Ranking Giants' Toughest Remaining Games on Schedule to Make Playoffs

Kristopher Knox@@kris_knoxFeatured ColumnistNovember 18, 2020

Ranking Giants' Toughest Remaining Games on Schedule to Make Playoffs

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    Bill Kostroun/Associated Press

    New York Giants head coach Joe Judge picked up his third win of the season on Sunday. While a 3-7 record is nothing to brag about, it leaves the Giants just a half-game behind the 3-5-1 Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC West.

    Just don't tell Judge that.

    "I'll tell everyone right now, it's irrelevant,” Judge told reporters. "The only thing that matters is we keep improving as a team and go 1-0 every week."

    The reality, though, is that the records are relevant. The Giants are playing hard for Judge, and if they can manage to go 1-0 each week more often than not down the stretch, they can win the division. New York currently holds the best divisional record at 3-2.

    Yes, the Giants will have to make up ground on the Eagles, and they'll likely have to finish with at least six or seven wins to claim the division. If New York can win four of its final six, however, it could be hosting a playoff game in January.

    Here, we'll look at the three toughest opponents remaining on the Giants' schedule.

The Schedule

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    Adam Hunger/Associated Press

    Week 11: Bye

    Week 12: at Cincinnati Bengals

    Week 13: at Seattle Seahawks

    Week 14: Arizona Cardinals

    Week 15: Cleveland Browns

    Week 16: at Baltimore Ravens

    Week 17: Dallas Cowboys

3. Vs. Arizona Cardinals

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    Ross D. Franklin/Associated Press

    Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray might be the hardest player to defend in the league right now. He's dangerous as both a passer and a runner, and the Cardinals are dangerous because of him. When Murray is on, Arizona is capable of beating anyone in the league.

    However, the 6-3 Cardinals come in at No. 3 on our list because they're also capable of losing to just about anyone when Murray isn't taking over. They've lost games to the Miami Dolphins, Detroit Lions and Carolina Panthers this season.

    It's not outlandish to think that Arizona might stumble against the Giants on the road.

    Of course, containing Murray will still be a massive challenge, and this makes Arizona a more daunting opponent than the Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns or Dallas Cowboys.

2. At Seattle Seahawks

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    Ashley Landis/Associated Press

    A few weeks ago, this would have seemed like the toughest game remaining on New York's slate. However, the Seattle Seahawks have lost two of their last three, they possess the league's worst pass defense and they suddenly have a turnover problem.

    Seattle has given up the ball 10 times in their three losses.

    Still, this is going to be a hard one to win. The Seahawks have Russell Wilson, DK Metcalf and the league's top scoring offense. They can make life miserable for the Giants and their 23rd-ranked pass defense.

    Additionally, this one will be played on the road, meaning the Giants will have to deal with a cross-country trip, though not the full brunt of the 12th man.

    This one could become a shootout, the sort of game the 6-3 Seahawks are more accustomed to winning than the Giants.

1. At Baltimore Ravens

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    Charles Krupa/Associated Press

    Like the Seahawks, the Baltimore Ravens have started to show warts in recent weeks. However, their biggest issue has been an inability to slow the run. The Giants will have trouble exploiting that flaw with Saquon Barkley on injured reserve.

    Perhaps a bigger issue will be a ferocious pass rush and the league's first-ranked scoring defense. Giants quarterback Daniel Jones has already been sacked 31 times this season, and New York has not been a particularly prolific scoring team—it has topped 30 points only once.

    The Giants will also have to contend with Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson. While he hasn't been as unstoppable as he was during his MVP campaign of 2019, Jackson is still very much capable of giving a defense fits.

    Like the Seattle game, this one will be on the road—though a relatively short trip to Maryland isn't as daunting. The biggest challenge here will be matching points with a squad that ranks 12th in scoring them and first in not allowing them.

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