(SportsNetwork.com) - If New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning wants to continue his hot stretch Sunday night, all he has to do is look for No. 26.
That number would belong to Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Cary Williams.
Williams and the Eagles secondary have been the subject of criticism all season for giving up long pass plays and touchdowns regularly.
"Everybody on the outside looking in has no clue as to what we do in this defense or what's necessary for us to accomplish our goals as a cornerback or what's our job on a particular play," Williams said. "Even some commentators don't necessarily know what goes on because they're not sitting in the meeting rooms with us. It's a false perception, I guess, to a degree. But I mean it just is what it is. It's a hard life for a cornerback. And I think we've got the guys in our room to get the job done."
Now the NFC East-rival Giants come marching into Lincoln Financial Field for a primetime matchup and are riding high with three straight wins following an 0-2 start. The Giants have scored 30 or more points in each of the past three contests, averaging 35.0 ppg in that time, and Manning is at the forefront.
Manning has been protecting the ball during the win streak, tossing eight touchdown passes to just one interception. He had four INTs and three TD passes in the winless start to the season. Manning said in training camp he wanted to complete 70 percent of his passes and so far under offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo his numbers are at 66.3. McAdoo's offense is predicated on quick releases, shorter throws and timely reads, and Manning has paid attention to every detail.
The 11 touchdown passes tie Manning's career high through the first five games and he should eclipse last season's total of 18. Manning, who has posted three straight games with a rating above 100, helped lead the Giants to a 30-20 win over the Atlanta Falcons last weekend and connected with rookie Odell Beckham Jr. on a 15-yard scoring strike during 13-point fourth quarter. The Giants scored the last 20 points to erase a 10-point hole.
"The fourth quarter was ours," Giants head coach Tom Coughlin said. "It was very good. Congratulate our team. We battled back and we won the fourth quarter and looked like the Giants in the second half and all three areas contributed very well."
Beckham made his NFL debut and had missed the start of the season because of a hamstring injury suffered in training camp. He gives Manning another weapon on offense, joining wide receiver Victor Cruz and tight end Larry Donnell. Rookie running back Andre Williams will take over for Rashad Jennings, who is expected to miss a few weeks with a sprained MCL. Williams got the Giants rolling with a three-yard TD run versus Atlanta and finished with 65 yards.
Williams is excited for his first NFL start.
"I am very excited," Williams said. "It is going to be my first start. I just want to prepare as well as I can and make sure I am ready to compete at the highest level I can."
Williams and Beckham were the first Giants rookies to score TDs by rushing and receiving, respectively, in the same game since George Adams and Mark Bavaro did it twice in 1985.
New York is 3-2 and one game behind Philadelphia and Dallas for the division lead. The Cowboys have a tough one this week at Seattle and will host the Giants on Oct. 19.
The Eagles will have their hands full defensively and are 24th against the rush (132.0), 25th in points allowed (26.4), 28th in yards allowed (406.2) and 29th in pass defense (274.2).
Opponents haven't had trouble moving the football against the Eagles. St. Louis had 466 yards in Sunday's 34-28 loss and Rams rookie quarterback Austin Davis threw for 375 yards and three touchdowns. San Francisco racked up 407 yards the week before and got 119 yards on 24 carries from Frank Gore. Washington amassed 511 yards in Week 3 and both Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson reached the 100-yard receiving mark.
Jacksonville and Indianapolis had more than 300 yards apiece against the Eagles over the first two weeks.
Philadelphia may be just one of five teams allowing more than 400 yards, but its 4-1 record is tied for the best in the league.
"Tough 4-1, soft 4-1, it doesn't matter," Eagles head coach Chip Kelly remarked after beating the Rams. "You're 4-1. It's the same thing. You could be 1-4, 4-1, you've got to go back to work on Tuesday."
The defensive line is playing a lot better under coordinator Bill Davis. His unit has recorded eight sacks in the past two games and must continue to pressure the quarterback. Linebacker Connor Barwin leads the Eagles with three sacks, while Trent Cole has 2 1/2 and Vinny Curry two. The defense could be without linebackers DeMeco Ryans (groin) and Mychal Kendricks (calf). Kendricks hasn't played since a Monday night win over the Colts.
