It’s been another frustrating season for the Giants. But with winnable games on the horizon, we’re about to find out if a late push or a focus on the NFL Draft is more likely.
No one is going to mistake the 2021 New York Giants for playoff contenders, but when you consider how this season started, things could be much worse. In the overly optimistic view, New York has won two of its last three games headed into a bye week that could give their squad a chance to get healthier for the season’s stretch run.
Saquon Barkley hasn’t played since Week 5 but appears to be working his way back. Kenny Golladay missed three games but returned against the Raiders on Sunday, though he had just two catches.
All said, the Giants are now 3-6 with some winnable games ahead. They’ll get the defending champion Buccaneers next week, but after that, it’s division rival Philadelphia (also 3-6) and the 2-7 Dolphins.
The G-Men by the Numbers
Record: 3-6 (No. 3 in NFC East)
Rushing offense: 95.9 yards/game (No. 24 in NFL)
Passing offense: 238.9 yards/game (No. 15 in NFL)
Scoring offense: 19.9 points/game (No. 24 in NFL)
Rushing defense: 122.6 yards/game (No. 22 in NFL)
Passing defense: 249.9 yards/game (No. 19 in NFL)
Total defense: 372.4 yards/game (No. 22 in NFL)
Scoring defense: 24.0 points/game (No. 19 in NFL)
Giants’ 2021 Attendance Numbers
The Giants have played nine total games, with five at home and four on the road. Coming out of the bye, they play three out of their next four away from MetLife Stadium, with their only home game on Nov. 28 against the Eagles.
- The Giants are averaging 73,951 fans per game, which ranks fourth in the NFL. There’s room to improve, however, as that only accounts for 89.6% of MetLife Stadium’s capacity of 82,500.
- This is a modest drop from 2019, in which the Giants drew 74,664 fans per game. That is about a 1% decrease.
- Over five games, the Giants have welcomed 369,757 total fans to East Rutherford, which is the second-most in the NFL.
- The Giants have proven to be an attractive opponent as well. They average 71,415 fans per game on the road, which ranks fifth in the league.
Big Blue Contract ROI
The Giants’ four highest-paid players by total 2021 cash are:
DE Leonard Williams: $26,000,000
WR Kenny Golladay: $18,073,525
CB Adoreé Jackson: $15,176,470
CB James Bradberry: $14,250,000
Notably, three of the Giants’ four highest-paid guys this year are defensive players, led by pass-rusher Leonard Williams at $26 million, per Spotrac. He signed a three-year deal earlier this year, worth $63 million, including $45 million guaranteed. That’s resulted in 5.5 sacks so far, which ranks 19th in the league, with 4.5 of them coming since Oct. 10.
Kenny Golladay is also at the beginning of his deal with the Giants; the wide receiver inked a four-year contract in March that will pay him $72 million over four years. The ROI on Golladay’s deal, however, is very much up for discussion. He missed 17 games over the previous four seasons with the Lions and has sat out three this year with a hyperextended knee.
The team says it did its research on Golladay before bringing him on board, but it’s not a great look so far. His best performance this season came at New Orleans, where he tallied six catches for 116 total yards.
The cornerback duo of Jackson and Bradberry are the only other players on the roster that will earn eight figures in 2021. Jackson has stayed healthy despite missing 13 games last season with the Titans due to an injury. Bradberry has three interceptions, which is top-10 in the league and just one off of the pace for team-best.
Quarterback Daniel Jones has had a fair season statistically, but his fantasy impact won’t blow anyone away. He’s thrown for 2,069 yards this season, which puts him smack in the middle of the league’s starting quarterbacks and his eight passing touchdowns puts him at 23rd.
Rookie gadget man Kadarius Toney is the team’s top receiver, but is hovering right on the drop line in most standard fantasy leagues. This isn’t an offense that’s lighting the world on fire as it is, and there aren’t any other receivers on the roster that are attractive starts. As a former Pro Bowler, Golladay would figure to be a flex or low-end WR2 candidate if he was able to prove an ability to stay healthy, but that’s a guy who has had just six total targets since the first week of October.
On the ground, Devontae Booker has provided reliable-if-not-amazing value spelling the injured Saquon Barkley. He leads the team both in total yards (315) and yards per game (39.4). In better news, Barkley could return after the bye — the only problem is that if he does come back at that point, his return game would come against Tampa Bay, which has the best run defense in the NFL.