Overview of New York Giants’ 9 general manager candidates

joe schoen, giants

After what felt like an endless nightmare, Dave Gettleman’s tenure as the Vice President and General Manager of the New York Giants is over. Along with the end of the Gettleman era, Giants Head Coach Joe Judge has also been relieved of his duties. Finally, after four years of pain during Dave Gettleman’s 19-46, it’s starting to seem like there is a little bit of hope for the Giants due to the very impressive list of GM candidates that have been assembled so far.

The Giants have requested to interview 9 candidates with no prior ties to the franchise, a stark contrast to the 2017 GM search, which only contained one outside candidate: ESPN personality Louis Riddick.

Here’s a quick look at the 9 current GM candidates:

Joe Schoen – 43

Schoen is the current Asst. GM of the Buffalo Bills and was hired from the Dolphins, where he served as the director of player personnel from 2014-2017 after being internally promoted from being a college scout from 2009-2014. Schoen spent his first NFL years as a ticketing intern for the Panthers and later served as a scouting assistant until Miami hired him.

Schoen has just completed his first interview with the Giants; Co-owner Steve Tisch attended the meeting along with John and Chris Mara. The Giants are very intrigued by Schoen, and he seems to be the leading candidate as of now, partially due to his endorsement by former Coach Bill Parcells. Expect to hear his name come up often throughout this process, as the Vikings and Bears have also requested interviews.

Per uSTADIUM, Joe Schoen “crushed” his interview with the Giants.

Ryan Poles – 36

Poles took a job with the Cheifs back in 2009 and has been with the organization for the last 13 years, starting as a scouting assistant and working his way up to Director of Player Personnel.

The former college offensive lineman plays a key role in KC’s drafting strategy, serving as General Manager Brett Veach’s right-hand man in the war room. Poles was also involved in the rapid reconfiguration of the Cheifs O-Line following last year’s disastrous Super Bowl performance. Poles is especially attractive for a Giants organization that has been starving for good offensive line play and for a quarterback in Daniel Jones, who has been pressured practically as much as anyone in the NFL through his first three years.

Monti Ossenfort – 43

Currently, the Director of Player Personnel for the Titans since 2020, Monti Ossenfort has spent 16 years working his way through various scouting departments of the Patriots organization. According to Joe Rexrode, Ossenfort’s specialty lies in scouting college players, but he also manages the ready lists for the Titans.

Ossenfort had a strong relationship with former HC Joe Judge but is still a strong candidate without that connection. He was interviewed twice for the Panthers’ job opening last year and was also interviewed by the Browns in 2020.

Ryan Cowden – 43

Ossenfort’s Titans counterpart, Cowden, is in his 22nd NFL season and his 6th with the Titans. After 16 years with the Panthers’ organization, Cowden was offered to be the Director of Player Personnel for the Titans and was promoted to Vice President of Player Personnel in 2018. Cowden oversees all aspects of the Tennessee Titans scouting department and is widely considered to be in line for a GM job in the near future.

Adam Peters – 42

The 49ers’ Assistant GM is speculated to be one of the Giants’ top choices for their GM vacancy. Peters has 18 years of NFL experience, working his way up through the Patriots (2003-2008) and the Broncos (2009-2014) before becoming the 49ers VP of Player Personnel before the 2015 season. When current 49ers GM John Lynch was hired, he had no prior FO experience and hired Peters to be his right-hand man. According to John Barrows, “Peters has run the 49ers drafts since 2017.”

Ran Carthon – 40

Carthon has taken over Peters’ former position with the 49ers as the VP of Player Personnel during the 2021 NFL season. He previously served as the 49ers Director of Pro Personnel (2017-2020), the Rams’ Director of Player Personnel (2012-2016),  and cut his teeth as a pro scout for the falcons. The bears have also requested to interview Carthon.

Adrian Wilson – 42

Wilson is a former 5x Pro Bowl safety for the Arizona Cardinals and now serves as their Vice President of Pro Personnel. Previously, Wilson spent three years following his retirement from the NFL in 2015 as a scouting assistant for the Cardinals. Quickly rising through the Cardinals ranks, expect Wilson to be an active candidate during the Giants’ search.

