Sunday Night Football Preview – New York Giants @ Philadelphia Eagles

The NFC East carries some of the most vicious, long standing rivalries in the NFL. Sunday nights game between the New York Giants & the Philadelphia Eagles is no different, dating back to 1933, with this being the 151st contest between the teams. This particular matchup is made all the more interesting as 1st place in the division is on the table.

The Giants, 6-3, had a fantastic start to the season, with many touting them as the best in the NFC. However, they have not been able to shake the criticism that they have yet to beat an elite team this year. Their two early season losses came against the Colts & Titans, while last week they fell to a reinvigorated Dallas Cowboys side. The Giants will be looking to bounce back from that disappointing loss, and they certainly have the ability to do so. On the back of a scary defensive line led by Osi Umeniyora (8 Sacks, tied 3rd in the NFL), New York have the 1st ranked total defence, allowing an average of just 270 yards per game. They also have a wealth of offensive weapons. Hakeem Nicks is tied for 1st in the NFL with 9 recieving touchdowns, Ahmad Bradshaw is 3rd in the NFL with 838 rushing yards and Eli Manning, the man leading it all, is tied 1st in the NFL with 19 touchdown passes.

While they certainly have the weapons to get it done against the Eagles, they will face perhaps their toughest challenge of the season against Philadelphia’s offence. The word that best fits their play at the moment is ‘explosive’, and theres not much more that can be said about Vick’s emergence as a potential MVP candidate that hasn’t already been said. The Eagles were a good team last year with Donovan McNabb under center. Vick is certainly throwing as well as McNabb was , and whats difficult to explain is how much of a nightmare it is for defences to contend with passing ability coupled with running back-like elusiveness. The Eagles showed against the Redskins that you can take away a few weapons from their offence but they still have options, with 6 individial players scoring touchdowns. The Giants will have realised very early in their preparation for this week that they will struggle to stop the Eagles scoring, and to win this one they will simply have to go out and outscore them on offence.

Ones To Watch

The Giants are going to rely heavily on Hakeem Nicks. As mentioned, he leads the leage with 9 TD’s this year and has become Mannings favorite downfield target this season. While traditionally a power running team, I see this game has being a straight shootout and the Giants will have to pass the ball more than they might like. They will need their best reciever.

Eli Manning, while leading the league in TD’s, has also thrown the 2nd most interceptions, and “leads” the NFL in turnovers (INTs + Fumbles). Asante Samuel is one of the best cover cornerbacks in the game and has 5 INTs this year so far (2nd NFL). The Eagles like to blitz more than most teams, and this will force Eli Manning to make quick decisions, which is not a great strength of his. Dont be suprised to see Samuel walk away from this game with a pick or two.


I really think this is going to be a full on NFC East shootout. 1st place in the division is on the line, not to mention bragging rights and both teams are going to be fired up for it. The historic rivalry has been high scoring in recent years, and I’m not expecting that to change this weekend. You really don’t want to miss it.

New York Giants 38 – 45 Philadelphia Eagles


Andy Stuart

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