We've got a lot of observations on the Gmen, from TE, to LBer, to their record this season, to Wonder's NFL regular season predictions for all 32 teams and a fade on one very highly touted team.
1) The people who write for this blog are sometimes benefitted by the sprinkling of comments from Merrick, a Giants fan in the Midwest. It cannot be proven, but yesterday's blog was going to share his thoughts on the young rookie LBers that were almost exactly echoed by Banks. It was almost eerie.
2) Another random comment by Merrick which we think is simple and yet far-reaching is why we do not see more of Travis Beckum as a slot receiver. Who suggested this first, we asked Merrick? Why, none other than Mr. Beckum himself! Let me get this straight, a quick TE that cannot block worth spit that is too fast for a LBer, too strong for a S or CB? Seems like a great way to leverage this player's talent. Earth to Gilbride, Earth to Gilbride, come in Gilbride!
3) Lost in the noise of the cuts was that last year's LBer saviors, Adrian Tracy (R6, practice squad) and Phillip Dillard (R4), were both cut. Now we would and will hold out optimism that this year's allegedly talented group of rookies forced this. The past 15 years of history imply that the Giants merely s*cked yet another pair of LBer eggs. I mean, wasn't it the spring of 2010 when we had just drafted Dillard and people were talking about him being the starting MLBer in Sept 2010?! Now, he can't even get brought back with the staff depleted, a DE moved over to LBer and 4 rookies on the squad. If you can give me just one "3" (solid starter) from that entire group of rookies, where do I sign?! Sure hope Banks and Merrick are right.
4) The early returns from the Poll from Monday are in. Please vote if you have not done so. They indicate a "mode" (largest number of votes for one record) of 10-6. I am quite honestly stunned. I forecast 7-9. There are some, including Merrick, who think Goff getting hurt is actually a win for the Giants, as Jones can step in sooner and ascend. But I for one simply see too many issues. No, I am not worried about Eli throwing 25 INTs. He'll improve from there. If he does not, it will be worse than 7 wins. The problem this year is that beyond the weak NFC West, the Giants have a tougher schedule (assuming form holds). No more charity from Wade Phillips. LBer (sorry to our amazing Pro Bowl rookies, nothing amazing occurring in 2011) and TE are going to cost us games. The mid 1990s to 2002 when Shockey arrived were a lost decade of offensive ineptitude because Safeties routinely freelanced w/o a seam threat. Guess what?! Without Boss to threaten the seam, it means that opposing defenses have far less to manage. And that means more difficulty moving the ball. Mario Pea Brain Manningham has to be on the same page with Eli every snap or else there is no edge, because opposing defenses will double Nicks and stop the run. We need MM big time. It can happen. I like Super Mario. But he is inconsistent, must stay healthy and needs to deliver every game for that 10-6 prediction to arrive.
5) Wonder has offered up his predictions on the 16 game season for every team in the NFL. If he is average vs the Over/Under spread in Vegas, he'll be 0.500. Let's see how he does.
NE 12-4 Phila 11-5
Jets 11-5 Dall 9-7
Mia 6-10 NYG 8-8
Buff 4-12 Wash 4-12
6) Wonder on the NFC:
8-8 will be a good year for the Giants. There has to be something wrong with their training and conditioning when you lose more players to season-ending injuries than everyone else by a wide margin.
The Eagles are the most overhyped team in the NFL. I cannot recall this much hype before the start of a season. They do not have an offensive line and I am not crazy about their Linebackers. DeSean Jackson is unhappy. They have a 5'-11" 195 lb. QB that cannot take the pounding with an OL that will not be able to sufficiently protect him. 10 games can win that division, and it does not have to be the Eagles. The Eagles are in no way in the same category of the Saints and Packers.. and right behind those two are the Falcons. So the Eagles are the 4th best team in their conference! If Tyron Smith plays well, if they can go 4-4 in the first 8 games, it would not shock me to see the Boys win the NFC East.