Quentin Harris – 44

Harris, the Cardinals’ current VP of Player Personnel, was also a former Cardinals safety and has been with the front office for 14 years. According to the Cardinals, “Harris currently works alongside GM Steve Keim, managing both the college and pro personnel departments. His duties include evaluating the top college prospects nationally as well as the organization and implementation of the draft process. He oversees the pro personnel department, which includes player acquisition, evaluation, and assisting with player contract negotiations.”

Joe Hortiz – 47

Hortiz is currently in his 19th season with the Ravens’ Front Office and his 7th as the director of college scouting. Hortiz oversees all aspects of college scouting and is an especially attractive candidate due to the massive success that the Ravens have seen with their draft classes since he took over. Hortiz, who joined the organization in 1998, spent eight years as a scout for Baltimore before transitioning to a front office position.


New York Yankees Top 10s: The best Yankee seasons throughout history

The New York Yankees ponder if there will be a 2022 baseball season due to the COVID-19 coronavirus and failure to agree to a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. So, I thought it would be an excellent time to take an in-depth look at Yankees seasons of the past and decide for myself which season was the best. I looked at each season as a whole: who the players were, how many games were played, the season stats if they won the World Series, and if they did, how dominant they were.

You may find that I differ a bit from some other writers, and that’s okay; it’s what makes being a Yankee fan so special. So, here goes my top 10 Yankee seasons.

10a. 1954 154 games

During the season, the team racked up 103 wins against 51 losses and a winning percentage of .630, which is why it is included on this list. It was a year when the St. Louis Browns moved to Baltimore and became the Baltimore Orioles. Casey Stengel managed the Yankees. That year, catcher Yogi Berra was named season MVP. However, even with Micky Mantle, Phil Rizzuto, Gil McDougald, and Yogi on the team, they couldn’t reach the World Series; they fell eight games behind the Cleveland Indians. The latter was eventually shut out in the series by the New York Giants.

10b. 2019 162 games.

2019 was a heartbreaking year. In Aaron Boone’s second year as New York Yankee manager, he won 103 games with the Yankees. It was a year with the most injuries in team history, but with the team’s depth, including step-ups from the minor leagues, they were able to have one of the best seasons in team history. The team swept the Minnesota Twins in the ALDS and went to the ALCS against the Houston Astros that they lost in six games. The Yankees may have been denied a World Series berth as the team may have cheated in the ALCS. MLB  proved they did cheat in 2017 when they won the World Series, and although never proven, many Yankee fans think the same was true of 2019.

9. 1950 154 games

1950 was a big year for the little shortstop known as Phil Rizutto; he played so well he was named the Yankee’s MVP. The team was 98-56, with a winning percentage of .636. That year the Yankees took the Philadelphia Phillies in the World Series via the shutout. It was a year that Vern Bickford would pitch a no-hitter for the Yankees on August 9th. Yankee rookie Bob Grim was the AL Rookie of the Year.

8. 1936 153 games

For 1936 the Yankees went 102-51 with a .667 winning percentage. The year was all about Yankee star Lou Gehrig, and he was named season MVP. The Yankees won the World Series over the New York Giants, the San Francisco Giants, four games to two. It was a year that would see two of its Yankee players eventually reach the Baseball Hall of Fame, Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. Gehrig, for the year, batted .354 with 49 home runs tying his all-time record. He would also have an unbelievable 166 runs batted in.

7. 2009 162 games

2009 was an exciting year for the Yankees. Hideki Matsui was in the seventh year of his contract. He hit .271 while hitting 28 home runs. His performance in the World Series that year won him the title of World Series MVP. The team went 103-59 with a .636 winning percentage. The New York Yankees took the Philadelphia Phillies in the World Series four games to two. Manager Joe Girardi in his third year as Yankee manager brought the Yankees to the World Series and won it for the first time since 2000 when manager Joe Torre had his last World Series win. It would also mark the last time the Yankees would win a World Series, spawning a twelve-year drought that the Yankees hope to end soon.

