With NFL training camps underway, the anticipation of viewing football games all-day Sunday is finally becoming reality. The NFL is king, and that was proven with the Hall of Fame game on August 3rd between the Arizona Cardinals and Dallas Cowboys. The first preseason game of the year had stellar television ratings, which ranked higher than any of the NBA Finals games. While the Knicks are an afterthought in basketball, the New York football Giants are possibly on the verge of dominating the NFC East in 2017.
As I wrote in my article for Fantasy Fumble, the Giants should win the east by at least two games. The Giants will be led by their aggressive defensive front line and backfield, which allowed the league’s lowest amount of touchdowns to opponents in 2016. The Giants defensive backfield had a total of 17 interceptions last season. Look for that total to jump up, since the Giants have arguably one of the best defensive backfields in the league.
The offense added a key veteran in the offseason with Brandon Marshall. Marshall will be a solid WR2 with major upside in the red zone, for both the Giants and your fantasy football team. Look for less targets to go to Odell Beckham with the arrival of Marshall. Beckham should still have a solid season since he is one of the most elite wide receivers currently in the game. Beckham is the only wide receiver in NFL history to start the first three years of his career with over 90 receptions, 1,300 receiving yards and at least 10 touchdowns.
Eli Manning is another year older, but in a league that preserves quarterbacks more than any other position, Manning should have at least a couple more seasons in him to perform at his best. The offensive line will have to improve their play from last year. Giving Manning enough time to pass to his many pass catchers in Beckham, Marshall, Shepard, and Vereen will be vital.
The biggest looming question for the Giants will be their offensive backfield. In 2016, the Giants rushed for only 1,412 yards. Ezekiel Elliott had more yards (1,631) in his rookie season, than all of the Giants rushers had combined. The leading rusher for the Giants was Rashad Jennings with 593 total rushing yards. Jennings is currently a free agent and the Giants are eager to move on with second-year running back Paul Perkins. Perkins averaged 4.1 YPC in 2016, while Rashad Jennings averaged a measly 3.3 YPC.
If the New York Giants can get anything out of their running backs, this should be a team destined for a strong playoff run. With a rock solid defense, ball control will become more important this season. Pounding the rock and smooth play-action passes to Beckham and Marshall downfield should result in another division title for the New York Giants.
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