Giants.com writers debate the best tight end the Giants will face this season in Fact or Fiction:
1. The Giants will have more than three sacks on Monday night.
JOHN SCHMEELK: Fiction - More than three is an awful lot to ask, but I do think the Giants pass rush will ultimately be the difference maker in this game. The Bengals offensive line has struggled this year. Only two teams have allowed their quarterback to get sacked more than the 25 times Andy Dalton has been taken down this season. The Giants will have to pressure him most of the game, because if he has time, Dalton has a ton of weapons. If the Giants don't get consistent pressure, they will be hard pressed to slow down the Bengals' offense and win the game. Three is probably a more realistic number.
LANCE MEDOW: Fiction - The Bengals have surrendered 25 sacks (tied for third-most in the NFL) in eight games this season, so pass protection has been an issue and they're allowing just over three per game. With that being said, it's important to put that total in perspective. Andy Dalton was sacked seven times in Week 1 by the Jets, but the offensive line has given up 18 sacks in the last seven games combined and more than three in a game just twice (none since Week 5).
The Giants have just 11 sacks in eight contests and have yet to collect more than three in a game. Although this is an attractive matchup on paper, it doesn't mean this will be a breakout performance for the pass rush. The Giants have been much more effective in collecting quarterback hits on a consistent basis. I can see that number being higher than three, but as far as sacks go, more than three is going to be tough.
2. Tyler Eifert is currently the best tight end the Giants will face this season.
JOHN SCHMEELK: Fiction - Tyler Eifert is an excellent football player and he could be the X-factor for the Bengals offense on Monday, but he is not the best tight end the Giants will face this year. That award goes to Jordan Reed, who has emerged as one of the premier receiving tight ends in the NFL. Reed is a superior athlete and is impossible to cover given his combination of size, speed and athleticism. Eifert will present a similar challenge on Monday night, but he still isn't as good as Reed. The Giants linebackers and safeties will have to watch him at all times, especially in the red zone, where he is one of Andy Dalton's favorite targets.
LANCE MEDOW: Fiction - The Giants have already played a number of versatile tight ends this season, including Jason Witten, Coby Fleener, Jordan Reed, Kyle Rudolph and Zach Ertz, and they still have Chicago's Zach Miller and the Lions' Eric Ebron on the horizon. Tyler Eifert missed the first six games of the season due to ankle and back injuries and quickly returned to Pro Bowl form in Week 8 when he had nine catches for 102 yards and a touchdown against the Redskins in London. He's one of the best two-way tight ends in the NFL because of his blocking ability and finished tied for second in the league in 2015 with 13 touchdowns.
Eifert belongs near the top of the list, but I think the best tight end the Giants will face this season is the Redskins' Jordan Reed given he's essentially a wide receiver in a tight end's body. Reed's quickness, elusiveness and the ability to stretch the field make him extremely unique and the stats show he's given the Giants quite a few headaches in recent history.
3. Paul Perkins will lead the team in rushing yards vs. Cincinnati.
JOHN SCHMEELK: Fiction - This is the toughest one of the week, with the biggest question being which one of the two running backs is going to get most of the carries. Perkins came on strong last week, but except for a 14-yard run, he didn't do much better than Jennings, who is also more accomplished as a pass protector. I do not believe the team is ready to simply hand the job over to Perkins quite yet, so I'll still go with Jennings. The Bengals rush defense has not been great this year, however, so if Perkins can get a couple of explosive runs early, he might keep Jennings on the bench. The Giants will ride the hot hand.
LANCE MEDOW: Fact - Last week against the Eagles, Paul Perkins and Rashad Jennings each received 11 carries with Perkins tallying 32 yards compared to 26 for Jennings. Keep in mind, Bobby Rainey didn't have a carry because of a lingering calf injury but he'll likely be back in the mix Monday night, although I could see him doing more damage as a receiver and leading all backs in receiving yards. As far as rushing yards go, I think Perkins will edge out Jennings. Since leading the team in rushing yards in Week 1 with 75, Jennings has only topped the list twice (vs Ravens in Week 6, vs Rams in Week 7) and those totals were 15 and 25, respectively.
4. The deepest position in the Giants Ring of Honor is defensive end.
JOHN SCHMEELK: Fiction - I'm going for the "Full Fiction" this week. This is a close one between defensive end and linebacker, but I'm going to have to go with the latter. The Giants run out a few Hall of Famers at linebacker in their Ring of Honor with Harry Carson, Sam Huff and Lawrence Taylor. Backing those three up are Carl Banks, Brad Van Pelt and Jessie Armstead. Defensive end is similarly stacked with Hall of Famers Michael Strahan and Andy Robustelli.
Backing those two up are Osi Umenyiora, Justin Tuck and George Martin. Having the greatest defensive player in history of the game in LT tilts things towards the linebacker position, as does the fact there are three Hall of Famers at the position. Both are great, but the linebackers are the best and the deepest.
LANCE MEDOW: Fiction - Justin Tuck will be the fifth defensive end inducted into the Giants Ring of Honor, joining Andy Robustelli, George Martin, Michael Strahan and Osi Umenyiora. That's some decorated group. The only other position that rivals defensive end is linebacker (Sam Huff, Harry Carson, Lawrence Taylor, Jessie Armstead, Brad Van Pelt and Carl Banks).
You can essentially flip a coin between both of these positions. The defensive ends have a pair of Hall of Famers (Robustelli, Strahan), while the linebackers boast three (Huff, Carson, Taylor). I'll give linebacker the edge because of volume, substance and the presence of Lawrence Taylor. The linebackers account for six championships (five Super Bowls) and 35 Pro Bowl honors. In comparison, the defensive ends have 18 Pro Bowl honors and eight titles (six Super Bowls).
Keep an eye on these five players as the Giants face the Bengals on Monday