By: Will Burchfield
One is obvious.
The other might not be.
Giants head coach Ben McAdoo praised two Lions who stood out on film in Week 1 during a conference call with local reporters on Thursday.
New York is preparing to host Detroit on Monday Night Football.
On offense, McAdoo was impressed by — who else? — Kenny Golladay. The rookie wide receiver opened eyes in his NFL debut with two fourth-quarter touchdowns, the second of spectacular variety.
“He’s a big, physical playmaker,” McAdoo said. “It definitely doesn’t seem too big for him. He’ll be a matchup challenge with his size and athleticism and speed.”
Golladay will be up against it versus the Giants. For one, he’s lost the element of surprise he may have enjoyed in Week 1. For another, New York has arguably the best secondary in the NFL, including three top-notch cornerbacks in Janoris Jenkins, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Eli Apple.
To provide a worthy encore, Golladay will have to raise his fame further.
“It should be fun,” he said on Monday. “We’re the only game on, so everybody will be watching. It’ll be exciting.”
On the other side of the ball, McAdoo took note of defensive end Anthony Zettel.
Versus the Cardinals, Zettel had a sack, another tackle for loss and an unexpected pass break-up against Larry Fitzgerald. He also had seven quarterback pressures, per Pro Football Focus, one more than he had all of last season.
“He stood out to us on tape,” McAdoo said. “He’s made a jump from last year to this year. Seems to be growing comfortable with the system and the techniques that are played and the stance and the get-off. He’s a very physical, combative player.”
Zettel, 25, looks like he’s on the verge of a breakout in his second season. He worked hard in the offseason to improve his lower-body strength and refined his technique by studying film of the likes of JJ Watt and Tamba Ali. It paid dividends during training camp, and Zettel hasn’t looked back since.
He has a ripe opportunity on Monday versus a porous Giants offensive line. Neither tackle — Bobby Hart on the right, Ereck Flowers on the left — provides much resistance.
“I play this game to earn the respect of the guy across from me.” Zettel said on Monday. “So I just want that guy on the Giants to know that he played me that game.”
Zettel picked up the lone sack of his season last year in Week 15 versus the Giants.