Week 10 Tale Of The Tape: New York Giants At San Francisco 49ers
- QuarterbackIt’s all falling apart for the Giants, as they have just one win, and the only teams they have outperformed are the winless 49ers and Cleveland Browns. The chances for a win are better this week since they play San Francisco, but head coach Ben McAdoo indicates he could make a change at quarterback and sit Eli Manning. If he does, rookie Davis Webb might be a better choice than former Jet Geno Smith.The Niners are likely to play newly acquired Jimmy Garoppolo at some point, but there are a number of reasons it won’t be at this point. The biggest is that Garoppolo is still new to the system, and the San Francisco nomenclature is not even close to what the quarterback was used to in New England. C.J. Beathard is not ready for prime time, but he likely gets the start.
- OffenseThe Giants were a playoff team a year ago and challenged the Cowboys for the top spot in the division. One of the reasons for that was the explosive play at the WR position, and that was keyed by Odell Beckham Jr. Injuries have robbed the Giants of big plays from the WR crew. The running game has lacked talent, power and speed – with the exception of one game against the Broncos.The Niners may not have won a game this year, but they appear to be a better offensive team than the Giants. RB Carlos Hyde has rushed for 494 yards with a 4.0 yards per carry mark and four rushing touchdowns. While Pierre Garcon (neck) is on the IR list, Marquise Goodwin and tight end George Kittle (leg) are at least capable receivers, and they would benefit by having Garoppolo in the lineup.
- DefenseThe Giants have fallen apart on defense after their resurgence a year ago. After giving up 51 points to the Rams in Week Nine, there are legitimate questions about whether they will play hard the rest of the season or they will give in at the first sign of trouble. The defense ranks 30th overall, and that’s similar to the way they played in 2015. De Jason Pierre-Paul has a team-leading 4.5 sacks.The Niners have been near the bottom of the defensive rankings each of the last two years, and while there are legitimate questions about the overall talent level, this unit is trying hard to adapt to the new one-gap scheme that defensive coordinator Robert Saleh has installed. If rookies Solomon Thomas and Reuben Foster(leg) can develop, the Niners have a chance to get much better in the next year.
- Special TeamsThe Giants have struggled badly when it comes to special teams, as they have been outgained significantly in punt- and kickoff-return differential. Aldrick Rosas is just another guy when it comes to FG kicking, having made 8-of-12, including just 2-of-6 from 40-to-49 yards.The Niners have done a credible job on special teams this year, and that speaks well to rookie coach Kyle Shanahan. They have outgained opponents when it comes to punt returns, while veteran PK Robbie Gould has made 18-of-20 FG attempts.
The Niners are struggling to put 60 strong minutes together, but they are playing hard. Nobody can say that about Ben McAdoo’s Giants at this point. This appears to be a good spot for the Niners to pick up their first victory of the season.