NFL Analyst Offers Grim Prediction for Start of Giants' 2020 Season
If the Giants are to have any chance whatsoever at a playoff berth this season, they must get off to a fast start and come out with a winning record against their NFC East division opponents.
But if NFL.com analyst Adam Rank's forecast comes anywhere close to fruition, it looks like the Giants are headed for another disappointing year.
Rank has the Giants starting the 2020 campaign winless in their first six games, two of which are against the Cowboys and Washington in Weeks 5 and 6.
But come Week 7, a road game on a short work week--one of three the Giants, the only team in the NFL in this boat, have on their 2020 schedule --Rank has the Giants defeating the Eagles, a team he considers the best in the NFC East.
That is an interesting prediction considering how much the Giants have struggled on the road at Philadelphia. New York is 38-98 on the road against the Eagles in the regular season and has not won a regular-season game on the Eagles' home turf since October 27, 2013, when they eked out a 15-7 victory.
But in staying positive, Rank's forecasted win over the Eagles on the short week and on the road should mark the first of a three-game winning streak for the Giants, a streak that which would include victories over Tampa Bay (or is that Tompa Bay?) on Monday Night Football at home and Washington on the road on the quick turnaround.
The Giants' final two forecasted wins, according to Rank, should come in Weeks 14 and 15 against the Cardinals (who beat the Giants last year) and the Browns, both home games. That would bring the Giants' 2020 record to 6-10 for the year and 2-4 in the NFC East, neither good enough for a playoff berth.
While that 6-10 forecast might be disappointing to Giants fans who put any stock in schedule predictions done before rosters are set, it's important not to lose sight of the big picture.
The Giants are starting from scratch with a new coaching staff and a defense with several new faces (unlike the offense, which, while getting a few new faces, remains primarily intact from last year).
While it's certainly possible for teams with new coaching staffs to take the league by surprise, the main objective and expectation for the Giants should be a steady improvement throughout the season.
To expect the Giants to push for a playoff berth might be asking for a bit much (though again, that's why teams line up and play the games).
But if the Giants, in their first season under Joe Judge, can show progress, can keep the games competitive and grow as a team, that will undoubtedly be a step in the right direction given the unusual off-season and the surrounding circumstances.