After passing a tough test in the Cincinnati Bengals, the Giants look to move their win streak to five games in Week 11 against the Chicago Bears. The Bears have dug themselves a hole this year standing at 2-7 which is last in the NFC North. However, the Giants should not be laid back in this one as the Bears’ record doesn’t show how good this team can be.
With that in mind, here are the 3 Keys to Victory for Big Blue in Week 11:
Protect Eli Manning
The biggest challenge for the Giants today will certainly be stopping the Bears’ lethal pass rush. They have had 11 sacks in the last three games, nine of them coming in the last two. The Giants have been protecting Eli relatively well in the past few weeks giving him clean pockets to hit his receivers. However, they are a little banged up as Justin Pugh is still nursing a sprained MCL and his replacement, Brett Jones, was ruled out this week with a calf injury. So, there may be a gap in the that O-Line that the Bears will try to exploit. The Giants need to dig deep and halt the pass rush, or Manning could be taking a beating today. If they can keep him upright, though, he should take advantage of a banged up Bears’ secondary.
Pressure Jay Cutler
Pressure has been stellar from thisNew York Giants’ defense in the past few weeks as they consistently make the opposing quarterback scramble, and in turn, force mistakes. This week there is no better QB to do this to than the Bears’ Jay Cutler. Cutler is a true pocket passer and can do harm if well protected. However, he is known for making ill-advised passes when scrambling. Take last week against the Bucs, for example, where he threw two interceptions and had to throw the ball away numerous times. Defensive ends, Olivier Vernon and Jason Pierre-Paul, have been relentless off the line, and if the Giants want to that early momentum, their priority should be to get Cutler to panic. The secondary, then, should get some chances at making a few plays.
This isn’t a key on a certain matchup or specific player on the Giants, but instead, for the team as a whole. Everything is swinging in the Giants’ favor this week as they play at home against a team that is struggling to get tallies in the win column. The team must also be aware that they play an even worse opponent in the Cleveland Browns next week on the road. Some can speculate and say the Giants can ease up and focus on the final division games coming up. On the contrary, the Giants need to keep their foot on the gas pedal and not let up. They have been playing hard these past few weeks and it has been paying off. By keeping the intensity and competitiveness at the same level and not worrying about the records of their opponents, the team will be in the right state to take these “easy” wins instead of scaring fans.