One thing that Tom Coughlin spoke about when he became the head coach of the New York Giants, was that he was going to be better at preventing injuries. Well it is tough to hold it against him with the two Super Bowl Championships, but to be fair he has been much worse than Jim Fassel at preventing injuries. Every year is the same story with the Giants, tons of injuries and usually all in the same position. Fortunately for New York one position has not been completely decimated, yet. Today they will be without Ahmad Bradshaw, Prince Amukamara and Kenny Phillips.
New York must be ready for this very talented Atlanta Falcons team. Atlanta can score many different ways, but mostly through the air with their two outstanding wide receivers and their Hall-of-Fame tight end, Tony Gonzalez. Over the years the Giants have developed a penchant for winning in Atlanta, but that will be put to the test today. The Falcons are coming off their second loss of the season and will be looking quiet their critics with a win against the defending champions. I think it is pretty clear that the Falcons are going to put their best effort on the field today.
Keys to the Game: With Ahmad Bradshaw out, Kevin Gilbride and the offense may be too inclined to get away from the running game. But you cannot do that in this game. The Falcons are very explosive in their home building and the best way to slow them down is to keep the ball out of Matt Ryan’s hands. David Wilson has not shown the ability to carry a workload yet, but on the other hand you know he is fresh. Let Wilson get at least 20 carries, with a few others mixed in among the other backs.
STOP THE RUN! STOP THE RUN!!!!!!! For Christ’s sake the Giants couldn’t stop the run if their lives depended on it. And if you cannot stop the run against the Falcons, than you are nothing more than a group bums out there. The Falcons have been awful all year at rushing. They rank 28th in the league in terms of rushing yards per game. They only average 86 yards rushing a game, and if the Giants can’t take advantage of that than they can just walk home because they will have no shot at winning this game unless they get five turnovers.
Convert red zone attempts into touchdowns. Both the Giants and Falcons rank in the top 3 of red zone attempts per game. This is a good statistic if you are converting these attempts into touchdowns, otherwise they become a waste with a field goal attempts, which the Giants have become experts at over this season. The Falcons are better than the Giants at converting these attempts into touchdowns, with a 58.8% conversion rate.
Injuries: As stated before, the Giants are severely banged up with Amukamara, Bradshaw, and Kenny Phillips out. Nicks is probable, but Michael Boley is questionable. Boley did not have a good game last week, but they are going to need him desperately if they have any intentions of stopping this high powered offense.
Receiver Roddy White was questionable, but he has been confirmed to be ready to play. No surprise there. Other game time decisions include safety William Moore, defensive tackle Jonathan Babineaux and receiver Harry Douglas.
Final Analysis: The New York Giants are just way too banged up. Had they not had all these injuries, I would have picked New York to win, but the Falcons are playing for a lot and they have health on their side. That is usually the formula of victory in the modern NFL. Atlanta 32 New York 24.