Which New York Giants players must the Washington Commanders keep quiet to get one over on their divisional rivals in Week 7?
Beating the New York Giants begins and ends with stopping Saquon Barkley. The Washington Commanders know that better than most since they share the same division with the G-Men and their Pro Bowl running back.
Barkley isn't the only Giant who needs to be contained at MetLife Stadium in Week 7, with a dynamic tight end and dominant defensive tackle also on the list.
Let's get into the three primary threats Washington must keep quiet as they look to build on their victory at the Atlanta Falcons.
Commanders must commit to stopping Saquon Barkley
Corralling Saquon Barkley is never easy, but the Washington Commanders need everybody up front to commit to the cause in an NFC East clash they should win. That means filling all gaps with Burgundy helmets and forcing him to run sideways instead of vertically.
The Commanders have the personnel to do this, at least in theory. Any team that's invested so many first-round draft picks along the defensive line should expect to be able to stop the run. The problem is Washington's defense is surrendering 4.6 yards per carry on the ground.
That number's a bad omen ahead of facing one of the NFL's best backs. Especially when Barkley often gets stronger as a game progresses.
He did exactly this against the Buffalo Bills in Week 6. Barkley ripped off consecutive long runs in the fourth quarter. The second of those gains was highlighted by DAZN.
Stalling Barkley demands gap control, discipline, and technique. All of the things defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio's unit has been lacking too often this season.
The Commanders' defense has also found it hard to stop players at another position where the Giants have a potential game-winner.