6. 1923 152 games

Babe Ruth had one of his best years in 1923, he scored 177 runs, hit 59 homers, and hit .378 on the season and was named the MVP. The team went 98-54, a .645 winning percentage. The Yankees won the World Series that year over the old New York Giants 4 games to 2. Manager Miller Huggins brought the Yankees to their first-ever World Series that year. For that reason, many believe this may have been the best Yankee season ever, however emotion aside, the stats just don’t support that. Babe Ruth did hit 41 home runs that year, with 141 runs batted in.

5. 1942 154 games

In 1942 the country was deep in the throes of World War II. The country needed a boast and hope; the 1942 Yankees provided that hope. The team stats were 103-51 .669. Joe Gordon was the MVP for the season that ended with the St. Louis Cardinals beating the Yankees in the World Series four games to one. The 1942 New York Yankees came in number five on my list as it was one of the greatest seasons in their history, even though they did not win the World Series. Their .669 winning percentage is sufficient to have them on this list.

4. 1939 151 games

The 1939 Yankee stats were 106-45 .702. Joe DiMaggio was the season MVP, and the Yankees won the World Series over the Cincinnati Reds in a four-game shut-out. 1939 was one of the most exciting baseball seasons for the Yankees. Joe DiMaggio graced center field while the Yankees won their 4th largest number of games in their history. Joe McCarthy’s Yankees matched the Reds in the World Series in hits with 27, but out-homered them 7 to 0 and out-scored them 20-8. Charlie Keller led the Yanks with seven hits, three home runs, six RBI, eight runs scored, a .438 average, and a 1.188 slugging percentage

3. 1961 162 games

The New York Yankees had one of the more exciting baseball seasons in 1961. Their stats were 109-53 .673. They won the World Series over the Cincinnati Reds 4 games to 1. Roger Maris was the season MVP. Whitey Ford was the World Series MVP. He won the Cy Young Award that year. What added tremendous interest to the year was the M&M boy’s home run race. Throughout the year, Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris fought to excel above each other in their number of home runs hit. Roger Maris won the race with 61 home runs, which was an MLB record at the time.

2. 1998 162 games

The 1998 Yankees are considered by many as the best Yankee team ever. There is no question that the season produced the most games won by any Yankee team. However, they did not have the winningest season. The stats are 114-48 and a winning percentage of .704. That year, they won the World Series over the San Diego Padres. Joe Torre won his second manager of the year award, and Scott Brosius was the World Series MVP. Another reason that fans place the 1998 team ahead of all others is that it is in the memory of many present-day Yankee fans.

1. 1927 154 games

During the year 1927, the New York Yankees won 110 games and lost only 44 games; that’s a .714 winning percentage. Lou Gehrig was the MVP of the season. That year the Yankees won the World Series by shutting out the Pittsburgh Pirates. Many baseball writers give this number one placement to the 1998 team or the 1923 Yankees. I placed the 1927 team over the 1998 teams because their total of 110 wins was accomplished in only 154 games. The 1923 team also did not sweep in the World Series.

Interesting season facts

Honorable Mention 1950 98-56 .636, Phil Rizzuto was the MVP. The Yankees won the World Series against the Phillies. 1947 97-57 .630 Joe DiMaggio was the MVP. The Yankees bested the Dodgers in the World Series. 1977 100-62 .617, Reggie Jackson was the World Series MVP in the win over the Kansas City Royals.

The Yankees’ worst season ever was in 1908, when they lost 103 games. They came in 39 1/2 games behind the Detroit Tigers. The Yankees lost the World Series 12 times in their 39 appearances. The Yankees have had 78 seasons with no MVP. However, the MVP award was not instituted until 1931. The Yankees have had three stretches where the team did not play well: 1903 to 1922 under several managers., although they did win 92 games in 1904. 1963 to 1975, when the CBS ownership let the team and stadium go and again from 1979 to 1994.

Under George M. Steinbrenner’s ownership since 1973, the Yankees won 7 World Championships, 16 division titles, and 11 American League Championships, becoming the winningest Yankee owner ever. The Steinbrenner family owns the team that hopes to see many more championships in the future. The New York Yankees are the winningest team in all of the sports with 27 World Championships.

