The Giants’ defense is already down one of their best players, which means more pressure for the D line to perform.
Sunday night’s game between the NY Giants and the Cleveland Browns is setting up to be an old school, smash mouth kind of game.
The Giants enter Week 15 with the seventh best rushing defense in the league, currently giving up just 101.5 yards per game. The Browns enter with the third best rushing offense in the league, currently raking up 156.2 yards per game.
And that’s just one reason why it might get chippy this Sunday.
There’s so many revenge story lines it’s hard to keep track. Freddie Kitchens, whom the Browns fired after just one season as head coach, will be calling the plays for the Giants with offensive coordinator Jason Garrett out.
Jabrill Peppers, who was traded from Cleveland to NY for Odell Beckham Jr., would have already been playing with a chip on his shoulder this game. But now he has even more responsibility with James Bradberry also missing the game.
Olivier Vernon — who spent three frustrating years with the Giants, totaling 22 sacks, making one Pro Bowl, but missing nine games — looks to add to his seven sacks this season. His season-high with Big Blue was 8.5.
And he’ll be looking to bring down Giants’ starting quarterback Colt McCoy, who was drafted by Cleveland in the third round in 2010 and spent his first three years in the NFL on the Browns, collecting a record of 6-15 in the 21 games he started.
Many players on the field Sunday will have much to prove. But the biggest battle comes down to the Giants’ defensive line against the Browns’ two-headed rushing monster.