The New York Giants have hit a rough patch in the season that’s seen their lead in the NFC East dwindle to just a single game over the Dallas Cowboys.
Since nearly surrendering a 23-point lead to those same Cowboys in Week 8, the Giants have gone on to consecutive losses against the Pittsburgh Steelers and on the road against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. New York will have its much-needed bye in Week 11 before returning to work with a key home matchup against the Green Bay Packers on Nov. 25.
The Giants offense has particularly struggled during the past three weeks. Versus the Bengals on Sunday, quarterback Eli Manning had another sub-par passing effort while also contributing to the Giants growing turnover problem with a pair of interceptions and a fumble. Over the last three weeks, Manning has completed just 54 percent of his passes and averaged a paltry 177.3 yards a game through the air over.
A portion of the recent problems with the Giants attack must also be pinned on the offensive line, especially on Sunday. After playing well for much of the season, the Giants O-line has been unable to protect Manning recently. On Sunday, against a pedestrian Bengals pass rush, Manning was sacked four times and was under pressure on nearly every drop-back.
The Giants have also gotten little production from their wide receivers in this rough stretch. Victor Cruz has caught just two balls for 44 yards the last three weeks, while running mate Domenik Hixon added just four catches during that time before leaving with an ankle injury against the Bengals.
The New York Giants are clearly scuffling heading into their bye week, but recent history makes it hard to doubt this team while head coach Tom Coughlin is at the controls. The schedule, while challenging, is certainly navigable for a playoff-quality team. Keep that in mind when formulating your NFL picks in the weeks going forward.