EmpireSportsMedia.com’s Columnist William Parlee is a member of the Society for American Baseball Research.


Knicks’ Julius Randle details what the team is missing in recent losses

julius randle, knicks

The New York Knicks are facing a bit of an identity crisis just eight games into the season. As the players continue to gel and develop chemistry with several new faces injected into the mix, power forward, Julius Randle noted one specific detail that plays a big part in success.

After the Knicks got a bit too egotistical with their early-season triumph, reality hit them in the face like a ton of bricks. Dropping games to the Magic, Pacers, and Raptors, all teams they could’ve beaten with ease, they realize that their opponent simply wanted it more.

The Eastern Conference is stacked with great teams, and the players have acknowledged the quality of the members on the opposite bench every game, but that is no excuse for lacking hustle and effort.

Randle stated, Via the New York Post, that coming out with energy is a catalyst in winning games, whether it be during the regular or postseason.

“The biggest thing is coming out with energy,” Randle said on Wednesday night. “We’ve been good on the road so far this year. We just got to come out with energy, come out with fight, an edge. Play Knicks basketball.

The Knicks dropped their first road game of the season against the Pacers on Wednesday night, but they’ve been mostly sufficient away. Surprisingly, they’ve lost more games in front of their home fans, maybe due to elevated expectations or early-season jitters.

Despite Randle stating that the team displays effort, separating them from the rest of the pack, head coach Tom Thibodeau and RJ Barrett have indicated that teams have simply outpaced them and shown more hustle.

“That’s who we are. Usually that gives us a pretty good shot every night, whether home or on the road,” Randle said.

There is no question that the team will continue to build upon their wins and develop an identity, but their lackluster defense so far has been a talking point.

Thibodeau relies on elite defense to give his team more opportunities to stay in the game and pull away with the offensive prowess. The Knicks still rank 2nd in the league in three-point percentage, but if they can’t stop their opponents from scoring, they will be playing catchup instead of leading.

Junior Dos Santos signs with boxing agency; Eyes becoming world champion

Junior Dos Santos (21-9 MMA) is ready to take on the boxing world. The former UFC heavyweight champion has always been a fighter that was known for his hands and his striking. Now, he’s ready to focus on that full time.

After a brief stint in professional wrestling following his UFC release last year, Dos Santos is ready to get back to combat sports. However, he’s not going back to the sport that made him a world champion. Instead, he’s going to the boxing ring.

SJam Boxing announced yesterday that Dos Santos had signed with their agency and that he’s fully dedicated to the sport. He’s not just in this for the money and he’s not looking to fight YouTube or internet celebrities whenever he does get in the ring.

Instead, Dos Santos has already said that he’s focusing on the best guys that the sport has to offer. The former UFC heavyweight champion wants to become the first man to crossover and become the boxing heavyweight champion of the world.

Can Dos Santos become a boxing champion?

In a video package released by SJam, Dos Santos said, “Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury. I really believe it’s going to happen. One day I will fight against these guys, and I will beat them up.”

As you can tell, Dos Santos is not here to play around and the former UFC champion wants the tough fights. Realistically, Dos Santos is going to need a few wins before the boxing world will even consider booking him against some of the elites in the sport.

Dos Santos rose to the top of the UFC on the strength of his boxing. However, his defense is something that was relatively alarming over the past few years as he didn’t go a great job of defending himself while carrying his hands very low.

Against top level guys in this sport, he really has to sure up some of the flaws in his game. The age can also be an issue, but you have to respect Dos Santos for aiming big and going right for the top in the sport of boxing.

Knicks’ RJ Barrett shows something special in close win over Chicago

new york knicks, rj barrett

Up 13 points with three minutes left in the fourth quarter, the New York Knicks failed to score a single point down the stretch, allowing the Chicago Bulls to put themselves in the conversation. Coming down to the wire, Julius Randle missed two free throws, allowing Chicago to win the game down just one point.

