Can the 0-5 New York Giants got to Sports Authority Field at Mile High on Sunday night and beat, or at least compete with, the 3-1 Denver Broncos? Let’s look at five things to watch during the game.
Will the Giants embarrass themselves?
This will be a nationally televised game. Will it be a national nightmare for the Giants? They are 0-5, their season is over and they are in serious turmoil. They are without their starting wide receivers. They have a bunch of other starters who haven’t practiced all week and may not play.
Can they pull themselves together, play a spirited game and at least make the Broncos earn a victory? I’m not sure. If they don’t give effort this could get really ugly.
How will the Giants deploy their wide receivers?
We know the names of the guys who will be playing wide receiver because, well, because we can read the roster as well as anyone else. Roger Lewis Jr., Tavarres King, Ed Eagan and Travis Rudolph will be the receivers. Three of them, of course, weren’t on the roster a few days ago.
How the Giants deploy them, and whether they use rookie tight end Evan Engram as a wide receiver on occasion, is actually one of the few truly interesting aspects of Sunday’s game from a Giants perspective.
Who actually will be playing?
The Giants’ injury list includes six starters who have not practiced this week — Jonathan Casillas, Landon Collins, Olivier Vernon, Paul Perkins, Weston Richburg and Sterling Shepard.
Will any of them play? The Giants will be under-manned even if some of them do. You might need a roster to figure out who is playing for the Giants on Sunday night.
Will Von Miller break Eli Manning?
I could have titled this “how will the Giants block Von Miller?,” but that would have been boring. I figured this sub-head would do a much better job of keeping your attention.
Question is, how can the Giants prevent Miller from doing this ...
More #Broncos DL sneakiness. Wolfe w/ the hold to let Von Miller run free for the sack. pic.twitter.com/t3TkvHah8N— Josh Cohen (@jco3215) October 4, 2017
Then doing it and busting out one of these ...
☑️ Get the sack— NFL (@NFL) August 27, 2017
☑️ DANCE!@VonMiller doing what he does best! #GBvsDEN pic.twitter.com/gXKMoU4npu
Miller generally lines up over the right tackle, and Giants right tackle Bobby Hart was atrocious last week. Joey Bosa absolutely abused him. If Hart plays, and I’m not convinced that the Giants won’t once again shuffle the offensive line and put Justin Pugh at right tackle, the Giants will have to give Hart help. A lot of it. Chip blocks, lining a tight end up on that side as often as possible. Whatever it takes.
How concerned about Miller is offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan?
“You take the greatest right tackle, left tackle, take every tackle that ever played in the National Football League – they’re going to struggle against Von Miller,” Sullivan said this week.
Memo to Manning: You know that “get down before you get hit” thing? Make sure that’s in your game plan this week.
All those fresh faces
Eagan, Rudolph and cornerback Donte Deayon could all make their NFL debuts Sunday night. Rookie Avery Moss could play more. Maybe we see some of Cap Capi. Second-year cornerback Michael Hunter has been inactive all season, and the Giants will need him this week.
As bad as things are for the Giants right now, one of the fun things can be to see if any of these young guys can find success and become useful pieces for the Giants going forward.