’t expect much from Calvin Johnson as it seems like that shoulder is really bothering him. We should see plenty of catches made by the tight ends Brandon Pettigrew and Tony Scheffler. ‘Grew should get 5+ catches, and Scheffler should have 3+ catches in the game. I wouldn’t expect much from the run game as the Giants are only allowing 3.5 yards per carry on the ground. The key on offense will be whether or not Nate Burleson can step up and fill the void left by Calvin Johnson.
On defense, the Lions front line should get solid pressure on Eli Manning. I think the secondary will surprise both Giants and Lions fans with their good play, but they will still give up a few plays/TDs. I expect Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs to have great days on the ground against the Lions defense that has been allowing 4.8 yards per carry.
Overall, I see this as a loss. The New York Giants are at home and are red hot, especially on defense. Without the running game, that front line will have their way with our offensive line. If Calvin Johnson was fully healthy and Matthew Stafford was starting than the Lions would still have a decent shot at winning this game, but I expect a loss with those two players out. Final score: Giants 32, Lions 24.
Zac: The first image that comes to my mind when thinking about the Giants is Jay Cutler laying on the Meadowlands turf. The Giants defense has 19 sacks on the year, good enough for third best in the NFL. Nine of those sacks came against Jay Cutler in the first half of their week four win over the Bears. If the Lions want to even stay competitive in this game they will have to keep Shaun Hill on his feet.
Defensively, the Lions need to keep doing what they have been doing. The front four has done a great job of generating enough of a pass rush to avoid having to blitz and it is paying dividends in the secondary. The Lions have already have seven interceptions on the year after coming up with only nine last year and four in 2008. Eli Manning has thrown as many interceptions as touchdown passes on the year so the Lions secondary may have some opportunities to make a big play.
Special Teams player of the week Stefan Logan could have another big game as the Giants kick coverage has left something to be desired so far this year. Special teams is one area the Lions will have an edge.
Chalk this one up as another competitive game that the Lions just aren’t ready to win yet. New York Giants 27, Detroit Lions 24
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