However, veteran DeMar DeRozan didn’t anticipate having third-year guard RJ Barrett directly in his face attempting to take a shot for the win. DeRozan gave Barrett a fake shot look, but RJ stayed on his feet and waited for the second attempt, inching a little bit closer to his ultimate goal of being an All-Defensive player.

“Honestly, the biggest part I’ve been trying to work on is my defense. I want to be first-team all defense, I want to be (a top defender), I want to be that guy for this team. So just looking at (my defense).”

Barrett didn’t only provide stellar defense in the Knicks’ fourth victory of the season, he also contributed fantastic offenses, scoring 20 points, shooting 53% from the field. He did most of his damage in the paint, disrupting the interior and attacking Chicago’s defenders. Rather than acting as a spot shooter in the corner, hunting for three-pointers, he got more aggressive and pursued the rim instead, drawing several foul opportunities.

RJ displayed something special in this victory, a combination of quality defense and offense, which was expected going into his third season. If the Canadian-born player can develop and reach his potential, the Knicks will be sitting on a gold mine of talent.

The shooting guard was asked this week about his slow start, indicating that he’s the type of guy that never quits, and he will begin to show his progression at some point.

“I don’t know why, third year in a row I started like this. But I’m a guy that I never give up, I never quit. God’s blessed me with that ability.”

Clearly, Barrett has put his early seasons struggles behind him, displaying his talents against a red-hot Bulls team.

Doc Rivers, Joel Embiid rave about ‘physical’ Knicks team

mitchell robinson, knicks

The New York Knicks weren’t only impressive in the victory over the Philadelphia 76ers to their fans but also the opposition. After a disappointing loss to the Orlando Magic, New York bounced back with a superb defensive performance in the first half and matched any offensive firepower Philadelphia sent their way.

However, the most significant differentiating factor was their physicality and aggressiveness. Big man Joel Embiid raved about the Knicks’ physicality, looking somber in his post-game interview regarding his performance.

“[Knicks] were more physical than us. They got whatever they wanted.”

Even head coach Doc Rivers sang a similar song, as the Knicks posted five more rebounds and one more block than Philly. The muscular version of Mitchell Robinson has played a significant factor in the team’s success to start the year, averaging 10.5 rebounds per game.

“It was the Knicks. It was just physicality,” Doc said.

It wasn’t only their physicality, though, as the Knicks displayed a variety of offensive playmakers, ranging from Evan Fournier to Kemba Walker.

“Clearly they’re a better offensive team because they have more shot makers. They have more playmakers,” Rivers said. “That’s one thing about Kemba and Fournier. They’re not just scorers. They’re playmakers and the more playmakers you can add to a team, the better. We didn’t have any playmakers tonight.”

Walker had a stellar performance, showcasing his All-Star level attributes. Over 28 minutes, Walker contributed 19 points, shooting 5-of-11 from three-point range (hit four consecutive at one point in the 4th quarter) and picking up five assists.

When Kemba is knocking down shots, the Knicks have one of the more dangerous teams in basketball. His ability to stifle any Philadelphia momentum was a catalyst in the win, and he will be looking to do something similar against the Chicago Bulls on Thursday evening.

3 keys for the Knicks as they prepare to take on the undefeated Bulls

The New York Knicks are coming off a stellar victory over the Philadelphia 76ers, but they have another formidable opponent on Thursday evening, the Chicago Bulls.

The Bulls have won all four of their games to start the season, but their schedule has lacked strength, taking on the Detroit Pistons twice and New Orleans Pelicans once. Their most recent win over the Toronto Raptors was impressive, despite just barely squeaking it out by three points.

Aside from their record, the Bulls have their fair share of weaknesses, notably on their bench, which lacks profound depth. For example, only one of their depth pieces averages more than six points per game, Alex Caruso. However, their starting five is talented, featuring Zach LaVine, Lonzo Ball, DeMar DeRozan, and Nikola Vucevic.

Slowing down those four alone will be a challenge for New York, but if they can accomplish a few significant determinants, they have a solid chance at winning their fourth game of the season.

