The Giants (1-5) travel to Philadelphia to take on the Eagles (1-4-1) in a Thursday Night Football matchup on October 21. The NFC East race is very close, and a win for the Giants Thursday could lead the Giants to be at least tied for first place. Here’s 5 Giants to watch for against the Eagles.
DL: Leonard Williams
Williams is having his best season as a Giant thus far. He has 3 sacks so far this season with 5 tackles for loss and 6 QB hits. With the injuries to the EDGE position, we saw Williams line up on the edge standing up, and he was effective. The Eagles will be getting OT Lane Johnson back, but you wonder how healthy he is. As for the rest of the Eagles offensive linemen, they are quite thin. If Williams can create pressure on Wentz (who’s thrown 9 interceptions on the year), the defense can create turnover opportunities and make the Eagles have hard time on offense.
RB: Devonta Freeman
Freeman is coming off back-to-back 60 yard rushing games, the most by a Giants running back this season. The Giants run game as a whole is lead by QB Daniel Jones. This week they are up against an Eagles defense that is struggling against the run. The Giants truly need a spark in their offense and to especially be able to score touchdowns in the red zone. This is the best opportunity for Freeman to punch it in and to be able to help create play-action opportunities for the Giants.
S: Jabrill Peppers
With LB Tae Crowder going to IR, this may open up a window of opportunity for Peppers to play in the box, putting Ryan and Love back at safety. Peppers will be looking at covering TE Richard Rogers since both Ertz and Goedert are out. Peppers will also help in the run game against Boston Scott who we all remember well from last year when he filled in for Sanders and went off. Peppers will be in a position where he will serve a vital role, and could even serve as a spy on Carson Wentz. Peppers was coming off an ankle injury and got banged up last week, but we all saw that ankle was strong enough when he pulled off that back handspring and landed it with perfection during their celebration last Sunday.
OT: Andrew Thomas
Thomas has had a tough going so far and was benched to start last Sunday’s game due to a violation of team rules. Matt Peart and Thomas split reps and Thomas still seemed to struggle. The task doesn’t get much easier as he’s up to face the Eagles defense that has 21 sacks on the year. In this game, Thomas will need to show that he can handle the pressure and protect Jones’ blindside. Thomas doesn’t necessarily need to win his matchup, he just needs to hold the rope just enough to let plays execute.
WR: Austin Mack
Mack saw his first NFL action last week as he caught just one catch for one yard. With CJ Board going down that leaves just three WRs on the active roster as of right now. We will probably see another added before the game, whether it be a player elevated from the practice squad like Alex Bachman or Benjamin Victor, or if somehow Sterling Shepard gets activated after being on IR. This will give Mack a bigger role versus the Eagles with a secondary that has also struggled. Mack isn’t a speed guy but he’s a player who will run good slant and out routes. My bold prediction for the week is that Mack will score on a slant pass in the red zone for his first NFL touchdown.
Photo Credit: New York Post
About Dylan Davis
Dylan Davis is a graduate of the State University of New York at Canton, where he obtained a B.A.A in Sport Management. He is a former athlete of football and baseball and sports fan for much of his life. Dylan creates content for 366 Sports and New York Giants 366, and is also a host on his own show, “The J&D Sports Show”.