The New York Giants face the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. The Giants (1-5) are playing a superior opponent in the Panthers (3-3). New York has disappointed in every facet of the game this year, but their defense has been an extreme blunder.
The New York Giants have invested a great number of assets into their defensive line. Leonard Williams is signed to a mega-contract. Dexter Lawrence is a former first-round pick lining up opposite Williams. Despite these two great talents, the Giants’ defense has struggled mightily to stop the run this season.
Blake Martinez, a premiere run-defender and the Giants’ best linebacker, is out for the year after suffering a torn ACL in Week Three. New York has not been able to stop the run effectively since then. However, if the Giants want to beat the Panthers on Sunday, they need their run defense to step up.
The New York Giants run defense
The Giants rank 29th in rushing defense through the first six weeks of the season. They will face the Panthers’ offense that ranks 16th in rushing at 109.5 yards per game. Rookie running back Chubba Hubbard will get the start in Carolina’s backfield with Christian McCaffery out.
“You’ll see a vastly different look from us moving forward. We’re not going to line up and drop back and throw it 40 times a game and think that’s going to win the game for us. It hasn’t. So there’s no McCaffrey, Chuba [Hubbard is] showing us he can run the ball at a high level when given enough opportunities.” – Panthers head coach Matt Rhule on the team’s offensive approach.
It is clear what the Carolina Panthers’ gameplan is on Sunday: run the football. Going up against a New York Giants’ defense that is struggling tremendously to defend the run, the Panthers are planning on pounding the rock against New York. If the Giants want to get their second win of the season, they will need their run defense to step up and shut down Chubba Hubbard and the Carolina Panthers.