Here we are, the New York Giants are 1-0 after an emotional win in their first game with Brian Daboll. And now Daboll gets his home opener vs the 0-1 Carolina Panthers. Carolina is coming off late field goal loss at home against the Browns.
This was a winnable game for the Giants before the season started. It’s even more winnable after seeing how well this coaching staff coached last week. Let’s be honest, the Titans are more talented and better coached than Carolina. The Giants beat Tennessee, albeit with some luck of a shanked 40 yard FG, on the road. It makes sense they are the favorite this Sunday.
Comparing the Panthers and the Giants, three things really stick out:
1) The Panthers can’t stop the run
The Browns rushed for 217 yards last week and only needed to throw for 147 yards to win. That plays perfectly to the strength of the Giants offense. Giving Saquon the rock and keeping the ball out of Jones hands is the Giants best bet to win each week.
2) The Giants coaching staff is better
Brian Daboll may be a rookie head coach but he’s already a better coach than Matt Rhule. That’s not saying much. That’s not really a hot take. Rhule probably has the hottest seat in the NFL and just went into a game Week 1 where all his team needed to do to win was stop the run. Cleveland walked all over Carolina for 3 quarters and a strong 4th quarter made this a game.
3) Baker Mayfield Struggle vs Wink Martindale
The Giants defense is one Baker Mayfield has seen a lot of over his career. He’s faced off against Wink Martindale’s defense 8 times during his career and the Ravens won 5 of those 8 match ups. Baker has completed 58% of his passes for 13 TDs and 10 total turnovers in those games. Mayfield has failed to score more than 15 points in 4 of those 8 match ups. Two of which happened on the road via Martindale the last 2 seasons. Martindale clearly had Baker’s number.
I have the Giants winning the home opener 23-21. A close game that ends with a big Baker Mayfield choke job.