Diary of a Giants Fan: Giants-Eagles Preview
After romping over, around, and through the Carolina Panthers last Thursday, the Giants head into Philadelphia to take on the Eagles.
There's little doubt that when The Four Seasons sang those famous lyrics, "Oh What a Night," they weren't thinking about football. And yet, there was their tune, escaping the lips of Giant fans after they watched Big Blue orchestrate their best performance in decades en route to a 36-7 drubbing.
Even now, at least a week after, it's hard not bask in the win's warm glow. How could you not? How long has it been since you could look at a game and, even with the most critical eye, honestly say that every Giant played well? How long has it been since they were that dominant? Down Bradshaw, down Nicks, down Hixon, down Diehl, and on the road off a short week? No matter. Defiance! Thy name is Andre Brown and Ramses Barden.
With Nicks likely to return Sunday, I'd expect Barden to slip back down the depth chart, but don't look for the same from Brown, who won't soon fade away. Bradshaw will be the starter - apparently my letters to Tom Coughlin have gone unread - so Brown will likely have to settle for the low end of a 60/40 split. But each carry will be an important one, as the Giants play an Eagles defense who looks to be one of the best in the league on paper.
With that said, if the Eagles have taught us anything this season, it's that "on paper" looks can be deceiving, if not outright lies. On paper, the Eagles have a dynamic offense. In reality? They've turned the ball over 12 times in three games. On paper, the Eagles are 2-1. In reality? They barely escaped Brandon Weeden's first career game, were trounced by Kevin Kolb and the Cardinals, and turned the ball over TWELVE TIMES IN THREE GAMES!
Still, they're the Eagles, we're the Giants, and in a rivalry like this, all bets are off. Especially when the rivalry has been stoked by the buffoonish words of a player whose week and a half of success has him thinking it's appropriate to challenge a two time Super Bowl champion whose jock he couldn't carry. Is that a bit much? Poorly written? Perhaps. But the point stands. Shady McCoy, who are you to call Osi Umenyiora a ballerina? How about you focus on making sure your name isn't forgotten this time next week. Still harsh? Too bad. It's Eagles-Giants.
And as for how the NFC East battle will turn out, I confess myself torn. The fatalist in me sees Michael Vick posting Spergon Wynn numbers and worries that he's due for a breakout game. The reckless Giant fan in me sees an offense that won't be stopped, a defensive line who can use their speed and athleticism to contain Vick, and - right now - a better team in the Giants. And while either could be true, or both, I choose to believe that the latter is the most likely. Though they settled for too many field goals, the Giants team that played in Carolina wouldn't lose to many teams in this league. And so the only question is, does that Giants team show up?
I think so. It's a better opponent, it's a rivalry game so it'll be closer, but I think the Giants get it done. Eli through the air and Bradshaw/Brown on the ground to control the game, with the D-line doing enough to get the job done. Prediction? 24-17 G-Men.
Follow me on Twitter for live tweets throughout the game, and check back for a recap as soon as it goes final - and as always, Go Giants!