Written By: Kyle Newton (@KNewt22)
The New York Giants have played poorly in two home games early in the year, and could easily be 0-2. The Giants should use their come from behind victory against the Buccaneers as a catalyst to get back on track. If the Giants can do at least 5 of these 7 things tonight than they will come out on top guaranteed.
What will the replacement refs do this week to fire up Tom Coughlin (Courtesy NFL)
7) Limit Penalties:
Winning a football game on the road in a night game is tough enough. The Giants have been one of the better teams in the NFL when it comes to penalties and if they want to win on the road that has to continue.
6) Take the crowd out of the game early:
Panther fans are going to be riled up for their first night game of the season, especially against the defending champs. The Panthers have a great opportunity to show the league that they are for real and the stadium is going to get loud. Jump on them early and quiet the crowd on the Giants first road test of the year.
5) Win the turnover battle:
It is almost impossible to win on the road if you lose the turnover battle. Both teams are -1 for the year but if the Giants front four can rattle Cam Newton they may be able to bait him into a few interceptions and swing the balance in Big Blue’s favor.
Eli has been fighting off defenders far too frequently in 2012 (Courtesy NFL)
4) Protect Eli:
The Giants o-line needs to keep Eli on his feet. In week one against Dallas Eli was forced to get rid of the ball much sooner than he wanted. Just because Eli isn’t getting sacked doesn’t mean he is being protected. Keep Eli upright and let him pick apart the Panther defense.
3) Run the football:
The Giants are averaging only 88 yards a game rushing so far in 2012 and have yet to have a player eclipse 100 yards for the season. The Giants are throwing the football nearly 66% of the time, making their offense more predictable and easier to stop. If the Giants can establish any kind of run offense it will greatly help the offensive line protect Eli and it will help the explosive wide receiving core to bust open a few long plays.
The Giants have a tough task ahead of them to try to slow down Cam Newton (Courtesy NFL)
2) Contain Cam Newton:
Containing Cam Newton is easier said than done, but if the Giants watch the game tape from the Panthers week one loss at Tampa they will find that heavy blitzing and staying in your rush lanes pretty much shuts down Cam. He doesn’t like to get rid of the ball quickly and wants to make big plays with his feet. If the Giants can get to the quarterback and not over pursue than Newton will struggle and the Panthers offense will unravel.
1) Play hard for 60 minutes, not 15:
The Giants have come out flat in their first two games and tried fighting back in the fourth quarter. The problem with that is that you leave the outcome of the game in the other teams hands. If the Giants play from start to finish like a fourth quarter rally is needed than it will help everyone on the team. Play calling is opened up, the crowd is silenced, and the defensive line can pin their ears back and go get Cam.
Final Prediction: Giants 31- Panthers 27
Written By: Kyle Newton
Producer at ESPN Tampa Bay and a senior at the University of South Florida. Huge NBA and NFL follower. Catch me on facebook.com/kcnewton or on twitter @KNewt22