Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NFC East [Print without images]

Wednesday, April 15, 2009
My Predictions: Giants will win 12 games

By Dan Graziano
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

In what is being referred to as one of most popular (only) NFL schedule mini-series on the Internet, it's time to close out with a look at the mighty New York Giants. I've already given away the win total. Now it's time to see how it happened:

Sept. 13 Washington -- Poor Redskins. This is becoming an annual trip to the Meadowlands. If it happens again in 2010, we'll really know something's up. Eli Manning hooks up with Braylon Edwards for two touchdowns. Edwards only drops four passes. The Giants' new-look defensive line gives the Redskins fits. It's not a blowout, but it's a win. Giants are 1-0.

Sept 20 at Dallas -- This is what I like to call a Spectacle game. The entire NFL world will stop to see Jerry Jones' new stadium. Cowboys ride a wave of emotion to the victory and the Giants fall to 1-1.

Sept. 27 at Tampa Bay -- Give me the Jints in bounce-back game. Tampa Bay doesn't have a quarterback, the Giants do. The record's 2-1 and the march to the Super Bowl is on.

Oct. 4 at Kansas City -- Any three-game road trip is rough, but the Giants will use this trip for bonding purposes. Tom Coughlin passes out "Road Warriors" T-shirts on the team plane and the Giants have positive memories of that '07 run to Glendale. 3-1

Oct. 11 Oakland -- Why do all these AFC West matchups sound so weird to me? The Giants had a big letdown game against the Bengals at this point last season, so WATCH OUT here. But I can't pick the Raiders. Giants win narrowly and improve to 4-1.

Oct. 18 at New Orleans -- The Saints are still rolling at this point -- and the Superdome will be rocking. But the Saints' defense can't slow down the Giants' running game. Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw combine for 200 yards rushing -- and then share a plate of beignets at Cafe du Monde. 5-1

Oct. 25 Arizona -- The Giants made the cross-country trip last season and took care of business. They wanted a shot at the Cardinals in last year's NFC title game. This isn't quite as good -- but it will do for now. Giants roll! 6-1

Nov. 1 at Philadelphia -- I talked to Justin Tuck recently and he was still upset about the playoff game. I can't remember exactly why I picked the Giants to win this game, but I'm sticking to my guns. Oh yeah, I remember now. It was the Braylon Edwards factor. Asante Samuel won't be able to defend him -- and the Giants will win a thriller. 7-1

Nov. 8 San Diego -- I would like Norv Turner's chances on a neutral field, but the cross-country trip scares me. The Giants take care of business and roll into the bye week 8-1.

Nov. 15 Bye -- Tom Coughlin loves the timing of this bye.

Nov. 22 Atlanta -- Danger! Danger! For some reason, I like Matt Ryan's chances in the swirling Meadowlands winds. This team is due for a letdown. And it happens right here. 8-2

Nov. 26 at Denver -- I know some of you are worried about the short week, but Coughlin will be ready for this one before the season begins. Kyle "The Neckbeard" Orton will struggle mightily against the Giants' potent pass rush. Coughlin will make a special T-shirt just for this game. Giants improve to 9-2.

Dec. 6 Dallas -- Coughlin takes full advantage of what amounts to another bye week. Two years ago, Tony Romo rolled into Giants Stadium during the regular-season and embarrassed the Giants' defense. It won't happen this time. Giants are 10-2.

Dec. 13 Philadelphia -- The Giants haven't forgotten what happened in the Meadowlands last season -- twice. If you had to circle a game on this schedule in which the Giants were most excited about, here it is. 11-2

Dec. 21 at Washington -- Not totally sure what frame of mind the Redskins will be in at this point in the season. Something tells me that Haynesworth misses this game, and that's a really bad sign for the Redskins. Giants find a way and this three-game stretch of wins over the Beast teams will help propel them to a Super Bowl appearance. 12-2

Dec. 27 Carolina -- So the Redskins and Panthers meet again -- and at this point in the season. I think the Panthers will have more to play for at this point. Giants fall to 12-3.

Jan. 3 at Minnesota -- Vikings struggling to make the playoffs. Giants are already in. They play their reserves and finish 12-4. I know my prediction from Tuesday was 11-5, but I've had several hours to second-guess myself.

Here's the scorecard: Giants (12-4), Cowboys (10-6), Eagles (10-6), Redskins (9-7)
If anyone finds any discrepancies in my predictions, please leave a note in the "comments" section.