Seahawks will try to stay perfect at MetLife when they face Giants
Sep 29, 2023, 11:14 AM
(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — The New York Giants are searching for answers and they face the task of playing on a day of the week the Seattle Seahawks own and in a stadium where they have never lost.
The puzzling Giants (1-2), who were overmatched by both Dallas and San Francisco, will host the Seahawks (2-1) on Monday night. The Seahawks won 27-13 last year when the teams played at Seattle.
Having the game at the Meadowlands is not going to make things any easier for the Giants.
The Seahawks are 5-0 at MetLife Stadium, including the only Super Bowl title in franchise history. Three of the five wins have come against the Giants. And they are 28-12 all-time on Monday night, a .700 win percentage that is the best of any team.
This also can be viewed as a must-win for New York, with games at Miami and Buffalo to follow.
“I mean it’s definitely still early, this is not a must game I would say,” Giants defensive lineman Leonard Williams said. “It’s not something that’s going to keep us out or keep us in the playoffs at the end of the year, but at the same time we try to look at the season like quarterly.”
Being 1-3 would not be ideal.
The Seahawks have won two in a row, and Seattle coach Pete Carroll said his team is getting healthier.
“This is a classic opportunity for us to go against a team that’s got to have a win. We’ve got to have one too,” he said.
BARKLEY OR NOT
Giants star running back Saquon Barkley sprained his right ankle in a win at Arizona on Sept. 17 and had to sit out the following Thursday night at San Francisco.
Barkley will have had 11 days since suffering the high ankle sprain, and it’s uncertain whether he will play. He practiced Thursday on a limited basis. The last time he had a high ankle sprain was in 2019 and he missed three games.
Matt Breida replaced Barkley against the 49ers, who limited the Giants to 29 yards rushing. Breida led the team with four carries for 17 yards and a touchdown. The Seahawks have the league’s second-worst pass defense, so New York may just throw more.
After missing more than a year, Jamal Adams is expected to make his 2023 debut for Seattle. Appropriately enough, it’s coming at MetLife, where he played three seasons for the Jets before being traded to Seattle.
Adams suffered a torn quadriceps tendon in the 2022 season opener and his recovery has taken longer than expected.
It’s uncertain how Adams will be used. He might play a traditional safety spot or Seattle could use him as a hybrid linebacker who plays in the box at times.
STOP THE RUN
The Giants had one of the worst defenses in the league against the run last season, and nothing seemingly has improved despite signing inside linebacker Bobby Okereke and defensive linemen A’Shawn Robinson and Rakeem Nunez-Roches.
New York is ranked 29th against the rush, giving up an average of 138 yards. San Francisco gained 141 its 30-12 victory, which featured bad tackling by Wink Martindale’s unit.
“We put an emphasis on it today at practice,” Okereke said Thursday. “I had a coach always tell me that tackling is all about technique and desire. We all have a great desire to tackle, now it’s just cleaning up the technique and we’ll get it right.”
Kenneth Walker III and Zach Charbonnet combined for 143 rushing yards for Seattle last week.
Seattle has had a unique scouting opportunity for each of its past three opponents. All three played a prime-time game on either Thursday or Monday the week prior to playing the Seahawks, allowing Seattle’s coaches and players a little additional look at their next opponent.
Detroit played the first game of the season at Kansas City before playing Seattle in Week 2. Carolina had a Monday night game six days before playing at Seattle in Week 3. And last Thursday night, the Giants played at San Francisco.
“I like it, it’s a good opportunity, you just get the feel of the teams, they’re talking about the players and styles and the background, and the camps,” Carroll said. “You just get a lot of the additional information.”
The Giants have used three different offensive line combinations. If everyone is healthy, they will use a fourth this week. Andrew Thomas (hamstring) would be the left tackle with Ben Bredeson (concussion) at left guard, rookie John Michael Schmitz at center, Marcus McKethan at right guard and Evan Neal at right tackle. Schmitz and Neal are the only two to start all three games.
If not, expect Josh Ezeudu somewhere, except center.
More on the Seattle Seahawks
• Bump: Seahawks should take page from Dolphins to get JSN going
• Huard: How Seahawks CB Devon Witherspoon has already stood out
• An easy tweak to Seahawks’ offense that Bumpus wants to see
• Lefko: The unexpected boost to Seahawks’ path to NFC contender
• Seattle Seahawks Win: Carroll on what’s good, what still needs work