Tag Archives: Eli Manning

SBM Exclusive: Conversations Not Meant To Be Public – Tom Coughlin and Eli Manning


by J-Dub and Meehan

When a football team becomes a train wreck, much like the New York Giants have become, sometimes the concept of “team” starts to show cracks. As we have been prone to do in this series, we find those cracks and expose them to you, the blog-reading public.

It seems that just such a crack has surfaced with the New York Giants. for quite a while, there have been rumors that Eli Manning may not be the most disciplined quarterback out there, and that may be a problem for Nazi-wannabe Tom Coughlin. We here at Sports Blog Movement intercepted* a conversation between these two that may bear out Eli’s lackadaisical nature.

*Legal Disclaimer – J-Dub and Meehan have a strange way of defining certain terms. “Intercepted” should be read as “completely fucking fabricated” by these two jamokes during yet another of their nights spent snorting Pixie Sticks and D-Con until 6 a.m. Despite that, we here at Sports Blog Movement would be willing to bet these guys probably aren’t far from the truth…

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By Ryan Meehan

On Sunday the Giants dropped to 0-5 after they lost to the Philadelphia Eagles 36-21, at home no less.  David Wilson left the game around the midway point and would not return.  Eli’s numbers were far from impressive and/or tolerable, and it was yet another an all-around weak defensive performance when you consider Michael Vick (One of the Eagles’ most athletic player without a doubt) also left the game early.

My father told me about an article on Sports Illustrated’s subscriber feed that cited the 15 biggest disappointments in the NFL.  The Giants held three of them.  Hakeem Nicks was one, and the Giants offensive line was another.

The other was Eli Manning.  (Actually, he was number one overall)  Although Eli has had his share of unlucky moments in this first third of the season, eventually when it’s not working it doesn’t matter who’s fault it is. Continue reading


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What We Learned From Week Two of the 2013 NFL Season

by J-Dub and Meehan

Yet another week has passed in the sportsgasm that is the NFL season, and that means it is time for us to tell you some things you need to know without the self-serving spin those assbags at ESPN will never give you. We know this because if you think you can get real football information from guys like Merrill Hoge and Trent Dilfer, you probably also think the earth is flat and that Kennedy was assassinated by Daffy Duck.

1) Either the Jets aren’t that bad, or the Patriots aren’t that good: Pick one. 

Tom Brady Sideline Meltdown

Let’s just cut through the bullshit here; the Patriots aren’t that good.  When you see Tom Brady mugging, screaming, and eye-rolling at his receivers, you know that Patriots offense is more out-of-sync than a 1985 Yugo with bad spark plugs.  In contrast, when the Orlando Magic were in their heyday, Shaquille O’Neal once famously called coach Stan Van Gundy the “master of panic.”  Bill Belichick couldn’t be more opposite when it comes  to being so stoic people are worried pigeons might start shitting on him, but make no mistake. Brady’s antics show there is panic in Foxboro.

If you are the Patriots, this is exactly the time to start panicking. In all fairness, the Patriots could easily be 0-2.  There’s exactly four points separating them from being winless. They haven’t covered the spread yet. They were beat by Buffalo for 59 minutes, and they played down to the level of the sorry-ass Jets, so we can clearly understand why there’s a panic breaking out in New England.  For all of us who have had to suffer through the pretentious attitude Patriot fans are known for, we love hearing the panic in your voices, because it’s better than your tacky Boston accent that sounds like somebody left an audio interview of Godsmack on in the background.

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Consumed By Linsanity


The Knicks are a car accident to watch. It’s such a frightening mess and I know it’s bad to look at yet I still drag myself to a television set to watch this pathetic mess almost every night.

Last year they couldn’t play defense, this year they forgot how to score.
Bill Walker is a lackadaisical mess. Toney Douglas gets too trigger happy. Amare Stoudamire is the black David Lee (I told everyone this when he was signed but no one listened to me). Carmelo Anthony has no scoring help and all Mike D’Antoni could do was sit around and watch.

I wanted D’Antoni fired last year for his constant lack of detail, I wanted him fired this offseason for a defensive coach like Mike Brown, I want him fired this year because I’m sick of seeing him and his mustache.

Yet none of this matters right now in New York because Knick fans are on cloud nine thanks to a 6-3, 200 pound, undrafted point guard from Harvard that has become an overnight sensation.

His name is Jeremy Lin, and he is a gift from the heavens above.

Ok maybe I’m exaggerating a little, but jeez not even last year’s acquisition of Melo brought this much buzz an joy to the basketball Mecca that is the NYC.

