Tale Of The Tape: New York Giants At Kansas City Chiefs
- QuarterbackThere will be a lot of panic surrounding the Giants following their horrific 38-0 loss to the Panthers and their 0-3 start. If cooler heads can prevail and they can have a couple of decent drives, they could turn the situation around. Eli Manning is off to an awful start, but he has the talent to turn things around if he can get just a bit of production from his offensive line.If any team understands what the Giants are going through, it is the Chiefs. They suffered through a 2-14 season a year ago, yet they are 3-0 now. Alex Smith is executing Andy Reid’s offense with poise and confidence and he has a strong enough arm to make tough throws under pressure. Smith is not a superstar, but he will manage the game quite well.
- OffenseThe Giants have not had a semblance of a running game this season and that can’t continue if they have any hope of turning their season around. The offensive line has been miserable and gave up seven sacks in the bludgeoning at Carolina. Victor Cruz and Rueben Randle can turn things around, but it won’t happen unless Manning gets time from his blockers.The Chiefs have a legitimate breakaway running threat in Jamaal Charles, and if the Giants don’t account for his speed he will punish them. Reid is learning that while he has a big-name receiver in Dwayne Bowe, he is not as reliable as Donnie Avery, who caught seven passes for 141 yards in the Week Three victory over Philadelphia. The overrated Bowe caught one.
- DefenseThe defense has been the pride and joy of the Giants since Lawrence Taylor’s rookie season in 1981, yet this unit has been poor since the second half of last season. If Tom Coughlin and Perry Fewell can’t affect an immediate turnaround, they won’t be able to overcome their poor start. The front seven has been getting pushed around with regularity, and that is not Giants football.The Chiefs are probably licking their chops at their chance to line up and slug it out with the Giants. Kansas City has an excellent pass rush, as explosive outside linebacker Justin Houston is coming off a 4.5 sack game against Michael Vick and the Eagles. Cornerback Sean Smith and safety Eric Berry both registered interception against Philadelphia.
- Special TeamsThe Giants have had decent special teams in the past, but their coverage teams have been the worst in the league through the early going. Speedy David Wilson could make a difference as a returner, but his confidence appears sapped as a result of early-season fumbling problems.The Chiefs have been slightly below average in special teams coverage, but they are still quite a bit better than the Giants. Ryan Succop is a good but not great kicker. He has made 5-of-7 FG attempts this season. Dustin Colquitt is a solid directional punter who can change field position in his team’s favor.
This game seems like a one-sided matchup in favor of the undefeated Chiefs. However, it is still early in the season and the Chiefs are not world beaters despite their record. The Giants have problems, but they could begin to turn their season around here. Upset alert. -Steve Silverman, CBS Local Sports contributor