Giants 2021 win total preview: Can New York snap 4-year under skid?

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We've covered the Cowboys and Eagles, two NFC East teams I believe will fall short of their 2021 win totals.

Now we move on to the Giants, one of the league's most stagnant franchises. Can they improve? Or will New York register yet another double-digit losing season?

Here's our breakdown and pick for the G-Men.

Giants 2021 win total

Over: 7 (-140)
Under: 7 (+110)

A look back

New York missed the playoffs while playing in the NFL's worst division last year, finishing 6-10 and a half win shy of the team's 6.5 total.

The Giants have gone over their regular-season win total as many times as they've won the Super Bowl over the last decade: Once. And that didn't even happen during their 2011 title-winning campaign.

Win total history

Year Win total Final record Over/under
2011 9 9-7 Push
2012 9 9-7 Push
2013 9 7-9 Under
2014 7 6-10 Under
2015 8 6-10 Under
2016 8.5 11-5 Over
2017 8.5 3-13 Under
2018 7 5-11 Under
2019 6 4-12 Under
2020 6.5 6-10 Under

The Giants' Achilles heel last year was an offense that ranked No. 31 in points per game, No. 29 in yards per play, and No. 27 in DVOA.

Granted, running back Saquon Barkley missed nearly the entire season, and the team generally struggled to stay healthy, as the Giants were No. 8 in man-games lost due to injury. But the club's glaring roster holes made it impossible to strictly blame injuries.

Second-year quarterback Daniel Jones posted just 11 touchdown passes and 210.2 passing yards per game after registering 24 and 232.8 in 2019, respectively.

His offensive line also gave up the league's second-most sacks per game. As a result, the unit was the second-worst in the NFL, according to PFF, which grades New York's O-line as the third-worst group entering the fall.

Luckily, the Giants' defense bailed the squad out in 2020 while ranking No. 8 in yards per play and No. 9 in points allowed per game.

Breakdown

It was apparent Jones needed help, so the Giants' front office secured more weapons this past offseason.

The club opened the checkbook during free agency for wide receiver Kenny Golladay, who posted back-to-back campaigns with 1,000-plus receiving yards in 2018-19. The team also drafted first-round playmaker Kadarius Toney after he forced the sixth-most missed tackles following a reception in the country last year at Florida.

If Barkley is back sooner than later and wide receiver Sterling Shepard - who played some of his best football down the stretch in 2020 - can build off his momentum, there's no chance the Giants perform as poorly as they did in 2020, despite the offensive line concerns.

Meanwhile on defense, cornerback Adoree' Jackson was added, and tackle Leonard Williams (career-high 11.5 sacks during his first season in New York in 2020) was signed to an extension.

Best bet - Over 7 (-140)

History says the over is a bad bet, but I like it here.

The Giants fielded one of the NFL's worst offenses in 2020, yet they still came up just shy of their win total. Estimated Wins was bullish, projecting the G-Men for 6.5 victories.

If the Giants can stay healthy after being the second-most injured team over the last decade, this one's a gimme. Jones actually was given a better PFF grade in 2020 than the year prior, and the skill-player group around him can't be worse than last fall.

Eight wins is certainly attainable for New York, which will end its four-year skid of double-digit losses.

Alex Kolodziej is a betting writer for theScore. Find him on Twitter @AjKolodziej.

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Giants 2021 win total preview: Can New York snap 4-year under skid?
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