The New York Giants have had two weeks to stew over an embarrassing loss to their in-stadium rivals, the Jets, during Week 10.
In the battle of incompetent MetLife Stadium-based teams, the hapless Jets’ sputtering offense found their footing against the Giants’ miserable defense — which has shown zero improvements under coordinator James Bettcher this season.
The secondary is in shambles and the pass rush is non-existent as evident in their inability to get through the Jets’ sieve-like offensive line.
Their next test this Sunday comes in the form of the Chicago Bears, who have a struggling offense of their own behind misfiring quarterback Mitch Trubisky.
The third-year passer was initially deemed questionable for Week 12 due to a hip pointer injury, but he was a full go at practice on Wednesday and is expected to be a go against the Giants.
Now, something has to give.
Either the Giants defense finds the right stuff or Trubisky looks like the talent the Bears expected to get when they drafted him second overall in 2017.
In nine games this season, Trubisky is completing just 62.4-percent of his passes — including a miserable 10-for-21 outing two weeks ago against the Philadelphia Eagles for 44-percent — with nine touchdowns and four interceptions.
While the numbers aren’t egregiously bad, the Bears’ offense just isn’t putting up points. They’ve scored 20 points or fewer in seven of nine games this season.
Only the Washington Redskins have scored fewer points than the Bears in the NFC this season.
But the Giants haven’t shown an ability to stop most of their opponents regardless of their offensive standing. They let the Jets’ offense score 27 of their season-high 34 points after averaging just 12 points per game entering Week 10.
Bettcher’s unit ranks 29th in the NFL in scoring defense, 26th in total yards allowed and 23rd in sacks.
Meanwhile, the Giants’ offense continues to struggle to find its footing under head coach Pat Shurmur — who seems to be handcuffing the promising core of Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley.
While Shurmur’s utilization of Barkley was an issue during the early portions of the season, now there is a concern if there is something physically wrong with the star running back.
He’s been a non-factor since returning from a high ankle sprain earlier than expected. Barkley had just 28 yards on 14 carries against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 9 before the Jets completely shut him down for just a single yard on 13 carries before picking up a shoulder injury.
Barkley was not on the team’s injury report this week, but his every move will be under the microscope for the rest of the season.
Should he continue to struggle, the Giants will turn to Jones more and more.
The rookie quarterback has looked the part of franchise quarterback throughout his first handful of games in the NFL minus an inability to hold onto the football when hit.
Jones put up his second 300-plus-yard and four-touchdown passing performance in three games in Week 10. A fellow rookie, wide receiver Darius Slayton, is emerging as his favorite target in the process as the two hooked up for 10 receptions, 102 yards, and two touchdowns against the Jets.
He’ll also have Sterling Shepard back in the mix as the wide receiver has made it out of concussion protocol to play in his first game since Week 5.