The NY Giants open the 2021 NFL season on Sunday afternoon against the Denver Broncos at MetLife Stadium, and it will take strong performances from key players to pull off an upset
Sunday, the new-look NY Giants host the Denver Broncos, aiming to take the first step towards returning to the postseason for the first time since 2016 but will be doing so against one of the more explosive receiving corps and dominant defensive front-sevens in the NFL.
There’s a chance NY Giants running back Saquon Barkley will take the field for the first time since tearing his ACL in Week 2 of the 2020 campaign. Meanwhile, the Giants will be fielding a new-look offensive line, and potentially debuting new weapons Kenny Golladay and Kadarius Toney at wide receiver.
But, will it be enough to withstand a Broncos defense that features future Hall of Famer Von Miller and Bradley Chubb up front?
Can the NY Giants contain Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler over the top, and pull off the upset as a home underdog?
These four players must step up if the NY Giants are going to beat the Denver Broncos Week 1:
NY Giants LT – Andrew Thomas
Thomas’ disastrous performance against Matt Joudon and the New England Patriots, in the NY Giants’ preseason finale against the New England Patriots, triggered a week’s worth of rebuilding the offensive line via the waiver wire and bottom of the roster additions; Ryan Price and Ben Bredeson, while triggering much concern about the line as a whole.
Things won’t get any easier for Thomas on Sunday afternoon, against future Hall of Famer Von Miller, Bradley Chubb, and emerging edge rusher Malik Reed.
Chubb and Reed combined for 16 sacks and 93 total pressures, and Miller returns as the focal point of Denver’s front-seven.
Thomas will need to prove capable of anchoring the NY Giants’ offensive line, facing a daunting challenge right out of the chute. Last season, Thomas allowed 10 sacks, eight quarterback hits, and 57 pressures during a wild inconsistent rookie season.
The No. 4 overall pick will need to play substantially better, if quarterback Daniel Jones and the offense have any hope of keeping pace with what promises to be an explosive Broncos offense.