As the 2022 NFL season approaches, it’s time to do a look ahead at the New York Giants schedule. The Giants are a hard team to evaluate because they have so many moving pieces and storylines that could be distractions during the season. A potential fascinating train-wreck to watch unfold before the hostile New York media and fanbase.
A few writers here at Gridiron Heroics have already brought up questions and concerns the Giants fanbase should be thinking about. Jhon Guarin discusses some of the key Giants playing for a new contract going into the season. Kenneth White also proposes the idea of the Giants needing a new quarterback if Daniel Jones continues to show glaring flaws. 2018 second overall pick Saquon Barkleys days as a New York Giant could be coming to a close at seasons end, Jhon Guarin explains.
Add on a new head coach in Brian Daboll, and there’s a lot of different ways this Giants season can go.
Here’s my projection for all 17 games in the 2022 NFL season:
Over 7.5 wins (+140)
Under 7.5 wins (-165)
Week 1: @ Tennessee Titans
It’s never fun starting the season on the road, and certainly not fun opening against Derrick Henry. Ranking in the bottom ten in rushing yards allowed and yards per carry last season, this Giants defense will have their hands full with Henry. The Titans also have extra motivation going into the season after being called a fraudulent AFC one seed and then losing on a last second field-goal in the Division round to the Cincinnati Bengals. Henry proves too much and a Titans defense projected 11th by sportsnaut, stifles Daniel Jones and co.
Week 2: Carolina Panthers
Welcome Baker Mayfield or welcome back to MetLife Sam Darnold? Either way, I don’t see either of them being a real threat. This is one of those games that both teams fans circle as wins. Both teams are similar in terms of quarterbacks trying to find their games, and explosive running backs in Christian McCaffrey and Saquon Barkley (when healthy, of course). Pro Football Network has the two teams ranked 22nd and 23rd in their fantasy football defense rankings for the 2022 NFL season. A toss up game, I like the Giants to get their first win of the season here.
Week 3: Dallas Cowboys (Monday Night Football)
Under the bright lights in the meadowlands, this will coach Brian Dabolls first real test of the season. That’s not to take anything away from the Titans or Panthers, but the Cowboys are the Cowboys. Winning division games will win you trust in the fanbase, especially against the Cowboys. A Dallas team last season that statmuse points out ranked first in total offense, touchdowns, points, and points per game, will not be a fun matchup for the Giants. Returning mainstays Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliot, CeeDee Lamb, Michael Gallup, Tony Pollard, and Dalton Schultz will only ensure the offense to remain lethal from every angle. Dallas scores too many points and leaves their business trip to New York out on top.
Week 4: Chicago Bears
Another one of those circle games for both fanbases. After the Monday night loss to the Cowboys, vibes may be low, but that can change with a good showing against the Bears to get back to .500. Rookie Kayvon Thibodeaux has the best game of his early career against an offensive line PFF projects to be awful. The Giants blitz the pocket, forcing Justin Fields to make quick decisions all game that lead to turnovers. A much needed win with a trip looming in week five.
Week 5: Green Bay Packers (Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London)
While coffee is brewing on the East and West Coast, the Packers will be scoring overseas. Aaron Rodgers and his bizarre tattoo cruise past the Giants who still looked jet-lagged.
Week 6: Baltimore Ravens
A Ravens secondary that Ryan Duclos writes could be the best in the entire AFC, against an offense that has struggled for years, doesn’t feel too promising. Daniel Jones will struggle throwing into the zipper tight space the Ravens allow, and things could get ugly. Lamar Jackson in a potential contract year having to once again prove himself, pencil in 100+ rushing yards against this Giants defense.
Week 7: @ Jacksonville Jaguars
Here we go again with both sides circling a win (a theme that will come up a few more times throughout this season). The Jacksonville Jaguars can only go up from the dumpster fire of a season they had last year. Both teams added exciting young defensive talent with the Jaguars taking Georgias Travon Walker first overall, and the Giants taking Oregons Kayvon Thibodeaux fifth overall. The Jaguars come out with a sense in urgency in this one, as Trevor Lawrence continues to mission to show doubters he can play at the NFL level. This game will probably not be the prettiest display of football you see all season.
