By Buck Coquillette
If you were to tell an NFL fan before the season began that the best game of Week 8 was not the 49ers versus the Rams or the Packers versus the Bills, they would have thought you were crazy. Likewise, they would think that you were insane if you were to say that it was the New York Giants (6-1) versus the Seattle Seahawks (4-3). These teams, two of the worst projected teams before the season started, have found their groove and are winning games.
After winning two straight against NFC west competition, the Seahawks have found their groove. Geno Smith has even more momentum heading into this game, with a completion percentage of 74% and a passer rating of 105.5 last week against the Chargers. Running back Kenneth Walker III had 167 yards and two touchdowns, one of which being an impressive 74-yard run. To win the game, the Giants will have to find a way to stop this exceptional rookie. Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin had two scores and 67 yards last week, adding him to the scary receiver room with DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett.
The Seahawks defense held the Chargers to only 53 rushing yards last week and look to continue that trend versus a good Giants run game. The secondary does need some work, letting up almost 300 passing yards last week too. Look for cornerback Tariq Woolen again this week and the team tackling leader, linebacker Jordan Brooks.
The Giants, who have managed to win six games this season so far, look to stay in the win column. Quarterback Daniel Jones has led this team with five winning drives this season, the most through Week 7 since 1950. This season, Jones has had 1,223 passing yards and 6 touchdowns so far and has impressed with his legs, having 343 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns. This NFC offensive player of the week looks to take on the improving Seahawks defense. Even though the offensive line is struggling, running back Saquon Barkley has looked like his pre-injuries self with 726 yards (2nd in the league). The wide receiver core has been very diverse, not one receiver has more than 200 yards, but five have more than 90.
The Giant’s defense has only let up 18.6 points per game (6th) and is one of two teams that have not let up more than 24 points in a game. However, they only have three interceptions on the year and let up 5.7 yards per attempt (last in the NFL). Safety Julian Love leads the team with 50 tackles, 1 interception, and 1 forced fumble. The Giants are 28th in the league for rushing yards allowed per game, so we will see how they do against a dangerous Kenneth Walker.
Can the Giants continue to win games despite their weaker defense and their fourth-quarter-heavy offense? Will Geno Smith continue to be a threat in the pocket this week? These two hot teams will face off this Sunday at 4:25.