By far the most satisfying point of the Jacksonville Jaguars 2014 campaign was the exciting comeback win against the New York Giants. I was fortunate enough to attend that game with one of my close friends (a lifelong Giants fan) and the outcome couldn’t have been more perfect.
The Jaguars second preseason game won’t have the same kind of weight to it, but it will still bring back fond memories to see the Jags line up against Tom Coughlin’s squad.
To get some intel on the Giants heading into Saturday, we pinged our friends over at GMen HQ and asked editor Chris Schisler a few questions. Here’s what he had to say:
1. The New York Giants have had a knack for coming out of nowhere and winning the Super Bowl in recent years. Is this the type of team that could make another deep playoff run?
"It doesn’t look like it. With a questionable offensive line and a more questionable defense this is a team that worries me going into the season. The Giants do have a history of improbable runs but in those two seasons the team had the goods.I’m not saying the Giants don’t have their fair share of talent. Eli Manning is a franchise quarterback with plenty of weapons around him. Manning and Coughlin have certainly proved the doubters wrong in the past too.But this is a young team with many problem areas on the roster. The quarterback and coach may have a winning history but this current team doesn’t."
2. Eli Manning’s new contract has been a point of discussion in the last week or so – how do the fans and the people around the organization feel about giving Eli another huge contract that might make him the highest paid player in the game?
"I don’t think people are seeing this for what it is. You get lost in all the highest paid hoopla and you forget it is about market value. In a league where guys like Ryan Tannehill and Cam Newton get mega contracts, a two time Super Bowl MVP, with three 4,000 yard seasons is going to get that ultimate deal.At the end of the day the Giants have nothing without Manning under center. He is worth every penny to this organization.A massive long-term contract will actually help the Giants. The first couple of seasons will be broken down in cap friendly portions; ultimately the contract will be restructured down the road no matter what. Manning will get his money and the Giants will do it in a way that doesn’t cripple the franchise moving forward."
3. Jason Pierre-Paul figured to be the primary pass rusher along the Giants’ defensive line. Who is the team counting on now to pressure the quarterback?
"Well it looks like it will be a team effort. Damontre Moore, Kerry Wynn and Robert Ayers have had a strong training camp from all accounts. Don’t count out Owamagbe Odighizuwa either.I think Steve Spagnuolo will fire up some blitzing when needed. Devon Kennard, the Giants second year outside linebacker is a guy to watch with that."
4. Which rookies have flashed in camp and should be players to key in on as the Giants take on the Jags?
"Ereck Flowers looks good. Flowers had a penalty in his first preseason game but other than that he looked great. Flowers is a bright spot of hope for the offensive line that is a major worry for the team.Odighizuwa looks strong at the defensive end position. He is a physical specimen with tons of talent.But I have two undrafted free agents that I’d love to see get a shot. First, Cole Farrand is a tackling machine out of Maryland. Secondly Akeem Hunt has a Percy Harvin like skill set."
5. It’s only the second preseason game, but how long do you expect the starters on offense and defense to be on the field, and how do you expect the first few quarters to shake out?
"It depends on their performance. Manning was only supposed to be out there one drive in their first game and he started the second quarter. The Giants want to get something going after looking horrible last week.I think you’ll see the starters for most of the preseason. There is no reason to expect that the starters will get less time in the second game. This is a team that needs the preseason because it clearly isn’t in sync yet.It depends on which Giants team shows up. Remember last season you got both in one game. The good Giants were up 21-0. The bad Giants lost to the Jaguars 25-24."
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