Ryans, though, said he expects to play and it was precautionary missing Tuesday's training session as well as Wednesday's.
"Just precautionary," Ryans said. "I just want to see how I feel. From Sunday to today I feel like I've made some strides. I'm feeling better. If it keeps going like it's going, by the end of the week I'm feeling good and hopefully I can go."
Casey Matthews and Emmanuel Acho will see more action if both Ryans and Kendricks are sidelined. Ryans is confident Matthews can handle the Giants.
"Casey's stepped in and he's done a really good job," Ryans said. "He's progressed over the past few weeks, and last week he played his best game."
The Giants are 82-74-2 in the regular season against the Eagles (2-2 playoffs) and have split the last four meetings between the teams. Including the playoffs, the Eagles have won eight of the previous 10 matchups. Coughlin is 11-11 (0-2 playoffs) in games versus the Eagles in the regular season.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Eagles quarterback Nick Foles is 7-0 with 13 touchdown passes and three interceptions in the past seven at home. He is trying to keep that streak going and also improve on his overall play Sunday night.
"We're continuing to progress," said Foles, who has thrown five INTs already after just two in 2013. "We're in spurts, and we want to be more consistent as an offense. But I saw us moving in the right direction. We just have to come out here this week, make more corrections and continue to work on execution.
"I've just missed a few throws. I've missed five percent more throws, and that's something that you want to continue to get better at, continue to grow each week. You want to be more accurate each week and you want to be a better player each week, and that's what I strive to do each and every day is just grow."
He has been sacked just once in the last four games after going down five times in Week 1 to the Jaguars. Foles has the weapons around him in Jeremy Maclin, Jordan Matthews, Darren Sproles and LeSean McCoy to name a few. McCoy was taken out of the game during the end of Sunday's win because running backs coach Duce Staley wanted fresh legs.
You can't blame Staley for doing what's best for the team. McCoy ran for a season-high 81 yards on 24 carries, but has only one TD run this season. He reached the end zone back in Week 2 at Indianapolis. McCoy liked what he saw from last week and got right tackle Lane Johnson back in the starting lineup.
"It felt good having Lane in there. Lane has always been the type of player who gets it done. He is fast, physical and very intelligent," McCoy said. "So, I was happy to have him out there. He helped us out today."
New York's defense is allowing 99.0 yards rushing this season (10th in NFL) and hopes to have former Eagle and starting cornerback Dominique Rodgers- Cromartie on the field. Rodgers-Cromartie is bothered by a list of injuries and said he practiced at full speed Wednesday.
The Eagles have seven touchdowns on returns this season and look to make things happen again on special teams and defense. For how poorly the Eagles are on the statistics side, they are starting to aggravate in all three areas.
"I think the Philly game is going to be another great test for our team," Giants cornerback Prince Amukamara said. "They are the defending (NFC East) champions and they have a great team on all three phases of the ball, so it's going to be a challenge."
Coughlin agreed with Amukamara when he said, "Every game is the most important game of the season. This is a divisional game. Obviously, Philadelphia is playing very, very well. It is a game within the division for us, so we are just excited for that opportunity."
The Giants lead the NFL with eight interceptions and will try to force Foles into making mistakes. Amukamara, Antrel Rolle and former Eagle Quintin Demps have two interceptions apiece.
All good things come to an end, and so will Philadelphia's regular season home winning streak. Manning and the Giants are playing great football lately and will go toe-to-toe with Kelly's up-tempo offense.
Nothing is better than beating your NFC East rival on the road and taking away the division lead in the process.
"We're just trying to make sure that we come out on top of our division this year," Rolle said. "Last year is last year. ... I feel like this year it's definitely up and rising. We didn't get a lot of credit in the preseason in our division, but I think now the tables are starting to turn a little bit. Dallas is playing good, Philly is playing good right now. I think we're rising and we're stepping up to the challenges and we're playing some good football right now."
A halftime show with local R&B group Boyz II Men won't help the Eagles.
Sports Network predicted outcome: Giants 31, Eagles 27