It’s time for 5 Questions and this time it’s for a real game. How sweet is that? I sent over five questions to ETVal who runs the Giants’ blog Big Blue View. I answered five questions from his so go over to his site and check it out.
Blogging The Boys: Give us your gut feel, will Michael Strahan and Sam Madison play significant minutes in the game? How much do the Giants need them to play and who are the backups?
Big Blue View: Strahan will likely play a very limited number of snaps. Even the Giants aren't sure what condition he is in at this point. Plus, they aren't sure how much of the new defensive scheme he actually knows. As for Madison, the latest reports indicate he is practicing. If he can't go, Corey Webster starts in his place. To be honest, I'm not sure it matters much I don't trust either one.
BTB: Brandon Jacobs in place of Tiki Barber brings a new running style for the Giants. How has Jacobs looked as the main-guy and how are they using him in the offense?
BBV: Jacobs has looked fine. He didn't break any real long runs in pre-season, and I don't expect him to be the big-play guy Tiki was. I do think he will be effective, though. What will be interesting to see is how defenses hold up late in games after tackling this 265-pound bull 20-25 times. Watch for how the Giants use rookie Ahmad Bradshaw. He will return kickoffs and probably be the third-down 'screen and draw' guy. The Giants are excited by his big-play potential.
BTB: No Giants discussion is complete without the inevitable Eli Manning discussion. So give it to us: how has he looked and what are you expecting out of him this year?
BBV: Eli had a terrific preseason. He threw the ball well and made good decisions on the field. Off the field, of course, he dealt with the Tiki Barber nonsense. Word is that pretty much everyone involved with the Giants was happy to see Eli stand up and slap Tiki down. On my site I have predicted that Eli will have a better season than your guy, Tony Romo. We'll see if I'm right.
BTB: How will the Giants attack the Cowboys on Sunday? Any hints from the team or from your own evaluations as to their strategy? What are the strengths of the Giants?
BBV: Offensively, the strength of this team is its receivers. They go five deep at wide receiver, including an exciting rookie in Steve Smith from USC. Then, of course, there is Jeremy Shockey. I think this will be a team that will rely on the pass when it needs a play to be made.
BTB: Talk about your new defensive coordinator. We hear he came from the Eagles and brought their style of defense (read: blitz) over to New York. Any hints of that so far?
BBV: The scheme is much more aggressive with new defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo. As you say, he is a disciple of Philadelphia's Jimmy Johnson and it's obvious. You'll see a lot more blitzing and stunting than you have from the Giants recently, and you'll see a lot of 'press' coverage from the corners. Of course, the corners are the weak link in an otherwise good defense. So, if the Giants don't make Romo hurry he should find open guys.
There you go, I can’t wait for Sunday night.