Thursday Night Preview
Giants at Panthers
The defending champion New York Giants travel to Carolina to play the up and coming Carolina Panthers. Each team enters play with a record of 1-1, and both have legitimate injury concerns to worry about. Big Blue is without wideouts Hakeem Nicks and Domenik Hixon, and running back Ahmad Bradshaw, while the Big Cats may be without The Daily Show (running back Jonathan Stewart).
This is a tough one to predict. Which Eli Manning is going to show up? The one
that throws three interceptions and just shrugs and says “Aw shucks”, or the one
that throws for 500 yards and three touchdowns? Well, that’s a trick question, because it’s the same damn man doing it at the same damn time. You can’t trust Eli, but you can depend on him. If he has to throw 7 interceptions just to throw 8 touchdowns, he’ll do it. He’s an enigma.
Cam Newton, on the other hand, is easier to figure out. He’s going to run through
you. Not around you, not near you, but straight through you. And you will fall down, possibly get the wind knocked out of you, and have to watch him do his Superman dance over your internally bleeding body. He’s just a force, as I’ve written about before (Newton’s Laws). But he can beat you throwing the ball too. And this Giants secondary has shown the uncanny ability to get beat on deep throws, short throws, and shuttle throws. Wide receiver Brandon LaFell could have a Kevin Ogletree-esqe game tonight if the defense focuses on Steve Smith too much.
Last year the Panthers picked off Eli three times, but he came back to throw three
touchdowns. I like him, but I can’t pick a team led by Butters Stotch to win here. I just can’t. Panthers 35-31.