Giants vs. Washington Odds & Picks: Bet Sunday’s Moneyline Underdog
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images. Pictured: Daniel Jones vs. Washington during Week 6.
Giants vs. Washington Odds
The Giants travel to the nation’s capital for an NFC East matchup with the Football Team. Big Blue was able to take the first installment of this season series, 20-19, covering as the 2-point home favorite in a game that stayed under the low total of 43.5.
That win was the Giants’ lone victory of 2020, and the team is hoping to get win No. 2 come Sunday after some tough losses of late. Meanwhile, Washington is hoping for a bit of a boost in play after a bye last week.
New York Giants
The Giants enter this one on short rest after a 28-26 loss to the Buccaneers on Monday Night Football.
While 1-6, the Giants have performed admirably. If you take out a blowout loss to San Francisco — their only loss by more than 10 points — they have lost six games by an average of 4.6 points. They’ve hung in with opponents due to a strong defense, but have also struggled to close out games due to their below-average offense.
On defense, the Giants have been fine at limiting opposing offenses on a per-play basis, allowing 5.4 yards per play but hunker down in the red zone: They’re seventh in opponents’ red-zone touchdown percentage. By keeping opponents out of the end zone, it gives the poor offense some slack throughout the game.
The Giants have one of the sharper run defenses in the league and rank ninth in defensive rush success rate, per SharpFootballStats.
The unit’s ability to stop the run has put opponents behind the sticks and stymied drives.
Keep an eye on Giants No. 1 cornerback James Bradberry in this one — he didn’t shadow Washington’s top wideout Terry McLaurin in the teams’ first matchup, and the Ohio State product had seven catches on 12 targets for 74 yards. Bradberry has been a stud in his first season in New York and I expect him to show up in this matchup.
Meanwhile, Daniel Jones’ two interceptions crushed New York’s shot at an upset Monday night against Tampa Bay, and the offensive line continues to struggle for the entirety of games and Jones is constantly feeling quick pressure.
What Jones may need to simply trust more is his speed. We all saw the memes about the turf monster gobbling up Jones on what would have been an 88-yard touchdown run, but what gets lost is that Jones is athletic for his size and is able to scoot out of the pocket. Washington is in the top 10 in pressure rate, according to Pro Football Reference, so Jones is going to need to escape the pocket.
Washington Football Team
While the Giants have been able to punch above their weight class and have lost tight games, the Football Team has been quite different. After a Week 1 win over Philadelphia and a thumping of a listless Dallas team before the bye, Washington has lost each game against non-Giant opponents by double digits.
Kyle Allen is not going to be the driving force behind this Washington offense, it’s going to be on rookie running back Antonio Gibson to create some offense out of the backfield against a stringent Giants rush defense. If Washington can establish the run with Gibson and J.D. McKissic, that can open up avenues for Allen to throw. He does not have a big arm, averaging fewer than seven yards per pass attempts for his career, but quick passes can help string together a drive for a Football Team that’s struggled to score, averaging 19 points per game.
A lead will help this defense, which has been a revelation in Ron Rivera’s first season as head coach, but has been playing from behind most of the year. The Football Team has been trailing at halftime of each game this season, aside from the Dallas win two weeks ago.
For a great defense, one of the few struggles Washington has had has been its inability to force turnovers. Only 5.5% of drives end in a turnover for this defensive unit, towards the bottom of the league. The team forced one turnover in the first matchup and could be in line for some against the turnover-happy Jones.
Not much has changed from when these teams just met in New Jersey and the Giants were able to eke out a close win. It was their only win of 2020 and I am sure they are looking forward to facing this Washington team that is less impressive than the G-Men despite the record difference.
There are different ways to play the Giants as I make this game close to a pick’em anyway — I teased the visiting team with the Titans to get the Giants at +8.5. (You can read my preview on the Titans game here.)
However, playing the Giants on the moneyline is a fine move considering they have more weapons and are going to get up for this game off a sour loss last week in which they arguably outplayed the Bucs,
I don’t see a reason for Washington to be laying points to any team in the league outside of the Jets, and the Giants are in a strong spot to notch another win over their division rival, even if I’m playing it safe.
PICKS: Giants ML +125; teased up to +8.5