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The Minnesota Vikings travel to New York on Sunday looking for their first win on the road against the Giants, who are undefeated under their new starting quarterback, Daniel Jones. Vikings star receiver Stefon Diggs has been having a little bit of trouble with the team lately, giving some credit to rumors about him possibly requesting a trade. This is probably due in part to Kirk Cousins’ disappointing 233 yard, 91.5 rating game in the Vikings 6 to 16 loss to the Bears on Sunday. Daniel Jones, meanwhile, is in the spotlight for this game. He looked great in his first start, but his numbers dwindled in his second start. Minnesota will be the best secondary he has faced, so it will be a great chance for him to prove what he’s capable of. The Vikings are the favorites in this game as their high-powered offense will be hard for the New York defense to reign in. For odds line movement, and full matchup history, see the Minnesota Vikings vs New York Giants Matchup Page.
Date: Sunday, October 6, 2019
Time: 1:00 EST
Location: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey
Vikings: Anthony Harris (Q), Kentrell Brothers (Q), Mackensie Alexander (Q)
Giants: Saquon Barkley (O), Alec Ogletree (Q), Lorenzo Carter (Q), Tae Davis (Q), Wayne Gallman (Q)
Minnesota Vikings Analysis
Despite a 2-2 record, the Vikings have looked strong this year. Dalvin Cook has been phenomenal for them, coming in 2nd in the league for rushing yards with 410, only 1 behind the current leader, Christian McCaffrey. Cook is also tied for 1st in rushing touchdowns with 5 on the season. The other two leaders are Todd Gurley and Mark Ingram, so he’s in good company at the top. However, the Bears revealed the Vikings weakness last Sunday in their 6-16 victory: shut down the running game, and you shut down the Vikings. The Bears held Cook to 35 yards on his 14 carries with one touchdown. Shutting down Dalvin Cook is no easy feat, and it took one of the best rush defenses in the league to do it, but nevertheless the weakness is there and it can be exploited by a good coach.
The Vikings have a great receiving core with Diggs and Thielen. Cousins needs to step up his game, because these are some of the best receivers in the league. Diggs is already hinting at the possibility of asking for a trade. He knows he’s talented, and doesn’t want to waste his years with a quarterback who he’s not fully confident in, which makes sense. This Vikings offense has great potential, they just need to get back in the swing of things against the Giants, which is looking like a definite possibility, as the Giants have a bottom 10 pass defense and a middle-of-the-line rush defense. Middle of the line is not good enough to stop Dalvin Cook, so the possibility of him running over this Giants defense is really high.
Minnesota Vikings Depth Chart
New York Giants Analysis
Under Daniel Jones, the Giants offense has been looking pretty strong. Jones’ opening game was superb. He went 23/36 for 336 yards and 2 touchdowns without throwing an interception, plus another 4 carries for 28 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground. Unfortunately, he didn’t look as good against the Redskins. He went 23/31 for 225 yards and a touchdown, but he threw two interceptions. He also carried the ball 5 times for 33 yards. This reveals a bit of an interesting trend. The Buccaneers pass defense is rated as second worst in the league for average yards allowed per game. The Redskins pass defense is ranked 17 in the same category instead of 31, and Jones had a significantly worse game against the Redskins. So what will happen when he goes up against the Vikings defense, which is ranked at number 9? Not to say his performance in his first week as a starter was a fluke, because I don’t believe it was. Daniel Jones has shown that he has the potential to be great. However, part of being great is putting up big numbers and getting clutch victories against great pass defenses. Jones is going to have an opportunity to prove himself and his potential for greatness against the Vikings on Sunday night.
While the Giants defense hasn’t proven to be the greatest this year, their pass rush hasn’t been too bad. They got 3 sacks on Washington on Sunday and have a total of 10 on the year. The Vikings offensive line has been weak this year, allowing pressure on a minimum of 33.3% of plays each game, or every third play on average. The Giants defense has also been relatively strong against the run, allowing an average 3.9 yards per carry. Whether they’ll be able to handle Dalvin Cook is a tough question, but they’ll definitely be able to put enough pressure on Cousins to mess with the Viking’s passing.
New York Giants Depth Chart
Dalvin Cook is most likely going to have a big game against the Giants. Cook has chewed up rush defenses that are better than what the Giants have, so he should be able to get back to his normal self against them on Sunday. Golden Tate is going to be a receiver to look out for on Sunday as well. He’s coming off of a 4-game suspension, into a promising offense. While the Vikings pass defense is the best that Daniel Jones has had to face this season, he’s good enough to still put some yards and some points on the board, and it’s possible he’ll be doing it through Tate. I think the Vikings are going to be getting most of their yards on the ground, so maybe think twice about starting Diggs or Thielen. However, they’re bound to throw the ball, so it can’t be a bad choice to put one of those two in. They are, after all, elite recievers. I’d start Diggs over Thielen, as Thielen had a rough game last week and may be lacking momentum coming into the game against the Giants.