Giants News | New York Giants –


Presented by

Fact or Fiction: Toughest AFC matchup; Kayvon Thibodeaux's streak


The crew is presented with four statements and must decide whether they are Fact or Fiction.

This is the toughest non-conference game on the Giants' schedule this season

John Schmeelk: Fact - As much of a challenge as the speedy Dolphins posed last week, the Bills are a more complete football team. They also have Josh Allen, who when he is playing his best football, might be the best quarterback in the NFL. His raw physical gifts as a runner and passer are unmatched. The Bills defense is also very well coordinated with good players on all three levels of the defense. Buffalo is also one of the toughest places to visit and win.

Dan Salomone: Fact – Last week in Miami was no vacation, but Josh Allen is 11-1 at Highmark Stadium in his last 12 games with a 102.8 passer rating on 31 touchdowns to 10 interceptions.

Lance Medow: Fact - It's either this game or the one they just played against the Dolphins. Take your pick. One can make a strong case for both, especially how dangerous Miami's offense is with its high volume of explosive plays, thanks to numerous speedsters, but give the Bills the edge for two reasons. First, this game is being played in prime time, a slot that has been an absolute killer for the Giants. Since the start of 2019, they're 1-14 in night games. It also doesn't help that it's on the road in Western New York in a stadium known for its passionate fan base. The second factor is the Buffalo pass rush, which leads the NFL with 21 sacks. Based on Big Blue's offensive line issues, that's not an ideal matchup.

Matt Citak: Fact – Even with all of their recent injuries on defense, the Bills are still one of the most well-rounded teams in the NFL. Heading into this weekend, Buffalo's offense ranks in the top 5 in points and yards, while their defense is not far behind (sixth in points allowed). Josh Allen is one of the top quarterbacks in the league, and the same goes for Stefon Diggs at wide receiver. Simply put, the Bills have talent throughout their entire roster. Sunday's matchup in Orchard Park might be the Giants' toughest game all year, regardless of conference.

The Giants need to force at least two Josh Allen turnovers to win on Sunday night

John Schmeelk: Fact - as dominant as Josh Allen can look, he can also have games where he looks like he is trying to throw the ball to the wrong team. The Bills outplayed the Jets in Week 1, but Josh Allen's three interceptions kept the Jets in the game long enough for a game-winning punt return for a touchdown in overtime. The Giants need to figure out that formula and force Allen into similar mistakes this week if they want a chance to win the game.

Dan Salomone: Fact - Since 2021, the Bills are 10-0 and average 34.5 points in games when Josh Allen has no giveaways. With one turnover, those numbers drop to 12-6 and 28.6 points. With at least two, they go down even further to 5-5 and 23.7 points per game.

Lance Medow: Fact – There's an entirely separate part of the equation that is even more critical. In last Sunday's game against the Dolphins, the Giants recorded their first three turnovers of the season, but they only scored 10 points off those opportunistic plays and given the other break downs, they didn't serve as much of a game changer. It's critical what a team does with takeaways, so there is a caveat tied to this factor.

Matt Citak: Fact – The Giants won the turnover battle against the Dolphins last week, 3-0. Although it didn't help change the outcome of the game, it was encouraging to see the defense force a few turnovers, their first of the year. As defensive coordinator Wink Martindale has said numerous times, turnovers come in bunches. Well, the Giants are going to need one of those bunches again on Sunday. The Bills have turned over the ball just seven times through five games, while their defense leads the league with 13 turnovers forced. The Giants are going to need the defense to come up with a few big plays in order to win.

View rare photos of the all-time series between the New York Giants and Buffalo Bills.

Kayvon Thibodeaux will have a sack for the fourth consecutive week

John Schmeelk: Fiction - The Bills have allowed the fifth-fewest sacks per pass attempt this year (5.14% rate). They have an offensive line that has featured starters in their same position for every game this year. They also have stabilizing veterans at key spots such as center Mitch Morse and left tackle Dion Dawkins. Josh Allen is the other factor. His mobility and strength to escape the rush, can render even the best pass rush moot by escaping the pocket and making an incredible throw down the field. It will be tough to get him to the ground on Sunday night.

Dan Salomone: Fact - He had 12 tackles, three tackles for loss, a sack, forced fumble, and fumble recovery for a touchdown in his only other career road SNF game (12/18/22 at Was.).

Lance Medow: Fiction - Josh Allen has been sacked nine times through the first five games of the season, but a mobile quarterback who looks to run tends to create more opportunities for sacks because they hold onto the ball longer than pocket passers. From that standpoint, he could present some chances for Kayvon Thibodeaux to continue his streak but, at this point, the pass rush is so hit or miss. The Giants have collected only five sacks on the season and haven't created many disruptive plays at the expense of the opposing quarterback. Game flow will also dictate whether this is feasible, especially if New York falls behind early. You can lean toward the run coming to an end.

Matt Citak: Fiction – Thibodeaux has been on a tear in recent weeks with four sacks over the past three games. However, that streak is going to come to an end Sunday night. Josh Allen has been sacked just nine times this season, as his size and athleticism can make it difficult for a defense to get him down. The Bills also have a talented pair of tackles in Dion Dawkins and Spencer Brown, who Pro Football Focus have down for just one combined sack allowed. Thibodeaux might be held without a sack Sunday night but Dexter Lawrence is going to pick up his first of the season.

Deonte Banks will have his first career interception on Sunday

John Schmeelk: Fiction - Deonte Banks has had some very impressive moments in his rookie season, but one thing he needs to improve upon is getting his head turned around to locate the ball. There have been a couple of plays where he has made contact with the receiver while face guarding that could have been called pass interference this year, but no flag has been thrown. He will have to improve his technique in this area if he wants to start grabbing interceptions.

Dan Salomone: Fact – Turnovers come in bunches, and the Giants had their first three last week. However, it might be tough this week in Buffalo, where Allen has yet to throw an interception this season.

Lance Medow: Fiction - Much like the pass rush, there hasn't been an overwhelming amount of takeaways through the first five games of the season as they didn't create a turnover until last week against the Dolphins. In Wink Martindale's scheme, perimeter corners don't have many shots at interceptions because they're asked to go mano-a-mano with wide receivers as the focus is more on the man you're defending as opposed to the ball. Although Josh Allen has taken his fair share of risks, since throwing three interceptions in Week 1 against the Jets, his decision-making has been much better and he's not the same quarterback that was plagued by red zone turnovers in 2022.

Matt Citak: Fiction – Banks has had a solid start to his NFL career with four passes defensed in his first five games. The rookie allowed just three receptions for 15 yards against Miami's strong passing attack last week. He seems to be improving each time he steps onto the field, which is exactly what you want to see out of a first-year cornerback. According to PFF, he has yet to allow a 20+ yard pass play, which will be put to test this weekend with a likely matchup against Bills deep threat Gabe Davis. Although Allen can be intercepted, evidenced by his five picks already this season, here's thinking Banks won't do it. The rookie will put another solid coverage performance together Sunday night, but if anyone is going to intercept Allen, it will be one of the safeties, perhaps on a tipped pass.

View photos of the Giants on the practice field ahead of the Week 6 matchup against the Buffalo Bills.


Giants App

Download the Giants' official app for iPhone, iPad and Android devices

Related Content