2020 Dynasty/Fantasy Week 14 Game Analysis: Cardinals 26, Giants 7
I take notes during the live watch. I re-watch the game on tape looking for hidden clues to report on. Here are my notes/takes on what I saw and how it related to FF 2020. I write anywhere from 1,000-3,000+ words on each game, and I must move fast to get to all of them through the week…so, please forgive any typos/grammar.
The Giants have a pesky/solid/scrappy team…one that shocked a lot of people Week 13 with a defensive beat down of the Seahawks – their 4th win in-a-row. The Giants had momentum coming into this game, everything to play for (the NFC East lead), and they got their starting QB back. All those positives…and the Arizona Cardinals just went in and drop kicked them at their home.
It was 13-0 Arizona at the half. 20-0 Cards midway through the 3rd-quarter. The game was never much in doubt. Why? The Cardinals defense is really, really good. When they get a favorable opponent, they tend to squash them with their defense…regardless of what their offense does. Arizona planted 8 sacks on the Giants in this game on top of holding them to just 7 points…and that was a lucky TD (set up by a lucky bomb catch/Hail Mary throw to the goal line).
It will be noted in the mainstream as ‘a Giants collapse’ but it should be noted as a strong Arizona win in a stretch where the Cardinals have been playing nothing but top NFL teams/playoff teams. This was a needed, quality win for Arizona…a team I’m starting to sense is a lot better than I thought a few weeks ago. It’s a schedule-based stumble of late, and they’ve been in every game they lost. Beware of the Cardinals…there are growing through matchups with top opponents.
Arizona is now (7-6) and one more win probably has them in the playoffs, but two more definitely does. Not an easy schedule ahead…PHI-SF-LAR, but it’s easier than they’ve had the pas 8 weeks. We see Arizona getting to (8-8) for sure and a likely playoff spot, but (9-7) and a near lock for the playoffs is just as likely.
The Giants ran into a buzzsaw here. They had won four in-a-row prior and five of their previous 7 games. They fall to (5-8), a game behind (6-7) Washington. This NYG team is OK/good not good/great and has two tough battles ahead (CLE and BAL). It’s likely too much of an uphill battle for them now. A projected (6-10) finish and falling short of the NFC East and wild card.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- The Kyler Murray (24-35 for 244 yards, 13-47-0) Report…
Everything is fine, but just a ‘meh’ FF tally here. This is a tough defense to put numbers on, so not shocking. That’s why we had him closer to #10 for the week than #1 in QB rankings.
Kyler had shots at TDs – one drive halted at the goal line, another wound up an easy Drake plunge. Kyler ran more this week. But Arizona got up big and just sat on NYG from there…no need for any electricity from Kyler. No Kyler worries from this game at all.
-- Kenyan Drake (23-80-1, 1-10-0/1) had another plodding game, and even had two fumbles…but nothing is keeping him away from 17+ carries and goal line TDs of late. It is what it is. Ride it if you got it.
Chase Edmonds (7-32-0, 4-21-0/5) is just a rotational, pass game back. Likely to miss this week’s game with injury.
-- Which Dan Arnold (2-27-1/4) do you see?
a) The one who has 4 TDs in his 3 last games…after none his first 7 games of 2020?
b) The one who has yet to see more than 4 targets in any game and who has been under 35 yards in nine of his 11 games this season?
Arnold is capable of bigger, better things…one of the most physically gifted TEs in the NFL – but this offense doesn’t really ride the TE, like ever. Just a high point TD throw luxury for Kyler right now. Hopefully, he’s moving/going higher…but I still see low level usage with a recent TD spike.
-- You might as well just ignore all the NYG receivers from here on in.
If Daniel Jones (11-21 for 127 yards, 0 TD/0 INT) isn’t running to keep defenses honest (and he can’t because he’s hurt) and if Colt McCoy (2-3 for 18 yards, 0 TD/0 INT) is playing on purpose – don’t even bother with the NYG receivers.
The Giants are #31 in passing TDs (9) this season. Only NE with 8 TD passes is lower. NYG is #30 in passing yards on the season.
Evan Engram (2-18-0/4) is possibly playable, just because of the weak options anyone has at TE week-to-week. But it’s shaky…like it’s been all season.
-- The non-Hopkins Arizona WR’s Report…
Larry Fitzgerald (2-10-0/3) was back from COVID. Which Kliff Kingsbury then decided to make Andy Isabella (DNP) inactive, thus placing the final nail in the coffin on Andy’s Arizona career, I would think. They have to cut or trade him this offseason. I fear they keep him as a #4-5 WR for the next two years and waste his career.
The Larry Fitz replacement in 2021, if he retires, is potentially KeeSean Johnson (1-9-0/2) but that’s not a for-sure thing.
I suspect Christian Kirk (3-14-0/4) will be traded/he wants out of this offense in 2021+.
There could be more WRs drafted or one signed in free agency and then it’s Hopkins + ____ and ____ as the #1-2-3 receiver’s next season. After Hopkins, the rest of them have been pretty FF-useless/inconsistent in this Air Raid save for a Kirk TD spike/blip several weeks ago.
-- ARI LB/DE Haason Reddick (5 tackles, 5.0 sacks) racked up five sacks in this game…6 QB hits total. Reddick had no sacks his prior five games, so this is likely an NYG problem not a Reddick uprising.
ARI LB Dennis Gardeck (2 tackles, 2.0 sacks) has 3.0 sacks in his last 2 games. I wish it was a breakout performance but he’s only playing 4-20% of the snaps in games. They aren’t committed to him, even though he could be good/great…per me/my scouting.
Snap Counts of Interest:
27 = Gallman
06 = Alf Morris
51 = Maxx Williams
27 = DeValve
24 = Arnold