You know things are bad when New York football fans are more excited about the Jets than the Giants.
The G-Men won six games in a down year for the division last season, the jury is still out on Daniel Jones being the franchise QB, and Saquon Barkley has all the durability of a pair of Dollar Store flip-flops.
Thanks to an under-the-radar defense, New York was a betting bright spot at 9-5 ATS when getting the points. Can the offense do enough to keep those underdog cash-outs coming?
Check out our 2021 New York Giants NFL betting preview.
New York Giants futures odds
|To Win Conference||+50,000|
|To Win Division||+450|
|Season Win Total O/U||7.5 (Under -120)|
|To Make Playoffs||Yes +220 / No -260|
Best futures bet: Under 7.5 wins (-120)
Let’s say the Giants split their NFC East games, giving them three wins. They have four winnable home games against non-divisional foes (Denver, Atlanta, Carolina and Las Vegas) which, if split, would be five total wins. That means New York would need to squeeze three victories out of the remaining contests.
Those leftover games feature a trip to New Orleans, a homestand versus the Rams, visits to last year’s Super Bowl teams (Chiefs and Bucs), roadies at Miami and L.A. Chargers (Weeks 13 and 14), and at Chicago… in January. The Giants are 3-7 SU on the road versus non-divisional opponents the past two seasons and if they don’t split those NFC East run-ins, at the very least, eight wins is a pipe dream.
New York Giants betting overview
What will win bets: Defense
The Giants’ defense was sneaky good in 2020. New York allowed just 22.3 points per game and while the stop unit didn’t get the same shot in the arm of talent as the offense, this group will improve in Year 2 under coordinator Patrick Graham.
The G-Men didn’t give up many home run plays, allowing only 43 passes of 20 yards or more, and ranked ninth in rushing yards allowed per carry (4.1). For one of the lighter blitzing teams in the league, New York still collected 40 sacks and a solid secondary forces passers to hang around in the pocket a little longer than they should.
What will lose bets: Quarterback
“Danny Dimes” is on a short leash in Year 3 for Big Blue. With the addition of 6-foot-4 WR Kenny Golladay, reliable TEs in Evan Engram and Kyle Rudolph, and a healthy-ish Saquon Barkley as the ultimate checkdown, there’s no excuse for Jones to have as many mistakes as he’s had the first two years (22 INTs, completion percentage of 62, 29 fumbles).
The offensive line allowed 50 sacks in 2020 (second-most in the NFL) and lugged a pass block win rate of 31 percent – dead last. The bulk of those bodies return for 2021 – minus Kevin Zeitler but add Joe Looney – which doesn’t bode well for Jones’ well-being. But don’t sweat Big Apple bettors, behind him is backup QB… Mike Glennon? Oh boy.
New York Giants game-by-game odds
The 2021 lookahead lines have the Giants set as favorites in five games this upcoming season, with five other games boasting spreads between +1 and +3. They own the 25th toughest slate (.474) in terms of strength of schedule.
New York is getting more than a field goal in seven of its dozen games as an underdog. Six of those games come away from MetLife Stadium and in two years since Daniel Jones was drafted, the G-Men are 9-3 ATS when catching 3.5 points or more on the road, including a 5-1 ATS mark last season.
|4||@ New Orleans||+5.5||47.5|
|6||vs L.A. Rams||+3.5||45.5|
|8||@ Kansas City||+10||49|
|9||vs Las Vegas||-1.5||47.5|
|11||@ Tampa Bay||+10||50.5|
|14||@ L.A. Chargers||+6||47|
Early season forecast
The Giants' offense gets a real workout in the first two games of 2021, hosting Denver and visiting Washington. Given how nasty those pass rushes will be, can Jones survive to see the Falcons in Week 3? The G-Men have won just one game in the opening three weeks of football over the past two seasons (2-4 ATS).
New York kicks off the season against an AFC West foe but couldn’t even catch a break from the schedule-makers, who slotted this non-conference clash as a 4:25 p.m. ET start. This spread opened pick’em but early play against New York has bumped this line to Giants +1. New York has had big trouble in non-conference games (see trends below) and as an extra kick in the crotch, the NYG have won just two Week 1 contests since 2010 (2-9 SU/3-8 ATS).
The Giants catch a field goal in the nation’s capital in Week 2. New York has dominated Washington for a while now, including beating up on the WFT on their own turf with a 14-7 SU record and 13-8 ATS count in D.C. over the past 21 seasons.
The Falcons wander into the Meadowlands as 2.5-point dogs in Week 3. This game has a total of 48.5 points – one of only four Giants games in 2021 with a number of 48 or higher. Since Jones took over at QB in 2019, New York is an even 4-4 Over/Under in those games with totals of 48 or more but an intriguing 6-2 ATS when pegged with a higher O/U.
Week 6: vs L.A. Rams (+3.5)
At first glance, you may be wondering “what gives?” when it comes to this relatively short spread with the mighty Rams visiting the Giants in Week 6. However, this is a gruesome situational spot for Los Angeles. Let us count the ways…
Not only does L.A. have to cross the country for a 1 p.m. ET start (10 a.m. PT) but it’s playing its second straight road game (schedule spot!) off a TNF rivalry in Seattle (letdown spot!) and has an emotionally charged matchup with Matt Stafford’s former club Detroit (and former QB Jared Goff) in Week 7 (lookahead spot!).
This spread will likely grow before Week 6 rolls around, so if you’re buying Big Blue here, wait for more points. But the bookies are definitely tipping their pitch with this 3.5-point lookahead line.
New York completed the 2020 calendar with a 3-13 Over/Under record – the top Under bet in all the land. An underrated defense and injury-thinned offense get all the credit for those low-scoring results.
As mentioned above, oddsmakers aren’t expecting many fireworks from the Giants’ 2021 outings and have only four contests lugging totals of 48 points or higher. There are four sub-44 numbers on the board as well.
On paper, this offense is improved. But knowing Jones’ limitations, the turnstile O-line, and Jason Garrett’s play-calling, the G-Men may keep it short and sweet. The 2020 attack produced just 36 passing plays of 20-plus yards (second-fewest) and 3,189 intended air yards from Jones (23rd). Better put the coffee on to stay awake during Giants games. Zzzzzzz…
Star power props: Saquon Barkley, RB
|Player prop||Odds to win|
|Comeback Player of the Year||+700|
|Rushing yards leader||+1,600|
|Rushing yards total||1,175.5 (Over -112)|
Best prop: Under 1,175.5 rushing yards (-112)
This prop is dependent on two things: Barkley being healthy enough to start the season and remaining healthy during the 2021 campaign. One of those things is a toss-up with Barkley’s rehab from a torn ACL progressing slowly and the other doesn’t seem probable given the running back’s injury issues the past two seasons.
Other factors working against the Over for this prop are just how good Barkley is as a pass catcher and how poor the offensive line will be. Add to that the fact New York will be playing from behind a lot, and there’s not much room for the rush. Barkley had 1,307 yards on the ground in 16 games as a rookie and 1,003 yards in 13 games in Year 2. This current total seems like a stretch.
Trend to know
New York is a wretched 2-6 SU and 1-7 ATS versus AFC opponents the past two seasons. Thanks to the new 17-game schedule, the Giants get an additional non-conference fight at Miami in Week 13 on top of a four-game set versus the AFC West.
Giants’ non-conference games
- Week 1: vs Denver +1
- Week 8: @ Kansas City +10
- Week 9: vs Las Vegas -1.5
- Week 13: @ Miami +3.5
- Week 14: @ L.A. Chargers +6
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