Team Giants


Giants - Vikings
Game 5 preview
Sunday Oct 6, 1:00 PM - Vikings at Giants

Giants (2-2) Vikings (2-2)
The Vikings lost last Sunday in Chicago, 16-6. The Bears defense was just too much for them. The Vikings weren't able to score until the final three minutes of the game.
Last week the Giants overcame a number of mistakes in their 24-3 win over the Washington Redskins. The defense showed up when it counted.

Minnesota Vikings
Quarterback Kirk Cousins was in high demand going into the 2018 season. He was the only quarterback to be franchised twice, and in his three years as a starter with the Washington Redskins, Cousins had thrown for over 4000 yards and 25 touchdowns in each year. The Vikings wanted that, and felt sure that Cousins was the missing piece they needed. They had finished up with a 13-3 season, won their division title, and the first game of the playoffs before losing to the Philadelphia Eagles, who then went on to win in the Super Bowl game. The Jets wanted his skills as well, and offered more money than the Vikings. Cousins, despite his glowing numbers, was just 24-24-1 with the Redskins, and looking for a Super Bowl ready team, chose the Vikings.

Vikings Offense
Kirk Cousins put up high numbers in his first year with the Vikings, but much the same as in his win-loss career record with the Redskins, the team ended up with an 8-7-1 record. Cousins threw for 4298 yards and 30 touchdowns. Taking 40 sacks, throwing 10 interceptions, and fumbling the ball away 7 times, some of his turnovers led to losses. This year the Vikings are running the ball on over 50 percent of their plays. As a result, Cousins overall passing numbers are way down.
With a quarter of the season gone, he's thrown for 735 yards and has 3 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. The team's top receivers last year, Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen each totaled over 1000 yards with their receptions, and each had 9 touchdowns. Now, with the Vikings pushing a strong ground game, they're on track for less than half as many receptions, and there have been some rumblings.
The Vikings knew they had to improve the ground game, and it has really taken off. Dalvin Cook is the main ingredient. Cook had missed five games last year, and has taken the team from ranking near the bottom in the NFL to 3rd. The team is averaging 155.2 yards a game. That's 62 more yards a game than last year. Cook is averaging 5.8 yards a carry, has 5 rushing touchdowns, and he also leads the team with his 15 receptions. Rookie running back Alexander Mattison is in the mix as well, averaging 5.1 yards a carry.

Vikings Defense
The Vikings pass and run defense is ranked 9th and 10th in the league. Former Giants defensive tackle, Linval Joseph, has 2 of the teams 7 sacks. The leader with 3, is Danielle Hunter, who had 14.5 last year. Hunter has Everson Griffen (2 sacks) working from the other side. Their combined pressure on opposing quarterbacks is extremely effective, and their secondary provides tight coverage as well. They've had a chance to see how the Giants are handling their running game without Saquon Barkley, as they saw last week when Wayne Gallman stepped up and averaged 3.5 yards on his 18 carries.
Gallman ended up with 118 total yards from scrimmage, with one rushing touchdown and one receiving touchdown. Linebacker Eric Kendricks will try to do as well as he did last week in slowing Gallman down. Tight end Evan Engram is the Giants leading receiver with 27 catches for 331 yards and 2 touchdowns. Vikings cornerback Mike Hughes is working well in his return to the secondary after missing the first two games of the season. The Giants will also have to watch out for safety Harrison Smith, who has 21 career interceptions.

Giants Offense
So how's it going with Daniel Jones at quarterback? The Giants have two wins to show for it as he learns from his rookie mistakes. Jones took five sacks, and lost two fumbles in his first start, and while there were no sacks, last week, he threw two interceptions. Jones mobility helped him in the first game, where he ran for two touchdowns, and the defense limited his two interceptions in the second to just 3 points for the Redskins. This week he faces the worst of those two defenses combined. Like Tampa Bay, the Vikings are very strong up front, and can get those sacks.
The Redskins got interceptions off Jones, and the Vikings secondary is much better. The Giants still will be without Saquon Barkley, but Wayne Gallman has shown that his running has to be respected. Jones will have Golden Tate on hand, back from his four-game suspension, and the home crowd will be able to see for the first time what Tate can bring to the table. In the past, his skill has been adding yardage after the catch by breaking tackles. That's what he's known for.

Giants Defense
They played their best game of the season last week, and even put points up on the board with a pick-six touchdown. They managed to contain running back Adrian Peterson in the process, limiting him to 28 yards on 11 carries. Dalvin Cook comes to town this week, and his combination of running and receiving skills, makes him tougher to defend. The Bears managed to hold Cook to 35 yards on 14 attempts after he ran for over 100 in the first three games. Even if the Giants have anywhere near the same success, they'll then have to deal with what that brings. Containing Kirk Cousins and his talented receivers.
Minnesota is one of two teams that has run more than it has passed this season, but when the running game was shut down in Chicago, they gave up on that. Stopping Kirk Cousins won't be as easy a task as the Giants had last week, facing the Redskins semi-injured backup quarterback, and then a rookie seeing his first action of the year. The Bears did manage to shut down wide receiver Adam Thielen, but couldn't stop the Cousins to Stefon Diggs connection. Diggs went 7 of 7 for 158 receiving yards. It doesn't help that the Giants will be missing linebacker Ryan Connelly, who sustained a season-ending knee injury. Connelly was instrumental in their last two wins after taking over from Alec Ogletree, who's been sidelined with a hamstring injury.

The Giants have put together two wins in a row. They'll have to work harder at scoring points as Minnesota ranks in the top five, limiting their opposition to less than 16 points a game. The Vikings have taken two division losses, and are last in the NFC North. They're at an advantage having their tough defense up against a rookie quarterback. On the other hand, Pat Shurmur is very familiar with this Vikings team, and that could be an overlooked edge for the Giants in this game.

NFC East Games
Sunday at 1:00pm Vikings (2-2) at Giants (2-2)
Sunday at 1:00pm Jets (0-3) at Eagles (2-2).
Sunday at 1:00pm Patriots (4-0) at Redskins (0-4).
Sunday at 4:25pm Packers (3-1) at Cowboys (3-1).
The Eagles and Cowboys are the only NFC East teams favored to win in these games.
Check out.
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tgtwitter TeamGiants on Twitter.

Janoris Jenkin was named the NFC Defensive Player of the Week, responsible for 3 of 4 interceptions.

Golden Tate leads the NFL with 4,048 yards after the catch since his rookie season of 2010.

Golden Tate forced 65 more missed tackles than any other receiver in his 2010 NFL Draft class.

Pat Shurmur was the offensive coordinator for the Vikings before becoming the Giants head coach.
Next Games
Oct 10 Giants at New England.
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Oct 20 Cardinals at Giants.
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