Daniel Wilson took over the popular Xs and Os column for this week in Manav’s stead. Follow him on Twitter.
Fantasy Watch: DeSean Jackson (PHI) and Eli Manning (NYG)
While both of these guys seem like obvious answers, there are compelling answers for both on why this could be a unique week for each of them. Let’s start with our very own DeSean Jackson, who has been having a stellar year as it is, will be looking for a huge comeback after a disappointing performance against the Cowboys last week. Along with that, he’s also Michael Vick’s favorite target this year. While Foles certainly knew he was the #1 option, there’s just nothing like a long bomb out of the hands of Mike Vick if you’re DeSean Jackson.
As for all you Eli Manning owners, you’re just going to have to hope that last week’s win will bring back some of his “mojo”. Getting that elusive first win of the season is always a challenge. Now that Manning finally has that, he should be able to focus more, and overall play a better football game.
Key Matchup: DeSean Jackson vs Corey Webster
Defending DeSean Jackson is a simple, yet challenging task, and it’s something the Giants must do if they plan on beating the Eagles. Corey Webster must contain DeSean Jackson. Once “DJAX” finds his groove in a game, there’s no turning back, he’ll eventually just start burning you time and time again. If you’re a defense at this point, you’ll need a prayer, because and Eagles offense with a hot DeSean is practically unstoppable.
X-Factors: Preventing the Pass Rush (NYG) and The Return of Michael Vick (PHI)
The most important thing the Giants must do is preventing the Eagles pass rush. While nothing about the Eagles defense is good, the Giants offensive line is pretty lousy too. Additionally, Eli Manning never seems to play well when he’s getting pressured in the pocket, as this is when Eli tends to make his worst mistakes. If the Eagles bad defense is able to overcome the bad O-Line of the G-Men, it’s going to be a long day if you’re a Giants fan.
Nick Foles was dreadful last week, and it showed for the Eagles. He missed reads, he panicked under pressure, and he left a lot of big plays on the field. Now, he played well before that, but this offense is just so much more dangerous when Michael Vick is on the field and making good decisions. This team set records during the first four games with Vick under center, and if he’s healthy and ready to go, one can believe that this offense will come out raring to go.
Prediction: Eagles 27, Giants 17
All factors accounted for I predict a ten point win for the Birds. It definitely won’t be the best looking game, but the Eagles should have enough spark to take down a bad Giants team and end this horrendous losing streak at home. After all, the last time the Eagles won a game at the Linc was when the Giants came to Philly last season, so why not end it the same way?