Eli Manning Due For a Big Performance vs. Philadelphia Eagles

By Michael Netter
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants look like one of the worst teams in the NFL. After losing their first four games of the season, it looks like Sunday’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles is a must win. Even with such a poor start, Big Blue is only two games behind the division leading Dallas Cowboys. Any divisional game is huge, but a home game against a shaky Eagles team makes it even more important. If New York wants to turn their season around, Eli Manning must remind us why he’s a two time Super Bowl MVP.

Manning has been too careless with the ball in 2013, resulting in a touchdown to interception ratio of 6-9, or 2-3. In New York’s last 25 drives, they’ve managed to put points on the board only once! Good thing they’re going against an Eagles defense that hasn’t picked off a ball since Week 1 against the Washington Redskins. The Eagles defense ranks 31st in passing yards allowed per game, and they’ve yet to hold an opponent under 26 points this season. Eli Manning and the Giants offense will look much better this week against a poor Eagles secondary.

The Eagles switched to a 3-4 defensive scheme this year. It looks like they’re having significant troubles with it, especially since some players are not in their accustom positions. Trent Cole has played defensive end in a 4-3 scheme his entire career up until this year, and it doesn’t look like his skills translate to outside linebacker. Defensive lineman Fletcher Cox is a tackle who was switched to end because of the new defensive scheme. Since the Giants have shown that they can’t block a soul, look for Trent Cole to come off the edge often. This will result in Eli getting rid of the ball in a hurry (hopefully), and there should be gaps in the middle and down the seams of the field.

Look for Victor Cruz to have another 100+ yard performance. His speed and quickness gets him open within a couple seconds, and that’s something Manning needs with a banged up offensive line. Brandon Myers should create mismatches with linebackers, and he could start having the year coach Tom Coughlin thought he would. Whichever receiver lines up in the slot will perform come Sunday. New York has three above average receivers in Hakeem Nicks, Rueben Randle, and Cruz, and it’s time for Manning to take advantage of it. Nicks dropped a couple of balls last Sunday, but he should be ready to turn things around against Philadelphia.

I believe Eli Manning will have a great game on Sunday, recording 300+ yards with a 3-1 touchdown-interception ratio. If New York loses this week, they can basically start thinking about the 2014 NFL Draft. I think we will see a determined Giants team who are desperate to beat a division rival. Older brother Peyton Manning torched Philly’s defense last Sunday, and I’m sure Eli asked him for some pointers. Eli Manning and the New York football Giants will look like the team everyone thought they’d be against a poor Eagles defense.

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