Hoping For A Good Thursday Night Matchup For Once
Thursday Night Football brings us two teams going in different directions.
The New York Giants (10-4) have won two straight and seven of eight. The Philadelphia Eagles (5-9) have lost their last five and nine of 11.
But they’re NFC East rivals, the Giants can clinch a playoff berth if they win and the game is in Philly. So there will be more than a little noise from the national audience but especially the boisterous (that’s a nice way of saying drunken and obscene) fans at Lincoln Financial Field. We’ll stick with boisterous.
“It is a pretty ruthless place,” says Giants receiver Odell Beckham Jr.
Well, no job is easy. If the Giants win, they’re in the playoffs for the first time since 2011. Their hopes of winning the NFC require victories in the final two games and at least one loss by the Dallas Cowboys, who’ve dropped two games to the Giants and none to anyone else.
The Giants’ emergence starts with its defense, which doesn’t feature many “name” players, though safety Landon Collins keeps building his reputation. The short-passing style of the Eagles shouldn’t be too big a problem to handle.
But if the Giants don’t win? Well, they can still reap the rewards of the successes behind them. A loss by Detroit, Atlanta, Green Bay or Tampa Bay will also put the Giants in the playoffs.
After so many weeks of either bad matchups or good matchups that never turned into good games, let us hope this one on the dread-inducing Thursday night – with one team trying to clinch and the other desperately wanting to prevent that occurrence on its home field – measures up.
Post By: Larry Weisman, a longtime sportswriter for USA TODAY, blogs for Twistity.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrLarryWeisman