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Garden State Gridiron - Week 13, 2020

Week 13 Roundup of New Jersey NFL Football

GIANTS PREVIEW

The Giants opened the week as 9.5-point road underdogs to the Seattle Seahawks. Seattle is coming off an impressive performance against Philadelphia and are motivated to maintain their lead in a tight NFC West. Russel Wilson is having one of the best years of his career and is one of the top candidates for this year’s MVP award. The Giants defense will have their hands full with the Seahawks dynamic offense. One-on-one matchups between James Bradberry and DK Metcalf will be exciting to watch and could determine the outcome of this game. 

An underrated matchup to watch will be Seattle’s All-Pro linebackers, Bobby Wagner and KJ Wright, in coverage against Evan Engram. The dynamic tight end had one of the best games of his career last week against Cincinnati and will be looking to build on that performance. Wagner and Wright have dominated their positions since the “Legion of Boom” days and continue to be the heart of the Seahawks’ defense. The 45.5 Over/Under and large spread do not instill a ton of confidence in the Giants’ offense, but if Engram can separate in coverage, he could be a difference-maker in this game.

JETS PREVIEW

The Jets opened this week as 8.5-point home underdogs to the Las Vegas Raiders in what may be their best remaining chance to pick up a victory this season. The Raiders have the 2nd worst win-loss record on the Jets’ remaining schedule and are coming off their most embarrassing loss of the season. Derek Carr literally gave the game to the Atlanta Falcons through his four turnovers, three of which were fumbles. Despite the team’s winning record, Carr is having one of the worst seasons of his career and this could be one of the final games he plays in a Raiders uniform.

The 46.5 Over/Under reflects the struggles of both offenses involved in this matchup. Both quarterbacks have been very inconsistent, but so have the defenses. Whichever team is able to find some sort of rhythm will hold the advantage in this game. Raiders running back Josh Jacobs (assuming he is active) compared to the Jets’ Frank Gore is likely the largest point of difference between the two offenses and some explosive plays from Jacobs can sustain drives and break this game open for the Raiders. Quinnen Williams will need to have another huge game to keep Jacobs, and the score, in check.

EAGLES PREVIEW

The Eagles opened this week as 7.5-point road underdogs to the Green Bay Packers. The last time these two teams played each other, Philadelphia came away with an upset victory 34-27 in week 4 of 2019. The Eagles’ victory came on the backs of their two leading rushers, Miles Sanders and Jordan Howard, who combined for 187 total yards on the day. Howard led the team with three total touchdowns. Philadelphia was also spared last season when Packers’ star wide receiver Devante Adams left the game early with a toe injury while he was on pace for over 200 receiving yards for the game.

This time around, Philadelphia is in a much worse place than they were a year ago. The team has struggled to find any sort of rhythm on offense and Carson Wentz has not played well all season. Early indications are that Philadelphia will attempt to replicate their winning strategy from last season. The Eagles signed Jordan Howard to their practice squad following his release from Miami a couple of weeks ago. On Wednesday, they designated Howard as one of their four protected members of the practice squad, which shows that there is a good chance he is elevated to the active roster for game day.

The Packers have continued to struggle in rushing defense. They are, once again, one of the worst teams in the league in opponents' yards/rush. Those rushing attempts per game are down considerably because the Packers have had success getting out to early leads in most games. With opponents playing from behind, they are pressured to pass, which plays into the strength of the Packers’ defense. Aaron Rodgers leads the lead in passing touchdowns and passer rating and is well on his way to another possible MVP campaign.

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