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5 New York Giants to Watch on Monday

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5 Giants to Watch on Monday Night

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants are sitting at 0-6. Then again, maybe sitting isn’t the right word. The New York Giants are drowning at 0-6.

New York is currently in last place in the NFC East and one of only three remaining winless teams in the NFL. This is not a place where most people thought the Giants would be at this point in the season. Instead of looking ahead to the playoffs, it may be smarter for New York to start looking ahead to next season instead. However, the question remains: when will the Giants win their first game? Monday seems like a legitimate possibility.

On Monday night, the Giants host the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings are just 1-4 and their lone win came against the Steelers who were also winless at the time. Newly-acquired Josh Freeman will be under center and expectations for his performance are pretty much unknown. Freeman has shown he can be a decent quarterback but he hasn’t shown that in a while.

With next year in mind, the Giants have to use the remaining games to keep an eye on veterans they are going to want to bring back and youngsters that they are going to sink big bills into. New York is not in a position where they are going to need a complete overhaul. The G-Men still have players that were key components of one, if not two, Super Bowl victories.

Here are five New York Giants players to keep an eye on Monday night.

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5. Will Hill

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In the two games since returning from a four-game suspension, safety Will Hill has compiled 16 tackles and shown the ability to break up passes with crushing hits. This is only Hill’s second season but he looks like he could eventually become a big player within the secondary. His presence has already improved the battered defense, where Antrel Rolle has become a mirage and, while Ryan Mundy has been solid, the Giants have missed Stevie Brown’s ability to come up with timely interceptions.

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4. Peyton Hillis

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The Giants signed Peyton Hillis earlier this week to help provide some relief in the backfield. Brandon Jacobs didn’t practice until Thursday and New York once again waived Da’Rel Scott. The coaching staff has confirmed Hillis will be active and playing a serious role on Monday. Jacobs had a great game against the Bears but their defensive line was on life support. Hillis hasn’t been effective recently but that could always turn around in a new city.

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3. Jon Beason

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Jon Beason made his Giants debut against the Bears, when he recorded 12 total tackles. In just one game Beason looked like the best linebacker (by far) that the Giants have had all season long. Beason was a two-time All-Pro with the Panthers back in 2008 and 2009, and, if he can manage to return even close to that form, New York’s linebacking corps will be drastically improved. On Monday, Beason has the chance to make his presence known against the Vikings’ Adrian Peterson-led offense.

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2. Hakeem Nicks

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Hakeem Nicks was surrounded by a whirlwind of trade rumors this week. His production has fluctuated this season and, overall, he has been less than spectacular. In four out of the team’s six games this season, Nicks has caught four or less passes. He is also yet to find the end zone. Nicks will become a free agent in the offseason and the Giants may not be able to afford to bring him back. In the midst of the rumors, Nicks called himself a “Giant”. Let’s see if he can back it up on the field.

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1. Eli Manning

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

He’s experienced the highest highs. Now, Eli Manning is going through the lowest lows. Turnovers have always been Manning’s Achilles heel but now he is being put under the magnifying glass. Manning has been a major contributor in the Giants’ failures as a team. He’s thrown 15 interceptions through six games, which is as many picks as he threw all of last year. The time is now for Manning to start playing like the two-time Super Bowl MVP that he is.