ESNY previews the upcoming Monday Night Football matchup between the Giants and Buccaneers.
The Giants have won two out of three?
Yes, it’s surprising considering how disastrous the start to the season was. But with a Week 11 Monday Night Football matchup approaching, Big Blue is just 1.5 games out of the final NFC Wild Card spot.
Of course, the upcoming game is against the Super Bowl champion Buccaneers, who are led by the ageless wonder that is Tom Brady. Perfect timing, right?
One of the things we’ve been hearing recently is that Daniel Jones is 0-7 in primetime games for his career. Could the eighth time be the charm? Could he and the Giants force Brady to lose a third consecutive regular-season game for the first time since 2002? Could this team really start to turn a corner en route to a potential playoff berth? Could I be any more tired than I am right now while writing this?
We’ll find out the answers to these questions soon enough (the latter-most, however, is a definite no…I proofread this after I got some sleep though so it’s fine).
New York Giants (3-6) @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-3)
Monday, Nov. 22, 2021 — 8:15 PM EDT
TV: ESPN, ESPN2 (Manningcast)
Notable Game Props
(Courtesy DraftKings Sportsbook)
- Giants Total Points: Over-18.5 (-120), Under-18.5 (-110)
- Buccaneers Total Points: Over-30.5 (-110), Under-30.5 (-120)
- First Team to Score: Giants (+155), Buccaneers (-195)
- Last Team to Score: Giants (+150), Buccaneers (-185)
- Giants Total TDs: Over-1.5 (-160), Under-1.5 (+120)
- Buccaneers Total TDs: Over-3.5 (-120), Under-3.5 (-120)
Player Prop Picks (Courtesy DraftKings Sportsbook)
Daniel Jones Over-243.5 Passing Yards (-115)
Saquon Barkley is expected to be back. Kenny Golladay, Kadarius Toney, Darius Slayton, and Evan Engram are also all playing. Left tackle Andrew Thomas should additionally return from an injured reserve stint.
The last time Daniel Jones had this healthy of a supporting cast was in the Week 4 win over New Orleans when he threw for a career-high 402 yards.
Taking that into consideration along with the fact Tampa Bay is allowing 254.2 passing yards per game (25th in the NFL), Jones hitting the over on this passing-yard total is certainly possible.
Rob Gronkowski Over-30.5 Receiving Yards (-110)
Expect Bucs tight end Rob Gronkowski to rack up significant yardage against a Giants defense that will be missing Logan Ryan.
The Big Blue safety is out for the game following positive COVID-19 tests and would be the one operating in the middle of the field where Gronk would be present.
Julian Love (an inferior option to both Ryan and Xavier McKinney) will likely be responsible for the tight end position on various passing downs, which should lead to Gronk gaining at least 31 yards through the air.
Daniel Jones Over-20.5 Rushing Yards (-115)
Saquon Barkley’s presence should allow Daniel Jones to execute zone-read keepers — defenses will be focused more on Barkley than they would be on Devontae Booker, who started in Saquon’s absence.
In each of the four games in which Barkley was active and healthy for the entire matchup (not counting the Week 5 loss to Dallas when both he and Jones exited due to injury), Jones surpassed 20.5 yards on the ground. He actually averaged 47 rushing yards per game in those four contests.
Players to Watch
The Giants’ primary starting running back is expected to return Monday night after missing four straight games with an ankle injury.
Whether he’ll be on a pitch count or not, Barkley’s presence should help the Giants offense spread the field and provide the necessary assistance for Daniel Jones.
The last full game Barkley played was against the Saints when he racked up 126 scrimmage yards and two touchdowns (52 yards rushing, one rushing score; 74 yards receiving, one touchdown reception).
I’m excited to see what Kadarius Toney can do this Monday night.
He’s due up for a big game (he was targeted just once in the Week 9 win over Las Vegas). And with Barkley and Golladay healthy, the Bucs defense won’t be able to just focus on the rookie wideout, which should free him up to produce.
The last time Toney, Barkley, and Golladay all played a full game with one another (against New Orleans), Toney caught six balls for 78 yards.
The Giants secondary will be dealing with a setback amid the absence of Logan Ryan.
This is never ideal, but it especially isn’t when you must face Tom Brady, Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and Rob Gronkowski.
James Bradberry, Adoree’ Jackson, Xavier McKinney, and Julian Love already needed to step up against a highly talented Tampa offense. Now, their respective duties in the deep part of the field are even more crucial.
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