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Cover 3: Must-travel road game of 2018?

Giants.com looks at the opposing stadiums that the team will travel to during the 2018 season.

With summer vacations and road trips getting underway, our Giants.com staff debates which is the one away game a Giants fan should try to make it to this season.

JOHN SCHMEELK: I love this question and I'm going to approach it a little differently. The Giants play the NFC East nearly every season so I am immediately going to rule out all three of those games even though they might be some of the better matchups. The Giants played in San Francisco last year, and it is also a long flight, a night game, and an expensive city so I'm going to rule that out. Charlotte is a fun city but another place the Giants have been there a few times with a stadium that has been around a while. I could also see that game be a grind it out affair.

The two AFC road games, two venues Giants fans won't be able to experience for another 8 years if the scheduling format continues the way it is now, are at Indianapolis and Houston. The Giants have played in Indianapolis a few times, including a fairly memorable game in February of 2012, so I think some fans have been there already. I love Indianapolis, but it will be December around the holidays and it will be freezing cold. Pass.

That leaves Houston and Atlanta as the two remaining games. The Texans game in Week 2 is their home opener so there should be a lot of juice in the building. All indications are that Deshaun Watson will be playing and he is as electric a player as there is in the league. DeAndre Hopkins, JJ Watt, and Jadaveon Clowney are no slouches either. Houston is also a fun town, and the Astros play on the Saturday before the Giants play. That's a two for one special! This should be a real consideration but it wouldn't be my final choice. Sorry, Houston is a very close runner-up.

I would go to Atlanta. The new stadium looks tremendous, and with their low concession prices you can gorge yourself on food and drink without worrying about running low on cash. The Falcons also have one of the best groups of skilled offensive players in the game. Matt Ryan is terrific. Julio Jones is one of the best receivers in the league, and now he gets to play with the guy I thought was the best receiver in the draft in Calvin Ridley. They have two excellent running backs in Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman and a good offensive line to run behind. The game could become a shootout and I think the experience will be the best for Giant fans that want to travel this year.

DAN SALOMONE: Ever since I saw the movie "The Rock" and went on a family vacation there as a kid, San Francisco has been one of my favorite cities in the world. And I've been to Duluth, Minnesota. I know that Santa Clara, where the 49ers play now, is 45 miles and a boat ride away from Alcatraz, but what's that after a cross-country flight if you're coming from the East Coast?

As for the football aspect, the Giants come out of their bye week with a Monday night game against the 49ers on Nov. 12. By then, the Jimmy Garoppolo mania will either be in full force or will have died down. The former Patriots protégé is 7-0 as a starter, including 5-0 down the stretch for a 49ers team that was 1-10 before he took over. The man snapping him the ball will likely be Weston Richburg, the Giants' former second-round pick who signed with the 49ers this offseason. Those will be some of the storylines in my personal favorite rivalry involving the Giants. These historic franchises have met eight times in the postseason, including twice with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line. We'll see if these two teams can build the rivalry back up as new eras begin on both sides. Clang, clang, clang.

LANCE MEDOW: We'll eliminate the three divisional games because they visit the Eagles, Cowboys and Redskins every season so why would I make a case for a Giants' fan to go out of their way to attend one of those games when they can essentially pick any season to do that and they can also see any of those three opponents when they come to MetLife Stadium. That leaves five choices: Houston, Indianapolis, Carolina, Atlanta and San Francisco. If you're looking for the best combination of destination and intriguing matchup, I think San Francisco is the winner. With Jimmy Garoppolo now under center, the Niners are a team on the rise and with Kyle Shanahan entering his second year as the head coach, you figure he's much more comfortable in his position given he's had enough time to put his stamp on the team. Throw in the fact that it's a Monday night game so you can make a lengthy weekend out of the trip and it's the first game off the bye so the Giants would have played half their season by then giving you a much better feel for the team, San Francisco is by far the ideal road game to attend.

Carolina is appealing because there's several ties between the two teams including Dave Gettleman and Mike Shula but they're not playing in the game so those storylines only go so far. If I had to rank the five games I'd go with the following order: San Francisco, Atlanta (another Monday night game and one of the best offenses in the league), Carolina, Houston (Deshaun Watson and J.J. Watt both coming off season ending injuries in 2017 but this game is very early in the season – Week 3), Indianapolis (may conflict with your holiday plans)

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