It’s that time of the week: NFL Power Rankings. The (2-6) New York Giants dropped its sixth contest of the season Monday night in heartbreaking fashion, a 20-17 loss to the (4-4) Kansas City Chiefs.
The majority of media outlets below dropped the Giants by one spot or simply kept them at the same spot as last week. The Giants put up a good fight on Monday night but ultimately it wasn’t good enough: a combination of ill-timed mistakes and poor offensive execution when it mattered allowed the Chiefs to pull ahead late in the game. Daniel Jones and the offense couldn’t do anything when they got the ball back with a minute and change left.
Aggregating several rankings from around the Internet, the Giants come out to an average ranking of No. 26 (last week: No. 26) in the 32-team NFL. Our figure averages all the rankings below except for DraftKings, which bases its ranking on point spread differential.
Let’s check out what outlets around the league are saying about the Giants after week 8:
NFL.com: No. 25 (was 24)
The Giants are so injury plagued that you start to wonder if Joe Judge broke a mirror while walking under a ladder with a black cat this summer. Big Blue entered a prime-time matchup versus the Chiefs missing Saquon Barkley (ankle) and Kenny Golladay (hip). By the fourth quarter, they were without Sterling Shepard (quad) and Dante Pettis (shoulder). Patrick Graham’s defense kept New York in the game, but you’re not going to beat the Chiefs at Arrowhead — even this slumping, troubled version of the defending AFC champs — if you score just 17 points. The Giants will eventually get many of their key players back on the field, but they’ve dug a hole that will be difficult to escape.
NBC Sports: No. 26 (was 26)
Peyton Manning going all-in on destroying Joe Judge’s clock management is what the Manningcast was made for.
CBS Sports: No. 26 (was 25)
The defense played a heck of a game against the Chiefs, but it wasn’t enough. They didn’t do enough on offense against a bad Chiefs defense.
ESPN: No. 26 (was 27)
Biggest Achilles’ heel: Pass rush
Forget about sacks. The Giants’ defense can’t even get consistent pressure on opposing quarterbacks without a high-end edge rusher. The team entered Monday night 24th in the NFL with a 25.2% pressure rate, per NFL Next Gen Stats. It has prevented this defense from repeating its success from last season and is the Giants’ biggest weakness. — Jordan Raanan
Sporting News: No. 27 (was 27)
The Giants got another win in Week 8, adding the Panthers to their resume along with another NFC South foe, the Saints. They are still trying to battle Washington to get out of the division cellar and the Chiefs will set them further back.
Pro Football Network: No. 26 (was 25)
Daniel Jones has played some of the best football of his career so far in 2021, but it doesn’t matter a lick because his defense has grossly underperformed. Additionally, he’s carrying the anchor of OC Jason Garrett onto the field with him. Oh, and let’s not forget the offensive line that might as well be a mirage because they hardly even slow down opposing pass rushers. The Giants’ weapons are a lot of fun, even in Kenny Golladay’s absence. Kadarius Toney has been a treat to watch, and the rest of the cast can play as well.
Defensively, they’ve underachieved. New York’s linebacker play is a massive issue, and their safety play has been underwhelming. Still, they’ve been better against the pass than they have the run, which is disappointing given the mass of assets they’ve spent on the interior of that defensive line over the years.
The Giants didn’t run near the number of plays the Chiefs did, and this game came down to Kansas City giving themselves more opportunities to score in the end. New York’s defense looked good against a Chiefs offense that, despite struggling, is still one of the most dominant units in the NFL. The Giants are a struggling franchise that must make big changes to turn their fortunes around in the offseason.
Yahoo! Sports: No. 24 (was 27)
They’ve lost nine in a row under the prime time lights, somewhere they’ll appear just one more time in 2021 barring an unforeseen flex.
New York Post: No. 27 (was 25)
The Giants don’t do many things well, but they could teach a master class in how to lose in heartbreaking fashion. They executed the defensive blueprint for beating the Chiefs, save for a couple costly penalties, including one negating an interception with the score tied in the fourth quarter. But they managed just three scores on a historically bad defense and lost 20-17.
Sports Illustrated: No. 28 (was 27)
The Giants hung tough at Arrowhead on Monday night, but they are banged up, and I just don’t trust them to show up like that every week. They are now tumbling toward an ugly 2–8 start with the Raiders on a short week and then the Bucs. Then the conversation will turn to draft prospects and job security.
DraftKings: No. 20 (was 20)
DraftKings has moved from subjective assessments to using spread differential. Point differential is a helpful tool for figuring out the best and worst teams. However, point spread can offer a little more context to how good or bad teams might be. The Bills remain a notch behind the Cardinals atop the spread differential with the currently Cooper Rush-led Cowboys right behind them. The most intriguing team remains the Eagles, who this week benefit from a thorough beating of the Lions.