Three keys for the Knicks as they prepare to take on the Bulls:

1.) Get into Chicago’s bench

Similar to how the Knicks approached Philadelphia, getting into Chicago’s bench is how they will win this game. The Knicks’ second team and unique player combinations work wonders against opponents with lackluster benches.

As stated above, they have minimal talent on the backend, so playing up-tempo and fast-paced basketball will do them well, forcing Chicago to take out some of the key starters and rotate in reserves.

Even Philadelphia’s head coach Doc Rivers raved about the team’s depth and physicality.

2.) Guard the perimeter aggressively

The Bulls have several quality three-point shooters, ranging from LaVine, who is hitting 44% of his shots from range this season, to Lonzo Ball, who’s shooting 43%.

Suppose the Knicks can eliminate their quality shooting from beyond the arc, putting more pressure on DeMar DeRozan to beat them on the interior. In that case, they can take advantage of Mitchell Robinson‘s physical and aggressive presence. Robinson is coming off a solid defensive game against Joel Embiid, but DeRozan offers a bit more as a shooter from mid-range.

Chicago doesn’t necessarily rely on any specific offensive quality, mixing in a healthy balance of three-point shooting and mid-range opportunities. Guarding the perimeter aggressively will give the Knicks a significant advantage, especially if their shots are dropping from deep.

3.) Communication and switching

Defensively, the Knicks were fantastic in the first half against Philadelphia, holding them to just 42 points. It wasn’t until the second half where they gave up a bit of legroom but still matched them offensively with ease.

The Knicks are still gaining their footing on defense this season, but when they are communicating and switching correctly, there is no question they are one of the best defensive teams in the league. Against Orlando, they found themselves failing to pick up players driving to the rim, so being proactive and focused is a key factor in game five.

Knicks News: Nerlens Noel preparing for return, Doc raves about coach Thibs

The New York Knicks are coming off an impressive victory against the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday evening, holding their opponent to less than 100 points for the first time in their season. The Knicks, on the other hand, scored 112, showcasing some of their offensive capabilities.

Point guard Kemba Walker proved to be the difference in the contest, as he displayed All-Star caliber play for the first time this season after an inconsistent start over the first three games. Walker can be the catalyst in their success against more prominent teams, but they still aren’t entirely healthy as a veteran center Nerlens Noel has yet to appear this season.

The Knicks have held Noel out of their first four games of the regular campaign, let alone the entire preseason as well. Noel signed a three-year, $27.7 million deal this past off-season with New York but has dealt with knee soreness the past few months.

Head coach Tom Thibodeau indicated that Noel is close to returning, having ramped up pretty well up to this point.

“He’s ramped up pretty good right now,’’ Thibodeau said before the game. “Hopefully it will be soon. It’s when he’s ready to go. So he’s been taking some contact. He’s real close.’’

In the meantime, Mitchell Robinson has done a phenomenal job as the starter, contributing 8.5 points, 10.5 rebounds, and logging 1.3 blocks per game. The season is young, and with Mitch still increasing his stamina, the duo of him and Noel will hopefully be prolific.

“He was almost back once and then he had some soreness,’’ Thibodeau said. “He had soreness in his knee [but] the hamstring is fine. And that soreness is much improved.”

The Knicks still managed to extract a victory against the 76ers without Nerlens, indicating their depth and efficiency on both sides of the ball. Philadelphia head coach Doc Rivers raved about Thibodeau and his coaching style before the game, which proved to be true in the victory.

“I thought he was terrific,’’ Rivers said before Tuesday’s game Vs the Knicks, per the NY Post. “I personally think him and Monty were my choices. I wished they should’ve split because I thought it should’ve been split last year. But Thibs is a helluva coach. Worked with me for three years, felt like nine, But he’s just good. He works his butt off. He’s in love with the game of basketball. If every player had that same passion they’d be better players. Same for coaching.’’

There is no question that Thibs is in love with the game of basketball, given his intensity when the Knicks are up 25 with one minute left in the fourth quarter. He demands greatness from his team at all times, making it a priority for them to play at 100% despite the score.

