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Redskins-Giants: Prediction

Sep 3, 2008, 9:00 PM EST

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Predicting NFL games is folly. It’s even worse when it comes to the first game of the season when one of the teams has a new coach with a new offensive scheme and the other has variables such as a possible Super Bowl hangover and the loss of two of its best players.

But picking games is one of the obligations of being a blogger. So here goes with an analysis that is short on specifics and long on gut feeling:

As I said earlier, this is a winnable game for the Redskins. The Giants are not an elite team, but a very good team that got hot at the right time.

But, still, the Giants are very good. They did not come out of absolutely nowhere to win the Super Bowl. They have won 29 games the past three seasons and made the playoffs in each of those years. While they don’t have any players who are among the truly elite at their positions, they have a lot of very good players.

The New York offensive line is emblematic of the team. They don’t have any household names lining up there but there are no weak links, either.

With the loss of Strahan and Umenyiora, the Giants’ defensive line is in the same boat, although Justin Tuck could be a star.

I see the respective Giants lines controlling their Washington counterparts. And, thank you Captain Obvious, that should allow the home team to control the game.

The Skins’ puncher’s chance comes from the fact that nobody knows what the Jim Zorn offense really looks like and what tweaks Greg Blache will make to the defense. The element of surprise could work to their advantage. A few big plays and a few takeaways would give the Redskins a shot (thanks again, Captain).

Right now, the Giants are the better team. The Redskins could be good. They want to be very good. They aren’t there yet. Throw in the fact that the game is in Giants stadium and you come up with:

Giants 24, Redskins 17

  1. Anonymous - Sep 4, 2008 at 12:00 AM

    Rich, I agree with your analysis. I too believe this will be a close game and I also think it is more likely the Giants will have the upper hand at home.

    As much as we like to believe that Skins are hiding some facet of their offense and defense to unveil in the regular season — I think this is just hopefulness on the part of fans. I saw too many missed tackles and blocks in preseason. That kind of play isn’t about hidden schemes. It is about basics of the game. The Skins must absolutely control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball better than they did in games 4 and 5 of the pre-season.

    Thank goodness the pre-season is over. Everything counts now. We can stop speculating about why the Skins may or may not be any good. They will play for real and we will now be able to observe the true nature of the team. Let’s hope the Giants game is an experience they can build upon as they find their legs and learn to play under the new coaches and schemes. Let us also hope that blocking and tackling are back in vogue again as they were in the first 3 pre-season affairs.

  2. Anonymous - Sep 4, 2008 at 9:50 PM

    Either way win or lose the skins will play a good game. THey are my team and i will stick right there with them. THe loss of Taylor was hard on the boys. I believe that they will do better then last year…they gave everyone a suprise last year even the cowboys which are good but you know i am a skin fan so it is natural to hate them! Good luck skins and rock on!

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