By Liam Day
Coming off of a rather disappointing defensive year for the New York Giants in 2015, the team has made a complete turnaround through the first 11 weeks of the season. New York’s offense fell to one of the least productive in the league. However, the Giant’s defense has bailed the team out in many late-game situations. Second year free safety, Landon Collins, lead the team in tackles, interceptions, and even sacks.
Production by the defense has been relatively slow despite Collins’ exceptional individual performance. The Giants are last in the league in sacks, even with their fifty million dollar defensive line. The highest paid defensive end in the league, Oliver Vernon, has come up with only two sacks halfway through the season.
Odell Beckham on the other hand has had a rather up and down season having two games with less than fifty yards receiving, but one game with over two-hundred yards and two touchdowns. His high expectations have made him a number one target for defenses resulting in double teams throughout the game. Knowing this, quarterback Eli Manning has struggled to get Beckham the ball or even look his way on multiple plays.
Through the team's success, who has played better? From a statistical point of view, Landon Collins has looked liked the most productive player on the Giants Defense. Currently, he is the frontrunner in the defensive player of the year category, leading the team with five interceptions, along with three sacks to go with it. Strong safety, Andrew Adams said, “He’s got a lot of plays under his belt even though he’s a second-year player.” Collins has been able to keep the Giants defense in check through the first eight weeks of the season. They have been ranked as the 18th best defense in the league and the 12th overall.
Odell Beckham’s unthinkable performance through his first three years in the league has put a target on his head to defenses that must face him. During the offseason, he was projected to be one of the league's top five wide-receivers once again. This has not been the case this season, as Beckham has struggled to get involved early in games with only two first half touchdowns this season, and eight touchdowns total. He has been ranked as the 5th best receiver in the league through week twelve with just over 900 receiving yards.
Landon Collins has shined in his second year in the league and has surprised teams with his quick transition from a starting safety to a star safety. Beckham’s play has been exceptional this year but will have to improve by the end of the season to keep his reputation as the star of the Giants.
By Ryan Hack
The NFL playoffs are approaching, and many fans are wondering who is making it to the postseason this season. As the season continues, teams will be clinching seeds and be eliminated from playoff contention. As of week fourteen, it is mathematically impossible for the San Francisco 49ers, Cleveland Browns, Los Angeles Rams, Chicago Bears, New York Jets, and Jacksonville Jaguars to make the playoffs. Only the Dallas Cowboys have clinched a playoff berth through week thirteen with a 11-1 record, losing week one by a score of 20-19 to the New York Giants. However, they did lose in week fourteen to the New York Giants again, dropping to 11-2.
A survey was conducted to see what students around Glenelg think about who will be making the playoffs in a couple weeks. 61.3% of surveyed students think the Baltimore Ravens will win the AFC North, and the remaining 38.7% think the Pittsburgh Steelers will take the division. The Steelers have a one game lead in the division entering week fifteen. In the AFC East, all the students that were surveyed picked the New England Patriots, who only need one win or tie in the final three games to win the division. The closest race is located in the AFC South where two teams have a 7-6 record through the first thirteen games, while Indianapolis is only one game back. 58.1% picked the Houston Texans to win the division, 38.7% picked the Tennessee Titans, and 3.2% said the Indianapolis Colts. However the best division in terms of record, the AFC West, has three teams with eight wins or more out of twelve. The results showed the Oakland Raiders would win, Kansas City and Denver falling right behind. Entering week fifteen, the Kansas City Chiefs lead the AFC West. The last two seeds in the playoffs come from the two wildcards given to the two teams that have the best records in the AFC. Results show that the Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs would receive a playoff berth, over the Miami Dolphins, Indianapolis Colts, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Tennessee Titans.
In addition to the six teams that make the playoffs in the AFC, six teams reach the postseason in the NFC. Of the thirty-one people surveyed, all of the students says the Seattle Seahawks will win the NFC West. The NFC East will most likely be won by the Dallas Cowboys in week fourteen as they host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday Night Football. 58.1% of students predicted the Detroit Lions to win the NFC North, while the other 41.9% predicted the Minnesota Vikings. Down south, the Atlanta Falcons are looking like the favorites to 77.4%, while the other 22.6% belong to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. While the fight for the NFC South continues, the Seattle Seahawks are pulling ahead of the NFC West. The last two teams that will make the playoffs will take the wildcards, which is a tight race through week 14. Of the thirty-one people surveyed, the top two favorites are the New York Giants and the Washington Redskins, however, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Green Bay Packers, and Minnesota Vikings.
The Wild Card round of the playoffs stars on Saturday, January 7, 2016. We will just have to wait and see.
By Sayo Jolayemi
Former rookie of the year Andrew Wiggins lately has taken the backseat to sophomore player Karl-Anthony Towns. Going up against another rebuilding team, The Los Angeles Lakers, many future Allstars had the opportunity to showcase their dominance. And with 47 points on 14 of 21 shooting Andrew Wiggins did just that. The budding talent changed the dynamic of the game scoring a career high, and, leading the Timberwolves to the 125-99 victory over the Lakers.
Entering the season, the Lakers were believed to be a step behind the Wolves in the process, but they won six of their first ten games while Minnesota got off to a disappointing 2-6 start. Both teams played on Saturday night, but the Wolves were finishing a rare home back-to-back, and appeared to have the fresher legs all night. The Timberwolves scored 21 points off of 17 Lakers turnovers. The Timberwolves started the game strong scoring 36 in the first quarter, and never looked backed leading the entire way. Wiggins lead the game in points with Towns and Nemanja Belgia combining for 44 in a valiant sidekick performance.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are now 3-6, and though they are unlikely to advance beyond the regular season, they will remain a fun team to watch develop in the upcoming years. With leaders in Towns and Wiggins and future key role players Kris Dunn and Zach Lavine, this young team has a bright future and can easily position themselves for a run at the championship trophy. The Lakers will still be around to challenge them however so nothing is guaranteed.
By Philip Johnson
Local teen Philip Johnson reportedly watched the Cincinnati Bengals game that occured September 29th, at 8:30 pm. The Bengals faced off against the Miami Dolphins in an interconference matchup.
Johnson made sure to wear his favorite Giovani Bernard jersey while watching the game. The Bengals started fast but ended their first drive with a measly field goal to which Johnson was not satisfied. He believes this team is overloaded with talent as he said “Dad, we’re way too good to be kicking field goals against the Dolphins. This kind of red zone execution is trash.” Johnson's younger sister, however hates it when the Bengals come on TV because her brother gets way too excited. When the Dolphins scored Johnson got upset and she responded,
“Shut up, I'm doing homework”. Since the Bengals are rarely broadcasted in the area there was no way Johnson was missing this one. In fact he almost missed the start of the game trying to find his jersey.
When it got to around 10:30, Johnson's dad told him he had to go to bed. After hearing this, he snuck downstairs to watch the rest of the third quarter. Unfortunately once his dad found out he got yelled at. Of course a fan at his level always streams the game on his phone under the covers so his dad can't see.
When the game ended it was 11:50 and Johnson still had homework to be done, he finished that, but rewatched the highlights of the game a few times. He went to sleep with a happy heart, and forgot to take off his jersey, so now it's wrinkled.