Giants vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

Mike Vick and Chip Kelly will open the 2013 season in Washington Monday night. Credit: Getty Images
New Eagles head coach Chip Kelly will get his first crack at the Giants on Sunday.
Credit: Getty Images

The Giants (0-4) and Eagles (1-3) renew an old rivalry on Sunday, but with a touch of change, as this will be new Eagles head coach Chip Kelly’s indoctrination into the Turnpike tilt.

Kelly will bring his new-fangled uptempo spread offense to MetLife Stadium, hoping to cause as much havoc as they’ve done to opponents so far this season.

But no matter the backdrops, the main storyline is two proud franchises who are struggling to break their losing streaks.

Giants wideout Victor Cruz said he doesn’t care how the Giants win, as long as they do it.

“This game’s always intense. Us against Philly is always intense, no matter what the records are, no matter how each team is playing,” said Cruz. “It’s an important game for us no matter what. This game is important in the division. We have to get this victory by any means necessary.”

Three things to watch for …

1. Can Big Blue’s defense catch their breath?

No matter how indignant Giants defensive end Justin Tuck thought the question was, the fact is the Giants have had trouble getting off the field. The Eagles’ uptempo offense thrives on keeping defenses on the field longer than they want, and in turn tiring out defenders, particularly defensive linemen. When asked if he felt it’d be best to try and have a rotating defensive line to keep the unit fresh, Tuck had a terse reply: “Don’t ask me that question. I take offense to that.”

Regardless of pride, it’d be wise for the Giants to have a rotation – providing the Eagles allow it – lest the defensive captain and his unit will have their collective feelings hurt as they watch a lot of green and white jerseys zoom past them.

2. Can the Giants get their offense back on track?

New York averages a puny 15.2 points per game (30th in the league), which won’t cut it against a Philadelphia team that wants to engage in a winner-has-the-ball-last shootout. The Eagles average 24.8 points per game (12th overall in the league). But Giants quarterback Eli Manning has had rousing success against the Eagles lately, especially at home where he’s thrown 13 touchdowns and just two interceptions in his last four home games. Manning’s favorite target, Cruz, has clipped Philadelphia’s secondary basically every chance he’s had and fondly remembers the Eagles as the team he got his big break against a couple of seasons ago. He’ll likely have a big game again, but can the Giants be more than a one-dimensional passing unit? If fellow starting wideout Hakeem Nicks returns to form and running back David Wilson finally flashes his skill set, Big Blue may actually be able to match Philadelphia yard for yard.

3. What’s the difference?

These are two teams who are very similar in their struggles, as both have shown they can start respectable, but fade as the game wanes. The Eagles were right with the Broncos (4-0) last week until halftime, 21-13, before wilting in the second half and eventually getting hammered, 52-20. And save for the 38-0 blanking by Carolina in Week 3, the Giants have been in most games until at least midway into the third quarter. The Eagles own a minus-39 point differential, which computes to 9.8 points per game. The Giants’ point differential stands at a staggering minus-85 points — an average of 21.2 points per game which is next-to-last in the league. If the numbers don’t lie, it means one of these teams will need to show some mettle in the second half and pull away. The only question is which team will it be?

Follow Giants beat writer Tony Williams on Twitter @TBone8.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.