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Fact or Fiction: Does Wayne Gallman keep his TD streak alive?


Wayne Gallman will score a touchdown for the fourth consecutive week.

John Schmeelk: Fact - In the past, the Eagles' defense was very susceptible to big plays but they have become far more disciplined on the back-end of their defense. They are still playing "Cover 1" (man-to-man with one deep safety) 39% of the time but their cornerbacks are far more disciplined about letting receivers beat them over the top. They have allowed only 18 completions of 20+ yards, which is the second-fewest in the NFL.

What does this have to do with the question? Well, it means the Giants are going to have to sustain long drives down the field and rely on succeeding in the red zone to put touchdowns on the board. They will try to run the ball in if they get in goal-to-go situations. It's possible Alfred Morris gets the opportunities, but I'll bet on Gallman.

Dan Salomone: Fact - The Giants have found success with a committee approach and Gallman has been the lead guy back there. You have seen the identity of the Giants' defense come through, and now the offense is starting to poke its head out - that starts up front and on the ground.

Lance Medow: Fiction - The Eagles have allowed at least one rushing touchdown in six of their eight games this season, including one to Gallman in Week 7. Based on that trend, he has a favorable chance to get back in the end zone. Keep in mind, Gallman ran in for a score against the Eagles after Devonta Freeman left the game and no longer served as a threat to Gallman's carries when the team was in scoring position.

The Giants will force at least two turnovers vs. Philadelphia.

Schmeelk: Fiction - Only the Cowboys have more than the Eagles' 17 giveaways this season. Carson Wentz has been the root of a lot of those turnovers, accounting for a league-leading 12 interceptions and seven fumbles. So why won't the Giants force two turnovers? The Eagles' offensive line is getting healthy. It looks like the Eagles will have both their starting offensive tackles, Jason Peters and Lane Johnson, ready to play on Sunday. They may also get Isaac Seumalo back, which would make them as healthy as they have been since Week 2. Miles Sanders, Alshon Jeffery and Dallas Goedert are also healthy. There should be less pressure on Wentz to make plays, so my wild guess is that he will protect the ball a bit better.

Salomone: Fact - The NFC East is what it is this year largely because of turnovers. Dallas leads the NFL in giveaways (20), Philadelphia is second (17), and the Giants and Washington are tied for fourth (15). So, it's safe to say Sunday's outcome will largely be decided on this front. The Giants climbed out of the hole last week with five takeaways (and no giveaways) to get to even in differential for the season.

Medow: Fiction - Takeaways are very fluky in the NFL. They can come in bunches and then quickly disappear, so you can never go into a game banking on them. The Eagles have the second-most turnovers in the league this season at more than two per game, but they only had one vs. the Giants in Week 7. Although Philly has had at least two turnovers in five of their eight games, the team is getting healthier on the offensive line and at the skill positions, meaning Carson Wentz is going to be surrounded with more familiar players this weekend. I think that will help in the ball security department. On top of that, the Giants have had just one takeaway or less in five of their nine contests.

View rare photos of the historic rivalry between the New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles.

Austin Mack will lead the team in receiving yards again.

Schmeelk: Fiction - Mack's deep catch against Washington was the product as a well-designed play to attack a zone defense. Washington's defensive back was put in a situation where they had to choose whether to cover Evan Engram running down the seam or Mack outside. They chose Engram and Mack was wide open. I was more impressed by Mack's contested catch on a third-down slant. He will catch a couple of short or intermediate passes but I don't see a big game coming from him. This could be a big game for Sterling Shepard, since Darius Slayton will once again draw the Eagles top cornerback, Darius Slay, on most plays.

Salomone: Fact - Why not? His breakout game last week was only the tip of the iceberg of what has been a large body of practice work for the undrafted rookie from Ohio State.

"For a young player, this guy is a smart player, he's an instinctive player," coach Joe Judge said. "He's a guy that [wide receivers coach] Tyke [Tolbert] can take at any point in practice and if someone needs to come out for a rep, he just throws him in that position. It doesn't matter what it is. He knows everything on the field. He's very aware of what's going on around him. He understands what his strengths are, he understands what he needs to improve on as a rookie. I think [offensive coordinator] Jason [Garrett] has done a really good job incorporating him into the game plan. This guy has earned everything he's gotten so far. He keeps coming to work every day and giving us reasons to put him on the field."

In other words, regardless of who else is active on Sunday, Mack's looks aren't going away.

Medow: Fiction - In the first matchup against the Eagles, Sterling Shepard was the Giants' leading receiver with 59 yards and Evan Engram finished second at 46. Philly is fourth in the NFL against the pass and is surrendering just 209 yards per game. The Giants will likely have to methodically move down the field as opposed to relying on big plays - and that's where Shepard and Engram come into play. Keep in mind, Mack led the team in receiving yards against Washington, thanks to a 50-yard catch. His other three catches were for a total of just 22 yards.

The Giants will sack Carson Wentz at least three times.

Schmeelk: Fact - This might be a surprise since the Eagles' offensive line is getting healthy. But Carson Wentz is someone who likes to hold the ball a very long time to try to make plays down the field. He will often create sack opportunities due to his style of play and that is likely to happen at least three times in the game.

Salomone: Fact - Since he was drafted in 2016, Carson Wentz has been sacked 161 times - the fourth-most in the league. It isn't necessarily a knock on him – Russell Wilson has been sacked a league-high 207 times in that stretch – but it is a symptom of his style of play. The Giants just need to take care of the other side of the double-edged sword and not let him turn broken plays into big ones.

Medow: Fiction - If there's one area the Giants have been consistent, it's the pass rushing department. They have at least two sacks in every game this season but at least three just three times (including three on Wentz). The Eagles' offensive line is healthier compared to where it was three weeks ago. Their left tackle Jason Peters has returned, right tackle Lane Johnson, who played against the Giants, had the bye week to recover from an ankle injury and there's a chance their starting left guard Isaac Seumalo, who has been sidelined since Week 3, could return from injured reserve. Wentz has been sacked (32) more than any other quarterback this season, but the entire left side of the line will be different this weekend.


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