Giants welcome Saints fresh off critical first victory of season

The New York Giants aren’t done yet.With a 27-22 victory on the road against the Houston Texans, Big Blue comes …

The New York Giants aren’t done yet.

With a 27-22 victory on the road against the Houston Texans, Big Blue comes home to host the New Orleans Saints (2-1) on Sunday afternoon with a chance to move to .500 for the first time since 2016.

Having avoided a second consecutive 0-3 start, here are three keys to Sunday’s game.

‘Madden’-ing football

Watching the Saints in action this year has been like watching video game football. No team’s games have produced more points than theirs — a combined 207 — but that has come thanks to both a potent offense and a leaky defense that’s averaging 34.7 and 34.3 points per game, respectively.

That runs in contrast to the Giants, who have yet to score or allow more than 30 points. Big Blue’s faithful suffered through offensive impotence for most of the first two games before coming alive in Houston.

Given the talent on the Giants’ offense, look for a more Saints-like, high-scoring affair that could make this anyone’s game all the way to the end.

Throwback Eli

It’s no secret that Eli Manning has not been his old self for many years, but now and again he can put together a vintage performance. But, even at his peak, he was rarely as good as he was last Sunday against the Texans.

Manning completed 25-of-29 passes for 297 yards and two touchdowns, posting an 86.2 completion percentage and 132.3 passer rating. The latter two stats rank second and 10th, respectively, among his 217 career starts.

The Giants’ cannot bank on a repeat of that magnitude this week, but if the two-time Super Bowl champion is clicking with receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Sterling Shepard, they’ll be just fine.

Unstoppable Alvin

Even with quarterback Drew Brees — the NFL’s all-time completions leader as of last week — still playing at an elite level, the most dangerous visiting player at MetLife Stadium this weekend is running back Alvin Kamara.

A potent runner and outstanding weapon in the passing game, Kamara is the do-all threat that has driven the Saints’ resurgence since his 2017 debut. He’s the player most capable of single-handedly ruining the Giants’ day.

Cornerback Janoris Jenkins will have his hands full with the NFL’s top receiver, Michael Thomas, so it will be up to safety Landon Collins and company to keep Kamara from another big day.

Scott’s prediction

Giants 34, Saints 30

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