Week 8: @ Seattle Seahawks
No Russell Wilson, no great defense, no real direction. Giants offense wakes up on the other side of the country, and handles what many believe could be the worst team in the NFL this season. The 12th man may be in danger of being traded for draft compensation, as Seattles tries to figure out its future.
Week 9: Bye
Week 10: Houston Texans
Giants positive momentum heading into the bye week carries over, and they crush a struggling Texans team. 2022 third overall pick cornerback Derek Stingley will be a fun matchup against the Giants Kadarius Toney.
Week 11: Detroit Lions
The Lions should be improved in 2022 (even if the record doesn’t show it), but if Jared Goff is the quarterback, it’s hard to pick that team to win many games. TJ Hockenson could present problems for the Giants defense, if his quarterback can get him the ball. Daniel Jones has a clean efficient game, and the Giants find themselves back at .500 ten games into the season.
Week 12: @ Dallas Cowboys
Despite the 5-5 record, this game should be pretty similar to week three. Prescott should be able to find his receivers and the Cowboys will do what they do best, put up a lot of points. Giants are forced to play catch-up and simply can’t catch-up. Trevor Diggs snags a couple interceptions, and the Giants start to think about another NFC East rival on the schedule in week 13.
Week 13: Washington Commanders
A Washington team on a similar trajectory as the Giants should make for a fun game. Division games are always intense and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Commanders entered this game with the same 5-6 record as the Giants. The Giants cornerbacks will face arguably their toughest assignment of the season to this point, getting matched up with Terry McLaurin. Daniel Jones and Carson Wentz both find the end-zones, Giants win an exciting one with a late field goal.
Week 14: Philadelphia Eagles
The Eagles will be good, really good. Jalen Hurts returns and should be improved in the passing game, even if he’s not, he still has his legs. AJ Brown and DeVonta Smith could challenge as the best one-two wide receiving punch in the NFL, followed by running back Miles Sanders, and the always steady Dallas Goedert. An improved defense as well, Hunter Walsh of Gridiron Heroics, discusses why the Eagles are not just the team to watch in the NFC East, but the entire NFC. My lengthy praise of the weapons Philadelphia possesses can probably tell you where I’m leaning in this one. Giants get to say hi to old friend James Bradberry.
Week 15: @ Washington Commanders
Similar to week 13, but I think the Commanders take this back in Washington. Teams are pretty equal, home and home split makes sense.
Week 16: @ Minnesota Vikings
A nice road victory. Minnesota is also in the first year of new head coach Kevin O’Connell, and there will be a transition period from the Mike Zimmer era. The Vikings always seem to be solid and have an excellent receiving core with Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen, but I think New Yorks defense plays with a surprising edge in this one. Daniel Jones continues his solid season, and the Giants inch closer back to that coveted .500 mark.
Week 17: Indianapolis Colts
Jonathan Taylor. Much like Derrick Henry all the way back in week one, Taylor should be able to put his versatile skillset on display against the Giants. Add in the steady Matt Ryan at quarterback for the Colts this season, and Indianapolis could step foot in MetLife having already clinched a playoff spot. In that case, this game could look different if players rest, but we’ll fall under the assumption everyone is playing. All-pros Darius Leonard and DeForest Buckner once again lead a Colts defense that has Lombardi on their mind in February.
Week 18: @Philadephila Eagles
Fletcher Cox, Derek Barnett, Hasson Reddick, Darius Slay, James Bradberry, all lead the rejuvenated Eagles defense to a season finale win over the Giants. Eagles go to the playoffs, Giants go to the offseason.
*The Giants fall a game short of hitting over 7.5 wins.
7-10 is not that bad for a team that won four games last season. Would I love this team to flip the record and make the playoffs with ten wins? of course, but you have to stay realistic. The Eagles and Cowboys are better positioned for good or great seasons, while the Giants and Commanders will be looking up at them in the NFC East. Daniel Jones has to have a respectable, durable season or it’s going to be time to move on. The Bears did it with Mitch Trubisky, Browns with Baker, and Jets with Sam Darnold. Just because you’re a high draft pick, doesn’t mean you’re not replaceable, it’s sports, there’s always someone new waiting for an opportunity. Coach Brian Daboll guides his team to a respectable seven wins, and the Giants should have some clarity on big questions they had going into the 2022 season.
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