Monday, August 15, 2011

Are the New York Giants Contenders?

Interesting to note that in a division with teams from Philadelphia and Dallas, the team from New York is the one nobody is talking about. The Eagles, or the "all-hype" team according to Dallas Defensive Coordinator Rob Ryan, has added a ton of superstar-type talent. The Dallas Cowboys will always have the spotlight on them, due to the "America's Team" designation by Owner Jerry Jones. Additionally, Redskins QB Rex Grossman, declared that his team will win the NFC East, even though Washington has 10 wins in the past 2 seasons combined. Then we have the New York Football Giants. It hasn't been a good offseason for the Giants, but even with all of the talk going on about the other teams in the NFC East, I think that the Giants will actually be better than most people think.

The aging offensive line of last year has been changed, as they have entrusted William Beatty to be the new LT. David Diehl will move over to LG in the revamped Giants offensive line. There aren't any flashy additions to the Giants roster, but they've put together a team that will compete. Their defensive line is still among the best in the NFL and with news that Osi Umenyiora will rejoin the team at training camp, the defense will get even better.

Eli Manning will need to find another safety blanket now that Steve Smith and Kevin Boss have left via free agency, but the Giants do have some young options. Travis Beckum is their answer to replace Boss, even though he isn't as good of a blocker as the new Oakland TE. Mario Manningham, Domenik Hixon, and Victor Cruz will all be crucial pieces of the offense as they play along side Hakeem Nicks, who had a breakout season last year.

Bradshaw is back to the starting RB role and as long as he stays healthy, he will have a solid season. Despite all the hatred and criticism, Eli Manning is a solid QB. He's shown his clutch playmaking ability and he has fully embraced the role as the veteran leader on the offense.

Defensively, the Giants are relying heavily on Kenny Philips, who is coming off a disappointing year. Along with Antrel Rolle, Terrell Thomas, and Corey Webster, the Giants have enough talent to be a above-average defense.

The Giants don't ever look pretty playing football, but they have a lot of fight in them. They will win games and compete in the NFC. There is no doubt that the Eagles are the most talented team in the division, but the Giants will definitely be in the conversation for the Wild Card spots.

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