New York Giants vs. Minnesota Vikings
Date and Time: Monday, October 3, 2016, 8:30 p.m. ET
Location: U.S. Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, MN
Week 4 NFL Odds at BookMaker.eu: Vikings -4, 43
Giants vs. Vikings TV Coverage: ESPN
There was some interesting line movement leading up to last week’s kick against Washington that saw the GMEN fall from -5 to -3 and then back up to -3.5 before the game was taken off the board. After NY stormed out to a 14-3 lead halfway through the first quarter and the Skins routinely settling for field goals instead of touchdowns, those backing the Redskins were certainly crying in their beers.
Then for the first time this season, the pass defense failed as Kirk Cousins went on to throw for 296 yards and two touchdowns to help lead 0-2 Washington to the surprising 29-27 outright win spoiling the plans of anyone thinking the Giants were going 16-0. In retrospect, the loss couldn’t have come at a better time with Ben McAdoo’s squad set to hit the road for a gruesome two game roady that takes them through Minnesota and Green Bay. Complacency might have crept in had they reached 3-0. Now you know the Giants will be locked in 100 percent.
No, the Vikings offense hasn’t been a world beater. Heck, it hasn’t even been above average! That said, it doesn’t need to be as relentless and nasty with Everson Griffen and his mates forcing turnovers and putting points on the scoreboard themselves.
Fantasy talking heads from across the country were on top of their soap boxes preaching to bench the Vikings defense in Carolina last week. That move blew up in the face of whoever did as such after Minny went into the defending NFC champs house and picked Cam Newton off three times. To add insult to injury, they sacked him eight times and just to rub some salt in it, tallied a safety as well as a special teams score. Minnesota isn’t going the orthodox route of winning ball games, but it’s “MO” is certainly working nonetheless.
Matchup to Watch
This is an enormous prime time matchup for the Giants to prove the moves made in the offseason to shore up the defense have paid off. Minnesota’s offense is weak to say the least, but it’s done what it needs to take advantage of the fantastic field position given to it just about every time it steps onto the field.
The Vikings defense just made a potent Carolina offense look like a bunch of chumps. A week removed from going off for 108 yards and two touchdowns against the 49ers defense, Kelvin Benjamin was goose egged on just one target.
Eli Manning is going to have his hands full with this defense. In order for the Giants to have a shot in a likely low scoring game, NY’s defense must rise to the occasion. If it’s able to limit its own turnovers, it will compete when you take into account that Minny’s offense is averaging just 14.0 points per game.
Giants vs. Vikings Free Picks
I’m not about to get in the way of this Vikings squad right now. It’s firing on all cylinders both mentally and physically, and I’ve never been one to believe Manning has the mental makeup to beat the best of the best. Minnesota has already taken down the Packers and the Panthers, two perceived favorites to win the NFC. I’ve liked what I’ve seen from NY early on, but just don’t think it’s at a point where it can go into a team’s house that’s been working towards winning a Super Bowl for two-plus years.
Still, I don’t foresee the GMEN rolling over in this one either. Minnesota is pretty solid, but it has its faults. Mainly on the offensive side of the ball, and the Giants would love nothing better than to flex their new defensive muscles and turn this into a defensive grind fest exactly like their first two wins of the season turned out to be. The under has cashed against the odds at BookMaker.eu in eight of Minnesota’s last 11 home games, as well as in four of their last five.
Giants vs. Vikings ATS Pick: Under 43 at BookMaker.eu
Giants vs. Vikings Score Prediction: Vikings 16 – Giants 13