As important as Manning's performance is Sunday, the front five's job is even more determining.
Against the Packers, the offensive line did a great job of protecting Manning—giving him a lot of time to read the field and come up with big plays, especially on third down. The line only gave up one sack for five yards the entire game.
Where the line struggled was in the running game. The Giants struggled to get anything going on the ground, hindering them all season long—a foreign problem to the Giants of recent years.
The only notable run caused by the blocking up front this past Sunday was Ahmad Bradshaw's 23-yard dash to set up the last-second touchdown at the end of the first half.
On both Bradshaw's and Jacobs' later long runs, both backs had to cut back across the entire field in order to gain any significant yardage—a touchdown in Jacobs' case.
You could chalk it up to an over-pursuing Green Bay defense, but the Giants' committee of backs struggled to get any significant yardage on running plays in all four quarters, gaining only three first downs on the ground as opposed to 15 first downs through the air.
I believe the biggest difference between the line's struggles this season compared to the last few seasons is the absence of Shaun O'Hara and Rich Seubert. I understand both of them were battling injuries, but their absence has had a huge affect on the team.
The team believed Will Beatty would be able to step up, which hasn't worked out. Letting those two linemen go in the offseason has greatly affected their ability.
And David Diehl is possibly the worst starting offensive lineman in the entire league. He is constantly failing to get any push in the running game, and struggles with blocking one-on-one on almost every passing play.
The Giants will have their hands full this week against a front seven that boasts the likes of Justin and Aldon Smith, Ahmad Brooks, Navarro Bowman and Patrick Willis to name a few.