After playing on Thursday night, the New York Giants had a weekend off. They get back to work on Monday to prepare for a home game against the Arizona Cardinals. Here are some thoughts on the Giants as we head toward a very interesting Week 7 matchup.
Youth is being served
Daniel Jones. Dexter Lawrence. DeAndre Baker. Oshane Ximines. Ryan Connelly. Darius Slayton. All rookies.
Saquon Barkley. Will Hernandez. B.J. Hill. Lorenzo Carter. Second-year players.
Jabrill Peppers. Evan Engram. Dalvin Tomlinson. Third-year players.
If you don’t feel good about the foundation that has been laid to carry the Giants into the future, I don’t know what to tell you. That list of players is a pretty darn good core to build with.
Markus Golden looks like what the Giants hoped for
The Giants gave former Arizona Cardinals edge rusher Markus Golden a one-year, $3.75 million “prove it” contract in the offseason. The Giants gave Golden the chance to prove he could still be the 12.5-sack impact pass rusher he was in 2016 before a knee injury wrecked most of the last two seasons.
With a team-leading five sacks and 11 quarterback hits through six games, Golden has answered that question in the affirmative. Golden is not only an impact player on the field, he’s a respected, hard-working player off of it.
Provided he stays healthy, the 28-year-old is going to get paid handsomely this offseason.
Trade deadline is coming
The NFL trade deadline is 4 p.m. ET Oct. 29 — basically two weeks from now.
For the Giants, I think you are looking at a scenario pretty similar to last season when the Giants traded Eli Apple to the New Orleans Saints and Damon Harrison to the Detroit Lions. GM Dave Gettleman won’t be holding a fire sale. He won’t be a buyer, either.
If he gets an offer worth accepting for cornerback Janoris Jenkins, I think Jackrabbit is the most likely Giant to be moved. Sam Beal (IR/Designated to Return) could be back in a couple of weeks. The Giants need to find out what they have in Beal. Also, they can’t keep Corey Ballentine off the field forever. Can they?
Could veterans like Alec Ogletree or Rhett Ellison draw some interest? Maybe, but that seems likely.
Reviewing pass interference is a joke
I think the refusal by senior vice president of officiating Al Riveron to overturn the “clear and obvious” pass interference by New England’s Jonathan Jones on Golden Tate is a tipping point for a rule the NFL obviously didn’t want to implement and doesn’t want to enforce.
I think Peter King said everything about this that I want to say. He used a look at the Tate play, and one Riverson said should be pass interference, to make his points. Here they are:
#NFL officials have gone rogue. 100-percent. This wasn’t called on the field and then wasn’t changed after it was flagged by the #Giants. So they ruled TWICE that this wasn’t defensive pass interference. Which is just blatantly wrong and a purposeful refusal to change the call. pic.twitter.com/BY2rRE6gQc— Charles Robinson (@CharlesRobinson) October 11, 2019
King, correctly, said it was “inarguable” that if the Cooks play should have been pass interference so too should the Tate play. Here’s more from King:
I talk to coaches and I talk to general managers. They are getting the point now: It is futile to throw a challenge flag on a pass-interference call or non-call. “But if it’s going to be next to impossible to change a PI call,” one GM told me Friday, “why was the rule changed in the first place? Why go through this huge exercise if the league’s decided nothing’s going to change?” As Kevin Seifert of ESPN.com reported, only one of 21 challenged calls between Week 3 through Thursday night’s Pats-Giants game was changed. This is not why the rule was modified last March. The rule was changed to fix obvious mistakes. If the Tate call was not a mistake, then the Nickell Robey-Coleman non-PI call in the NFC Championship Game was not a mistake.
What the league has made obvious is this: If it’s a game with huge implications, we’ll make the call. If it’s a 35-14 game in October with three minutes left with a 2-4 team being wronged, we’re not changing it. Nothing to see here, move along.
It turns out this rules change, through six weeks, has had a quite incredible unintended consequence: It has made the public, and the 32 teams, trust NFL officiating even less than it did when Nickell Robey-Coleman plowed into Tommylee Lewis in the Superdome nine months ago.
Don’t look now ...
But, if you do look at the NFC East standings you see that the 2-4 Giants are only one game behind the 3-3 Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles, who face each other on Sunday.
The Cowboys have lost three straight. The Eagles didn’t look great against the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.
The Giants, I don’t believe, are as good as the Cowboys or Eagles at this point. If they can beat Arizona on Sunday, though, they have a chance to play some meaningful games for a while this season. That can only help the development of this young team going forward.