The Buffalo Bills are coming off of an impressive comeback victory over the New York Jets in Week 1, and luckily for the Bills, they don’t even have to leave the building for their next road game, as they will battle the New York Giants in the very same MetLife Stadium this Sunday.
The Giants lost their first game of the season, as they were hammered by the Dallas Cowboys in Texas this past weekend.
Neither team is being looked at as a playoff contender, but Buffalo has a shot to get off to a rare 2-0 start here, while New York is already in desperation mode to try and get to 1-1.
So, here are four predictions for this Week 2 matchup.
4. It Will Be Low Scoring
Neither the Bills nor the Giants are exactly offensive juggernauts, so I expect this to be a low-scoring affair.
Buffalo is a pretty good defensive club, and while New York looked anything but that in Week 1, the Giants will be playing at home against a much-less talented offensive squad in this one, so they probably won’t be giving up 35 points again.
Josh Allen is still learning the ropes at quarterback for the Bills, and with Golden Tate still out due to a four-game suspension, the Giants are short on weapons.
It would not be the least bit surprising to see both teams score under 20 in this one.
3. Saquon Barkley Will Get More Touches
Saquon Barkley carried the ball just 11 times for 120 yards against the Cowboys.
The Bills have a very good pass defense, as they ranked first in the NFL in that category last season. But, they ranked 16th in run defense.
You do the math.
Chances are, New York will be giving the pigskin to Barkley quite a bit more this week, and while the Giants may certainly utilize him more as a receiver (he caught four passes in Week 1), it seems more likely that they will focus on pounding the football with him.
I’m not saying Barkley will get 25 carries, but he’ll surely run the ball more than the 11 times he did against Dallas.
2. Turnovers Will Decide the Game
Allen is prone to interceptions, as he threw 12 in 11 starts last year and threw a pair of them in his team’s Week 1 win over the Jets. As a matter of fact, the Bills turned the ball over four times against Gang Green and still managed to win.
That’s not very common.
Because Eli Manning is not the gunslinger he once was due to a dip in arm strength, the Giants are a bit more prudent about how they throw the football, so Buffalo seems more likely to have more turnovers in this one.
In a game that will probably be close, an extra turnover at one specific juncture could end up deciding the game, and that is what I think will end up happening.
1. The Giants Will Win a Close One
The Giants are desperate. They are at home. They are playing a much weaker opponent this week. Their defense also wants to prove that it is not actually made of Swiss cheese after being diced up by Dak Prescott.
All signs are pointing to a win for New York here. Not that the Giants are so much better than the Bills, because they might not be better at all, but I think the circumstances indicate that Big Blue will come away with a victory here.
Also, Buffalo’s win over the Jets last weekend was a bit fluky. I don’t think the Bills will be able to replicate that type of success this Sunday, particularly if they fall behind again.
Giants win this one.