Around 4 p.m. Sunday at MetLife Stadium, at least one team will end its losing ways.
Of course, the way things have been going for the New York Giants and Los Angeles Chargers — both 0-4 — they might stumble their way into a tie and still remain winless.
It’s been a long month for these two teams, who both have to be thinking this is the week their season turns around. For that to happen for Big Blue, these simple things need to happen.
Stand their ground
Last week’s 25-23 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers marked the second game in a row in which the Giants lost on a field goal as time expired. That’s brutal, but entirely preventable.
In Week 3, Brad Wing’s poor punt with 19 seconds to go gave the Philadelphia Eagles the ball at their own 38. Three plays later, they nailed an incredible 61-yard kick for the win.
Against the Bucs, the G-Men let quarterback Jameis Winston march 62 yards in 2 minutes. Tampa gained at least 4 yards on each of their six plays before a pair of clock-killing kneeldowns to set up a 34-yarder to win it.
Defense and special teams cannot afford late-game lapses like that against anyone, not even the winless Chargers.
The Giants are terrible at running the ball this year, but the Chargers could be the remedy.
The newest L.A. team gives up 4.8 yards per carry, 28th in the NFL. In consecutive weeks, they’ve allowed 189 and 214 yards on the ground.
If running back Paul Perkins (1.9 ypc) and his offensive line can’t improve their 3.2 yards per attempt in Week 5, it might be time to give up on the notion that they will at all in 2017.
Put up some points
Only one team averages fewer points per game than the Giants (15 ppg). That one team is the Miami Dolphins, and even they beat the Chargers earlier this season.
Having said that, L.A. has lost three games by a combined seven points, and the other game was a loss to the last unbeaten team, the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chargers’ defense hasn’t been stomped yet, allowing no more than 26 points.
With a vulnerable opposing secondary, this is the week quarterback Eli Manning must put up vintage numbers and embolden his Giants teammates.