Thibodeau excretes passion and confidence, which rubs off on his players and elevates their level of play. That has played a significant part in the Knicks’ success since he took over as head coach last season.

Do the Giants have a shot at taking down the Kansas City Chiefs in Prime Time?

new york giants

To everybody’s surprise, the Kansas City Chiefs currently sit 3–4 on the season and rank 3rd in the AFC West. Having lost two of their last three games, including defeats to the Tennessee Titans and Buffalo Bills, there is a small chance the New York Giants can squeak out a victory in Week 8.

The Giants are coming off a surprising victory over the Carolina Panthers this past weekend, despite having the majority of their offensive weapons out due to injury and offensive line thinned to a minimum once again.

The Giants allowed just three points, showcasing the defense anticipated when the season began. However, big Blue still only ranks 23rd in points allowed per game, giving up 125.6 rushing yards and 243 passing yards. The Giants have found themselves in the top 15 in passing yards allowed post-Carolina win, where Sam Darnold and PJ Walker combined for 117 yards gained through the air.

The Giants are far from being a quality team, but they might be catching Kansas City at the right moment after being embarrassed by Tennessee last weekend. Kansas City scored just three points, courtesy of a Harrison Butker field goal in the third quarter. The Titans scored 27 — the Chiefs’ defense ranks even worse than the Giants, giving up 29 points per game, 129 rushing yards, and 275 passing yards.

So the question is, can the Giants find a way to extract a third victory of the season against Kansas City?

Ultimately, it will boil down to the offense and how well the line performs, protecting Daniel Jones. Last week, coordinator Jason Garrett did a solid job finding ways to buy Jones time in the pocket, focusing on a short passing game while taking a few shots downfield to keep Carolina’s defense honest.

If the team can return both Kadarius Tony and Kenny Golladay, Jones will have more targets to work with in the passing game and therefore have an increased probability of scoring more points. Given Carolina is a top 10 defense in points allowed per game and Kansas City falls in the bottom six, the Giants should have a good opportunity to put together some successful drives and at least push the Chiefs to the end.

If Toney is able to play, expect him to be a catalyst in this game, using his unique agility to force missed tackles and churn out yards. It was clear the Giants missed Toney last weekend, as he utilized play designs meant for the rookie, but instead got the ball to players like Evan Engram and Darius Slayton, which didn’t provide the same result.

Knicks see the fruits of Kemba Walker as he rains down fire on 76ers

After losing a disappointing game to the Orlando Magic, the New York Knicks bounced back impressively against the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday evening. Philadelphia entered the game winning two of their first three games, scoring over 108 points in each contest.

However, the Knicks’ defense held Philadelphia to just 99 points, limiting center Joel Embiid to 14 points over 30 minutes. Considering the quality that Embiid brings to the floor, it was impressive to see how the Knicks defended him, predominantly the added muscle of Mitchell Robinson, who recorded seven points and recorded six rebounds in the contest.

The Knicks move the ball far more efficiently, playing the hot hand rather than forcing Julius Randle to pick up the load in isolation, which he tried to do against Orlando, proving to be a poor strategy. The Knicks ultimately rode point guard Kemba Walker to victory, piggybacking on his 19 points and 5-of-11 shooting from three-point range. He also contributed five assists and two steals.

Walker was one of the more exciting off-season signings, replacing Elfrid Payton with superior offensive capabilities, which he displayed on Tuesday evening. Just when the 76ers tried to regain momentum, Walker would rain fire down upon them from range, utilizing his quick movements to create space and opportunities.

Entering the game, Walker was averaging just 10.3 points per game, doubling that in the victory. He shot 45.5% from three-point range and 46.7% from the field, currently hovering above 50%, shooting from deep on the season.

The combination of Kemba and Derrick Rose has proven to be a significant factor early on in the year, as the second team veteran contributed 13 points over 20 minutes.

With such a deep team, there doesn’t seem to be a massive drop-off in talent at most positions, which is exactly how the Knicks planned to structure their roster. Walker’s influence will be huge against more prominent teams like Philadelphia, and the Knicks displayed some of their dominance in the bounce-back victory.