New York Giants (4-7, 6-5 ATS) at Miami Dolphins (5-7, 6-5-1), 1 p.m.
Brolley’s Giants Stats and Trends
The Giants are 4-1 ATS in their last five games.
New York is 7-3 toward unders in its last 10 games.
Saquon Barkley saw his snap share rise from 62% to 87% in his second game back from his ankle injury, but he managed just 13/40 rushing (3.1 YPC) and 4/13 receiving (3.3 YPR) with the Giants offense continuing to struggle. He’s averaging just 4.5 yards per touch this season after averaging 5.6 yards per touch in his first two seasons in 2018-19. The Dolphins are giving up 119.7 scrimmage yards per game and 4.8 yards per touch to RBs this season.
Daniel Jones has posted fewer than 18 FP and 245 passing yards in seven straight games. He threw for 245+ yards in each of his first four games and he’s thrown for 2+ TDs just twice in 11 games. He’s also dealing with a neck injury coming out of Week 12, which has him in jeopardy of missing this week’s game. Mike Glennon previously filled in for Jones when he left early with a concussion in Week 5 against the Cowboys, and he completed 16/25 passes for 196 yards, two TDs, and one INT in the blowout loss. The Dolphins have held four straight QBs to under 20+ FP and six of the last seven.
Jones’ rough play has totally quashed the fantasy potential for New York’s WR corps, and it doesn’t help that his two best options, Kadarius Toney (quad) and Sterling Shepard (quad), can’t stay healthy. Kenny Golladay has yet to score a touchdown as a Giant and he hasn’t reached double-digit FP since Week 4. Toney has posted double-digit FP once since Week 5 while Shepard has hit double-digit FP just once since Week 2. The Dolphins are giving up the third-most FPG (40.8) to WRs this season.
Evan Engram flopped in a great matchup against the Eagles last week with just 3/37 receiving on six targets. He’s now fallen below 40 receiving yards in four straight games and in 7-of-9 contests this season. Miami is giving up the 15th-most FPG (12.6) to TEs this season.
Brolley’s Dolphins Stats and Trends
The Dolphins are one of the hotter teams in the leagues with four straight outright and ATS victories, and they own a +13.0 cover margin over the last four games.
Miami’s defense hasn’t allowed its last four opponents to score more than 17 points and it’s given up just 11.5 points per game in that stretch.
The Dolphins are 4-1 toward unders in their last five games.
Tua Tagovailoa is quietly playing the best football of his career over the last 10 quarters, completing 80.5% of his passes and averaging 8.6 YPA against the Ravens, Jets, and Panthers. He’s attempted just 64 passes over the last two weeks in victories, and the Dolphins are entering as three-point home favorites in a game sporting the lowest total of the week at 41.5 points. Tom Brady is the only QB to reach 20+ FP against the Giants in their last five games.
Jaylen Waddle has been surging ever since Tua initially returned to the lineup from his rib injury in Week 6. He’s hung 15+ FP in five of his last seven games and he’s hit double-digit FP six times in that span after posting a season-high 28.7 FP against a stout Panthers’ secondary. He finished with 9/137/1 receiving on 10 targets (32% share), which was his first 100-yard game of his career. He’s now seen 8+ targets in six of his last seven games with 7+ catches in five of those contests. Chris Godwin (6/65/1 receiving) and Hunter Renfrow (7/49/1) have had success out of the slot in recent games against the Giants.
Mike Gesicki ran the most routes (30) for the Dolphins last week, but he’s hit a wall over the last five weeks, failing to score more than 10 FP in that span. He’s scored just twice this season despite seeing the fifth-most red-zone targets (16) at the position, and he’s seen a disappointing two end-zone targets so far. The Giants wiped out Dallas Goedert (1/0 receiving) last week, but Rob Gronkowski (6/71) and Darren Waller (7/92) had success in the two previous games against New York.
Myles Gaskin scored a season-best 19.2 FP against the Panthers in Week 12, and he’s seen 15+ touches in six straight games. There are signs the bottom could fall out on him in the final six weeks though. The Texans released Phillip Lindsay before Week 12 and he landed on his feet with the Dolphins claiming him and getting him into the lineup immediately. Gaskin paced the backfield 18/52/2 scrimmage, but he saw a six-week low 50% snap share with the Dolphins using four different RBs. Lindsay played just 15 snaps (20%) in the four-man backfield, but he saw a healthy 12 carries for 42 yards against the Panthers, with much of his work coming as the team’s closer in a lopsided victory. The Giants are giving up a generous 159.5 scrimmage yards per game to RBs this season.
Barfield’s Pace and Tendencies
Pace (seconds in between plays): 28 (18th)
Plays per game: 60.9 (24th)
Pass: 63.3% (11th) | Run: 36.7% (22nd)
Pace: 27.5 (16th)
Plays per game: 65.8 (6th)
Pass: 63.5% (10th) | Run: 36.5% (23rd)
All pace / play data is from the last eight weeks.
The Giants led throughout in an ugly game against the Eagles last week which allowed them to run the ball a ton in new play-caller Freddie Kitchens’ first game. The Giants went 58% run-heavy on early-downs last week while “playing not to lose” – which is 100% a continuation of the Jason Garrett Method™. Kitchens did use Daniel Jones a bit more as a runner which has long been one of the lone effective bits about this offense, but beyond that, nothing about the Giants tendencies or game-plan last week inspired confidence that this offense is going to turn around late in the year.
