The Giants are still pretenders

Despite recent winning streak, significant problems remain

Updated: November 19, 2013, 11:30 AM ET
By Rivers McCown | Football Outsiders

Josh FreemanJim O'Connor/USA TODAY SportsA resurgent pass rush has helped lead the Giants to a four-game winning streak.

By claiming their fourth straight win on Sunday, the New York Giants elevated themselves back into the NFC East conversation by virtue of Dallas and Philadelphia being just as inconsistent as New York this year. Unfortunately, whether you look at it with your eyes or the statistics, the Giants seem much more likely to stay in the conversation than they are to take the next step toward actual contention.

New York enters Week 12 as the 27th-ranked team by DVOA, carrying a mark of minus-15.1 percent. (DVOA is Football Outsiders' defense-adjusted value over average metric, explained here.) The Eagles and Cowboys are 10th and 11th, respectively, with DVOAs of 9.6 percent and 7.1 percent. That disparity is enough for us to peg the Giants with just a 3.3 percent chance at the playoffs despite being just a game-and-a-half behind Philadelphia for the division lead.

Rivers McCown

Football Outsiders
Rivers McCown is an associate editor for Football Outsiders.