The New York Giants, fresh off a huge victory over the Dallas Cowboys and leading the NFC East with a modest 4-3 record, hit the road this weekend to face the New Orleans Saints. Oddsmakers have pegged the Giants at 3-point underdogs in the opening line.
Perhaps it's just as well that Las Vegas, and probably many NFL analysts, see this coming Sunday's game in New Orleans as one the Giants are not likely to win. It is a team, like others during Tom Coughlin's time as Giants head coach, that seems to relish the adversity, the idea that their ups and downs leave people not certain they should believe in this team yet.
"You have to prove the doubters wrong," Coughlin said on Monday.
After two straight losing seasons and an 0-2 start to this season that included a pair of historic fourth-quarter collapses this Giants team is trying to do just that. The Giants head into New Orleans having won four of their last five games. They will be trying to get to two games over .500 for the first time since the finished the 2012 season 9-7.
The Giants will be looking at a New Orleans team whose season has, in a way, mirrored that of the Giants. The Saints lost their first three games, but have won three of four and are now 3-4 on the season. The Saints have won two straight, defeating the Atlanta Falcons and Indianapolis Colts.
The Giants have been blown out by the Saints in each of their last two visits to New Orleans. In 2011, the Giants lost to New Orleans, 49-29. In 2009, the Saints pounded the Giants, 48-17. That makes Sunday's game, a bit like last week against the Dallas Cowboys, a game in which the Giants have some demons to deal with.