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Is Barkley The Answer for the 2018 New York Giants?

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BetAmerica Staff

August 13th, 2018

In 2016, the New York Giants went 11-5 SU and 9-6-1 ATS which led to their installation as favorites to win the NFC East the following year after the league handed down a 6-game suspension to Dallas RB Ezekiel Elliott. We know what happened next. The Giants lost WR Odell Beckham Jr. early. Then, they imploded. Eli Manning and company cobbled together a brutal 3-13 SU and 7-9 ATS campaign in 2017. But with Odell back and Saquon Barkley in town, can the 2018 New York Giants return to form and challenge for the NFC East? Will they be a competent NFL betting team again?

Does Eli have the protection he needs? Two-time Super Bowl winning quarterback Eli Manning was dreadful last season. The 37-year-old couldn’t get passes off. When he did get passes off, he couldn’t get them to open receivers. Manning’s horrible 2017 started when Odell Beckham Jr. fractured his ankle.

Beckham Jr. should be healthy this season. Even if he isn’t, the Giants will be okay in the skills position department. The reason is because the Giants didn’t get fancy. They drafted the best player in the NFL Draft. It just so happened that the best player in this year’s draft was running back Saquon Barkley. New York has gone on long enough with a litany of terrible tailbacks for what seems like a generation. The arrival of Barkley signals the dawn of a new beginning.

New head coach Pat Shurmur said that he’s going to utilize Saquon in the rushing attack and passing attack. With Saquon becoming the biggest part of the 2018 New York Giants offense, Beckham Jr. should return to greatness, albeit with lesser fantasy stats.

That’s a good thing for the Giants’ offense. But the best move the Giants made all off-season was putting together what should be an effective offensive line. Last year’s left tackle, Erick Flowers, is now the right-tackle since Nate Solder was signed away from the New England Patriots to fill the left-tackle position.

The G-Men also drafted UTEP guard Will Hernandez in Round 2. Hernandez could open up truck sized holes for Barkley to rush through. He’ll almost definitely shut down the up-the-middle rush on his side. So, to answer the question posed earlier, Eli Manning has fewer excuses than he did last year with more offensive weapons and a rejiggered offensive line.

Giants defense could bounce back big time The New York Giants’ defense could bounce back bigly this season. First, safety Landon Collins is one of the best safeties in the NFL. Second, cornerback Eli Apple, although he and Collins had major differences last season, could become one of the best cornerbacks in the league.

For both to thrive, the Giants must pressure opposing quarterbacks. This is where the Giants probably improved the most during the off season. The 2018 New York Giants traded for Rams’ outside linebacker Alec Ogletree.

Ogletree was the Ram's top tackler last season. With Ogletree providing pressure on one side and Veronon Olivier providing pressure on the other, the front seven should set things up for Apple and Collins.

New York Giants can win the NFC East It sounds crazy, but the 2018 New York Giants have a real shot of winning the NFC East Division. They're receiving +425 odds in NFC East futures alongside Dallas, with Philadelphia leading the way at -150. The Giants improved mightily on offense. Not only did they add the most electrifying running back to come out of college since Adrian Peterson, but they also picked up one of the better left-tackles in Nate Solder. Drafting Will Hernandez was a stroke of genius. If the move from a 4-3 defense to a 3-4 defense works - a lot of whether it does depends on Ogletree - the Giants won’t be an easy out for anyone in the league. More than anything, they'll be entertaining as hell with ODB and Barkley running wild.
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