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3 Keys to a Giants' victory against the Chargers

Posted Oct 5, 2017

Giants.com gives three keys for the Giants to come away with a win on Sunday::


Play the next game. That is all the winless Giants can do.

The first quarter of the season has diverged greatly from expectations, both from inside and outside of the organization, but there is still plenty of football to be played. The second quarter begins this Sunday when the Los Angeles Chargers, who are also 0-4, come to MetLife Stadium for the first time.

“There’s not a magic trick to get a win,” quarterback Eli Manning said. “There’s not any outside help. It’s you keep working hard, you keep preparing and you go out there and you make plays on Sunday that will give ourselves a chance to win.”

Here are three ways the Giants can do so:

1. FUNDAMENTALLLY SOUND FOOTBALL

It’s October, but the 0-4 Giants are going back close to square one this week as if it were late July. While they won’t be able to replay their first four games, coach Ben McAdoo is stripping things down and stressing the fundamentals as the team looks for its first win. From subpar tackling to dropped passes, it’s all about the simple things in football.

“You don’t want to go back into a training camp mode, but you want to get pretty close,” McAdoo said. “Just make it simple. Let players run, hit, tackle, block, catch -- do what they do best.”



2. KEEP ELI UPRIGHT

After allowing eight sacks in the first two games, the Giants haven’t given up any in their last two outings. They’ve done so despite playing musical chairs on the offensive line, which could continue this week with center Weston Richburg in the concussion protocol. However, it’s no coincidence that keeping Manning upright led to back-to-back weeks of scoring 20 points or more, something they were unable to do for eight consecutive games beforehand.

Sunday will be a tough test against Joey Bosa, the 2016 Defensive Rookie of the Year, and Melvin Ingram, who is tied for second in the NFL with 5.5 sacks.

“They both get after it,” said Justin Pugh, who moved from left guard to right tackle the last two weeks in place of Bobby Hart. “They’re multiple. They do different things. They have a variety of rushes that they’re very good at. It’s probably good for us. We’ve gone against Olivier Vernon and JPP (Jason Pierre-Paul) during camp, so our tackles should be ready. Then, go out there and put a score on the board early is our goal.”

3. FINISH STRONG ON DEFENSE

As the saying goes in football, it’s not about how you start, it’s about how you finish. For the Giants, the team has done neither particularly well in the 0-4 start. They are one of only two teams in the NFL yet to score in the first quarter, the other being the Buffalo Bills. The offense has done most of its damage in the fourth quarter, but the defense has been unable to close out games, particularly these last two weeks when the Giants lost on last-second field goals after squandering late leads.

“I don’t talk about what-ifs,” linebacker and defensive captain Jonathan Casillas said. “Offense has started to figure it out, and now defense, we have to start figuring it out.”