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Taking the points with Saquon Barkley and the Giants pass rush

The Giants are a 6.5-point underdog in Week 8 against the Lions. We break why you should take the points.

Saquon Barkley of the New York Giants in action against the Arizona Cardinals at MetLife Stadium on October 20, 2019 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Photo by Mike Stobe/2019 Mike Stobe

The New York Giants travel to face the Detroit Lions in Week 8, and frankly, this is a tough one to sort out. The Lions got off to a 2-0-1 start, but have since lost three straight since seeing a bump in competition. The Giants won two straight after Daniel Jones took over as starting quarterback, but have since lost three straight to drop to 2-5.

The Giants are getting healthy, with Saquon Barkley and Evan Engram back in the lineup. On the other hand, the Lions face serious health issues. They placed running back Kerryon Johnson on injured reserve, and will likely be without Darius Slay and Damian Harrison in this one.

The Lions are currently 6.5-point favorites at DraftKings Sportsbook, with some sportsbooks willing to go up to a full touchdown. The full touchdown would be nice, but even at 6.5, the Giants are the play in this one.

The money is coming in on Detroit, but the Johnson and Harrison absences are notable. Barkley will get a chance to run wild on a defense that ranks 21st in rushing efficiency. Daniel Jones is dealing with plenty of rookie swings, but having Barkley should prove key in keeping this game close.

The other question of course is if the Giants can contain the Lions potent passing game. The Lions rank fourth in passing efficiency, and with Kerryon Johnson sidelined, look for them to rely even more on the passing game. As Big Blue View’s Ed Valentine noted, the Giants are going to have to bring the pass rush early and often. The Giants pass rush rank seventh in adusted sack rate. If they can get to Stafford, they can keep this game manageable.

There’s plenty of ifs in this one, but I’m going to take the points with the Giants.

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