Skip to content

Enemy Intel: Around the NFL, Week 5—Teams won’t stop baiting Beckham

Oct 8, 2016, 10:34 AM EDT


Here’s my weekly Redskins-centric look around the NFL as the teams of the NFC East all play outside of the division for the first time this year.

—Are the Eagles walking into a trap in Detroit? That’s probably wishful thinking by Redskins fans. But if the Eagles let them hang around that indoor stadium can get pretty noisy and Carson Wentz didn’t have to deal with a whole lot of crowd noise in Philly’s one road game in Chicago. And the schedule is about to get real for the Eagles, with a game in Washington and one against the 4-0 Vikings coming up. In fact, in their remaining 12 games they don’t face on that currently has a losing record. Could they look past the Lions, who have been scuffling? Probably not but it’s a game to keep an eye on.

—The Bengals go to Dallas for the first interconference game of the year for both teams. This is the toughest defense that Dak Prescott has faced; I will be very impressed if he comes out of it with his zero interception record intact. Sometimes the adage that games are decided in the trenches is a myth but it’s not going to be the case here. If the Dallas offensive line can control the Bengals’ tough front things could go the Cowboys’ way. If Carlos Dunlap, Geno Atkins, and company get penetration and disrupt Ezekiel Elliott in the backfield it will be hard for the Cowboys to win. With a trip to Green Bay coming up next week this will be a big one for the Cowboys to prevent the possibility of a losing streak going into their bye.

—The Packers had a bye before taking on the Giants on Sunday. New York is on a two-game losing streak and the Giants’ transformed defense that many thought was on the verge of being elite (well, many in New York/New Jersey, anyway) is showing some cracks. They’ve had plenty of problems with Kirk Cousins and Sam Bradford so Aaron Rodgers can’t be a welcome sight.

—The stories surrounding the Giants have been more about Odell Beckham than they have about the Packers. Last year Josh Norman showed that rattling Beckman is a good way to keep him from having a huge day. Since it’s working, the Giants’ offensive coordinator said that defenders who try to bait Beckham are “not man enough” to play him straight up. Head coach Ben McAdoo said he wants him playing with a “salty, physical mindset”. The Giants are circling the wagons and defending Beckham rather than trying to get him to ignore the baiting. Somehow, I doubt that a defensive back will be deterred from trash talking to Beckham and being physical with him because a coordinator challenged his manhood. At least not as long as it works. Beckham is 18th in the NFL in both receptions and receiving yards and he has yet to catch a touchdown pass.

—This week I have a road favorite with the Bengals -1 at the Cowboys and a home favorite with the Vikings giving 6.5 to the Texans. I already have a winner in the bank with the Cardinals easily covering the 3.5 against the 49ers. Last week I “improved” to 1-2, winning with the Raiders over Ravens and losing with the Bucs and Jets.

  1. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - Oct 8, 2016 at 1:45 PM

    Send out the master baiters against OBJ. Kicking nets, too.

    • CHAD - Oct 8, 2016 at 7:17 PM

      I though Beckham likes the men master baitors???? lmao

  2. Skulb - Oct 8, 2016 at 2:39 PM

    Still think the Eagles will come down to earth a bit, that Dallas are lucky to be 3-1 and that the Giants are very bad. It’s not just Little Odell either; it’s Manning on a routine basis playing like someone who has accidentally wandered onto the field rather than as a starting QB in the NFL. His performance against Minnesota was comical.

    • sidepull - Oct 8, 2016 at 2:57 PM

      Manning really unloaded that ball quickly, sometimes too quickly, like he was scared.

    • Trey Gregory - Oct 9, 2016 at 3:03 AM

      I too expect the Eagles to come down to earth a bit. But they’re 3-0 and waxed one of the best teams in the NFL. So what’s that really saying? They’re not some Goliath team that can’t be beat (that’s Minnesota if they can get/stay healthy) but they’re a legitimately good NFL team. It’s not just Wentz. I expect him to struggle a bit eventually. But it’s that defense. And they’re finding ways to get production from their RBs even without Ryan Mathews. Sproles looks like he found the fountain of youth. Smallwood, despite having an unfortunate name, showed enough to be an intreaguing player. Then they have a bunch of #2 receivers. But all that really means is that nobody gets a ton of attention from the secondary and Wentz has plenty of good-but-not-great targets to spread the ball around to. I won’t be shocked at all if Philly wins the division with 10 wins.

      The Giants are obviously struggling right now but I don’t expect that to last. I’m just not one to bet against Eli Manning and I figure that D will click at least a little bit better eventually.

      Dallas… I’m not so sold on. Dak has been a rookie sensation and all. But not against a really good team yet and their defense is just a mess. Reminds me of the other team in the NFC East. People like to compare Dak to Wilson (even though I don’t quite see it). But Wilson didn’t necessarily win games in his first couple years. He had a great defense, with a really good run game, he didn’t turn the ball over, and he made the occasional play with his legs. Dak doesn’t have a great defense and I don’t see him having a Wilson-like-gift to extend plays. He has the run game but eventually that defense will put them in a hole and Dak will have to dig them out in ways Wilson never did. That’s when the true test will come. That’s where even seasoned pro bowlers faulter at times.

      So I’m not so sold on Dallas being much more than an average/slightly above average team. But I think NY and Philly are finishing 1 and 2 in the division. If the Giants don’t finish at least second, with those receivers, a Manning, and a new $200 million defense then they just need to blow it up and start over. That would be a colossal failure. And I would love for Washington to sweep them and finish better. Do you believe in miracles?

      • Skulb - Oct 9, 2016 at 7:28 AM

        Well, I believe in sweeping the Giants this season. Manning does very little for me, and I consider him the worst QB in the NFC East. He can be good, but it’s sporadic and as rare as a sasquatch sighting.
        As for the Eagles, three games is not a large sample size. If there’s one team I expect to find fluke wins against elite teams it’s them. They did it last year with the Patriots. And I need more than three games to feel sure they won’t flop against mediocre teams like they usually also do. Last year’s Lions game comes to mind. They also got blown out by Tampa and lost to Miami at home.

        Different team. But still, more than three games needed. They could probably have done without their super-early bye as well.

      • Skulb - Oct 9, 2016 at 7:39 AM

        Also, Wents has face three weak defenses so far, and will face a fourth weak defense in his fourth game. Let’s see how the Eagles offense does against a proper NFL defense before we make any grand proclamations. he’s had possibly the softest start possible for a rookie, closely.followed by Dak. I’m more impressed by the Eagles defense than I am by anything Wentz has done so far.

  3. sidepull - Oct 8, 2016 at 2:58 PM

    Odella is his own worst enemy.

  4. chad - Oct 8, 2016 at 7:16 PM

    lol omg….not man enough if they talk trash to Beckham??? more like Beckham is not man enough to handle it. he’s the one acting like a high school prom date Lil girl.
    being a man is more then physical, it’s a lot more mental then anything. I find it hugely ironic anyone on the Giants questions someone’s manhood when they have the biggest girly girl wr in any level football.

    • Skulb - Oct 9, 2016 at 12:12 AM

      My prom date had dark hair, was shy and had large…um…pecs. Nothing like Little Odell at all. Archives

Follow Us On Twitter