Lin’s emergence came at a time when the Knicks desperately needed some good news. At 8-15 and flirting with a disastrous season that would’ve surely ended the D’Antoni era for the Knicks, Lin has caught fire and has led the Knicks through their best stretch of the season.

He’s been the missing piece that the fast pace D’Antoni offense has needed to get going. A pick and roll point guard with excellent vision and passing skills that is able to create shots for his teammates as well as fend for himself offensively.

Funny thing was that he was almost released to make room for the return of Baron Davis, I guess that won’t be happening now.

Ever since he stepped onto the court against the New Jersey Nets Lin has created a buzz across the league and has turned skeptics into believers.

He schooled Deron Williams and ran circles around him two Saturdays ago, he treated Devin Harris like a rag doll, he embarrassed John Wall with a sick crossover and dunk that was replayed over and over on Sportscenter, his performance against the Lakers last Friday will be talked about for years, and he showed toughness and moxie in gutting out a win in Minnesota.

He’s done it all from knocking down clutch free throws, reigniting Tyson Chandler’s game and leaving Derek Fisher flat-footed as he spun by for a highlight worthy lay in.

Yeah, I’m in love with this guy. But it took me a while to get into him.

Like most people I had to actually see him to believe him. Watching highlights of Lin didn’t tell the whole story. Yeah it was nice to see him drive at will against Utah and destroy the Nets already grim confidence but I wanted more.

I wanted to know three things about Lin while everyone was already crowning him the next big thing:

1. Can he handle the mounting pressure that comes with being an athlete in New York?
2. How does he deal with failure in a game and can he still stay on point when he’s not on his A game?
3. How will he play with the return of Stat and Melo (yeah, forgot about then right?)

My first question got answered on Friday against the Los Angeles Lakers.

The last few times the Lakers have hit The Big Apple it’s been Kobe Bryant’s town without question. He has carved his own name into Madison Square Garden lore with huge performances like scoring 61 points in a game there just years ago.

It was the perfect test for my Lin theory, play arguably the best player in the game and keep the Knicks on pace with the Lakers.

That was the first full time that I actually got to watch Lin, safe to say I was shocked by what I saw.

He didn’t just keep the Knicks in the game, he controlled it. He dominated the pace and flow of the game by continuously attacking the rim, floating lobs to Chandler, coming up steals on the defensive end and destroying Fisher and Steve Blake when the ball was in his hands.

He looked like a younger Steve Nash, honest to god. Just his style of play and the way he maneuvered around the Lakers reminded me of the two-time NBA MVP.

Every time the Knicks needed a big play or a big shot the ball found its way to Lin. He never backed down and always came through. 38 points & 7 assists later I was starting to get sold on the NBA’s Tim Tebow.

(yep I made a Tebow reference but all of the similarities and hype and mass coverage are there. The big difference? Lin can ball out, Tebow’s a bum… Just saying.)

The next test came the next night against the Timberwolves in a hyped up battle versus Ricky Rubio.

The main reason I wanted to see him fail is because I wanted to see if he was more like Eli Manning or Tony Romo.

When things don’t go Manning’s way his demeanor doesn’t change and he pressed on. For Romo he panics and loses his cool. I wanted to see if when things get too tight of Lin folds or rises to the occasion.

(yeah I fit an Eli reference in there, so what? By the way did you know that the New York Giants are Super Bowl Champions? God that makes me happy)

The T-Wolves game was a game of two halves. Lin was his usual self in the first half 7-12, 4 dimes and running the offense efficiently. In the second half Lin was totally taken out of rhythm. He only hit 1-12 shots and the Wolves forced him into bad shots and 4 turnovers.

However, I got the impression from Lin that even in tough stretches he still doesn’t get rattled.

Even with all of the turnovers and with his shots not finding the net he still continued to set up his other teammates including Steve Novak’s game tying three with less than a minute left. He also scored the winning point from the free throw line after being fouled getting to the basket.

Even without a dominant performance Lin still found a way to pull out a win for the Knicks. That was enough to make me even more of a believer.

Now the third and most interesting task is at hand… Can Lin, Melo and Stat all work together to be effective?

Carmelo Anthony has received a lot of bad press in the last week with all of the Linsanity spreading through NY.

It’s as if we forget that we wanted Melo here in the first place, it’s not his fault that the Knicks traded the farm to get him (thanks James Dolan). Melo has always needed a point guard to stabilize this offense to make more effective. Sorry Toney Douglas wasnt the answer.

With Lin’s emergence Melo and Amar’e for that matter now have a lot less pressure on their shoulders to score.

The main question is can Melo let Lin run the offense without asking for the ball too much?