Meanwhile, the Dolphins have remained very pass-heavy while Tua Tagovailoa is taking off for the quietest second-year ascension ever. Tua’s play as of late is even more impressive when you grade him on the curve that is the current state of this Dolphins offense. Miami still can’t run the ball and they are just turning to Tua to carry the offense. Over the last eight weeks, the Dolphins are the fourth-most pass-heavy offense when the game is within a score in the 1st-3rd quarter at 67.3%. Well, that tendency lines up perfectly with how opponents are attacking the Giants (63.6% pass in close games; seventh-highest rate), so there should be plenty of more passing volume again for Miami. Since returning from injury in Week 6, Tua is averaging 38 passes per game.
Huber’s Key Matchup Notes
As strange as it may sound, the most daunting challenge will fall upon Saquon Barkley. The last RB to post at least 7.0 FPs against the Dolphins’ defense purely in the run game came all of the way in Week 8 when Cordarrelle Patterson put 12.0 on them. Looking on the bright side, at least they won’t be facing the prospect with Devontae Booker as their featured back.
Jaylen Waddle has exceeded the Dolphins’ expectations three times over. Managing to carry this poor excuse for a WR room during Miami’s four-game winning streak, and while DeVante Parker rehabbed his hamstring is simply Oscar-worthy. I can’t be persuaded otherwise.
I am looking forward to watching how ‘21 third-rounder Aaron Robinson and his 4.39-speed fares across from Waddle. During the pre-draft process, I passed along my belief that Waddle would’ve submitted athletic testing in competition with the numbers created by Ja’Marr Chase and Kadarius Toney. For those unaware, Waddle is only one 20-plus FP performance from matching Chase at four.
Dolan’s Vantage Points
The Giants aren’t going to have QB Daniel Jones this week, as he deals with a neck strain suffered against the Eagles in Week 12. That means it’ll be Mike Glennon starting at QB. And it’s possible this injury extends further.
The latest on the neck injury to Giants QB Daniel Jones, which isn’t considered season-ending (yet) but could keep him out “weeks”.
— Ralph Vacchiano (@RVacchianoSNY) December 3, 2021
And it’s possible the only thing that really changes for the Giants’ offense is they now have a less-mobile QB at the them. WRs Sterling Shepard (quad) and Kadarius Toney (quad) are unlikely to play. And the one thing I will guarantee is the Dolphins will blitz the hell out of Glennon. Miami blitzes at a 38.4% clip, second-highest in the NFL (behind Tampa). It could be ugly for the Giants if Glennon is just sitting there in the pocket without open receivers to throw to.
On top of Daniel Jones being out Sunday …— Jordan Raanan (@JordanRaanan) December 3, 2021
It doesn’t look promising for WR Sterling Shepard (quad). WR Kadarius Toney (quad/oblique) will be out.
Also starting RT Nate Solder was not at practice.
It’d be nice to see Saquon Barkley — who played 87% of the snaps last week but didn’t produce like it — get some checkdowns against this blitz-heavy group. The Dolphins have given up plenty of production to RBs at least, but Barkley isn’t producing enough to really be considered an RB1. Given the injuries elsewhere at the position, though, you might not have a choice but to play him as one.
Anyway, here’s Scott Barrett writing the epitaph of Evan Engram from Start/Sit:
“Engram had a perfect matchup last week, against an Eagles defense that was giving up a league-high +6.2 schedule-adjusted FPG to opposing TEs. And the Giants had literally no one else to throw the ball to, with TE Kyle Rudolph, TE Kaden Smith, WR Kadarius Toney, and WR Sterling Shepard all out. And so, what happened next? He was out-scored by TE Chris Myarick. Who? Exactly.
Engram is beyond dust at this point. And should be viewed as just a low-end TE2 moving forward.”
While this game doesn’t project to score many points, our Jake Tribbey does view it as a spot in which Tua Tagovailoa could provide a solid floor if you need a QB option with a few useful ones on bye this week. From Streamers:
“In his full games this year, Tua has earned 18.3 FPG — good enough for QB12 over the full season. Crucially, Tua has been quite consistent in his healthy starts, never having a game worse than 12.3 fantasy points. That may be due, at least partially, to a lack of downfield aggression, as Tua’s aDOT of 6.8 ranks as the 2nd-lowest among starting QBs, ahead of only Jared Goff. Tua’s Week 13 matchup with New York is a rough one from a scoring perspective, as this game’s 41.5 total is the lowest of the week. Still, the Giants are giving up 19.2 FPG to opposing QBs (11th-worst) and Tua has averaged 16.9 FPG in games with a total lower than 43.5 in his career, which would still be good enough for QB14 this season. I’m viewing Tagovailoa as a mid- to high-end QB2 this week, albeit one with a relatively narrow range of outcomes in a weaker scoring environment.”
Tua has benefitted from the emergence of rookie WR Jaylen Waddle, who has proven to be yet another stud in what’s looking like a damn good class. Since Week 6, Waddle has seen 8 or more targets in six of seven games and is averaging 18.1 FPG (seventh-best among WRs). Tua could get more help this week, with DeVante Parker having a chance to play.
Tua, on DeVante Parker's return to practice today: "To me it didn’t look like he was limited in any of the reps."— Hal Habib (@gunnerhal) December 1, 2021
Meanwhile, it’s looking less and less likely that Will Fuller will be able to return this year with his significant finger injury.
Brian Flores said DeVante Parker returns to practice this week after missing last 4 games w/ hamstring injury. Will Fuller won’t — 10th straight missed game. Flores said Fuller had significant finger injury w/ multiple fractures. Word I heard a while back was almost “shattered.”— Cameron Wolfe (@CameronWolfe) December 1, 2021
In the backfield, new addition Phillip Lindsay is doubtful with an ankle injury, opening the door for a bell cow Myles Gaskin game.