Without Odell Beckham Jr., the Giants struggled to push the ball downfield. Eli Manning managed a mere 198 net passing yards with no touchdowns and an interception and if not for a field goal in the third quarter, Big Blue would have had a big fat zero on the scoreboard.
It’s unknown whether Beckham will be ready to go Monday night, but the Lions finished Week 1 as the seventh-best pass-coverage unit in the league per Pro Football Focus. Plus, during last year’s Week 15 matchup, Lions cornerback Darius Slay and safety Glover Quinn limited Beckham to three catches for 31 yards and no touchdowns.
Strength (and Weakness?): This year’s Saints are a new creation. After eons of relying almost exclusively on Drew Brees and the air game, New Orleans shredded teams on the ground in 2017 with the spicy combination of Mark Ingram and rookie Alvin Kamara. By the numbers, they’re the first pair of teammate backs to each record 1,500-plus scrimmage yards. To the eyes, they’re a brilliant meshing of rare individual gifts.
That included a whopping six takedowns each against the Bucs and Vikings. The Panthers have a shot if they can rattle the likes of Brees, Keenum and Goff when it matters most. I’d also point to a ground game that, when it’s on, can pound away with Jonathan Stewart, a surging Christian McCaffrey and Cam Newton doing Cam Newton-like things.
His feet hardly left the floor on a 3-pointer that rolled around the rim and in. He also managed to hit a turnaround jumper and calmly made two free throws to ice the game with 8 seconds left.
Davis, who fouled out in the first overtime, called Cousins’ performance “legendary,” adding that his fellow big man — more than anyone — earned the day off from practice the Pelicans were given on Tuesday.
Marquee teams have not played up to expectations. The New England Patriots, coming off their fifth Super Bowl title with Bill Belichick as their coach and Tom Brady as their quarterback, opened the season with a stunning loss to the Chiefs and have a record of 3-2. The Cowboys, who led a post-election partial recovery in TV viewership last season, are 2-3 following the last-second defeat Sunday to the Packers. The Chiefs remain the NFL’s only unbeaten team.