As dynamic of a scorer as he is, Melo holds onto the ball for too long in too many stretches of the game. With Lin at the point now Melo will have to find his rhythm in the game and let it come to him.

Besides elevating Chandler, Landry Fields has found his game and confidence and Novak has become a reliable shooter off of the bench. The Knicks have gone from a two horse team to an actual team with a good rotation.

If Melo can stay dominant while letting this mix still cook then the Knicks will be making noise come playoff time.

If not then he’ll be the one taking most of the criticism if the Knicks go back to struggling.

The next stage of Linsanity is upon us. He won’t be throwing up 25 shots a game any more or dropping 38 on defenses, but I believe that after watching Jeremy Lin he is the answer to a lot of the Knicks woes.

Lin has dazzled America, balled out on every opponent that he’s faced and is getting better by the day.

In a city consumed by sports with the Giants winning Super Bowls, the Rangers leading the NHL and the Yankees always on the back pages, the Knicks have wiggled their way back into the minds of New Yorkers.

Linsanity is here and hopefully it’s not a flash in the pan.

Kevin Howard is The Brooklyn Buckeye because he is from Brooklyn, NY and is a graduate of The Ohio State University. Follow him on twitter @brooklyngohard and on his blog site at brooklynbuckeye.wordpress.com


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149 days, 3,576 hours, 214,560 minutes and 12,873,600 seconds ago, the New Orleans Saints and the Green Bay Packers kicked off the 2011-12 NFL

Graphic made by Sam Brief…

season with a bang. 149 days later, only two teams remain: The New York Giants and the New England Patriots. It’s Super Bowl XLVI, and it’s football’s biggest stage. Here’s my comprehensive preview of America’s most watched event complete with a prediction.



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Super Bowl Preview

This is it! The moment all football fans have been waiting for. Super Bowl weekend. As most people are making preparations for their respective Super Bowl bashes, the New York Giants and New England Patriots are making final preparations and adjustments to the biggest game of the year. So before you dig into your plate of nachos, your tall glass of beer, or munching on whatever snacks you crave, here’s what to look for in the actual game. (Personally I don’t care about the commercials or Madonna at halftime. This is a sports blog. Not TMZ.)

When the Giants have the ball:

Coming into this game, there is no player who’s on a bigger roll than Eli Manning. The Giants quarterback, (formerly known as Peyton’s younger brother) as been sensational for the G-Men, leading his team to 5 straight wins in pressure packed situations. In those 5 games, Manning has thrown for 12 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions. He’s been an effective leader and has used his receivers wisely in key situations. Victor Cruz has emerged as a breakout star this season. The Giants deep threat has the speed to make any secondary take note. Hakeem Nicks and Mario Manningham are solid possession receivers. The running game struggled during the regular season but has been improved in the postseason. Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs will need to provide tough yards ad maintain possession for the Giants to be successful. The offensive line did struggle in the NFC Championship game against San Francisco, giving up 6 sacks and allowing the 49ers defence to harass Manning all game. The Giants will need a better effort from the big men in the trenches if they have any hope in raising the Lombardi trophy.

The Patriots defence has been questionable all season. The secondary in particular has struggled giving up the second most passing yards in the NFL. The one bright spot in the secondary is Kyle Arrington who shared the league lead in interceptions, picking off 7 wayward throws. The linebackers are led by Jerod Mayo who led the team with 95 tackles. Mayo is most noted as a run stopper but will blitz the quarterback when called upon. Mayo will line up all over the field and will try to confuse Manning all game by either showing blitz, then dropping back into coverage or coming on delayed blitzes from up the middle. The front four is led by the enormous Vince Wilfork who was the MVP of the AFC Championship game. Wilfork completely shut down the Ravens running game while putting tremendous pressure on Joe Flacco. With the Giants O-Line having some issues, look for Wilfork to be a key factor in the game on Sunday.

When The Patriots Have The Ball:

The Patriots offence begins and ends with Tom Brady. And somewhere in the middle, Tom Brady is in there too. Whether you love him or hate him, there is no denying the fact that Brady will go down as one of the all-time greats. Don’t believe me? Here’s some numbers to prove that. This season alone, Brady completed 65.6% of his pass attempts, which ranked him 4th in the NFL. Brady threw for 5,235 yards which ranked him 2nd in the NFL. Brady also has 39 touchdown passes to his credit. His quarterback rating was 105.6 which was 3rd in the NFL. Most importantly, he wins. No quarterback has won more games in the last 10 years than Brady. No quarterback has won more playoff games than Brady in the last 10 years. And no quarterback has won more Super Bowls in the last 10 years than Tom Brady. If the Patriots do win the Super Bowl, Brady will tie Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw for most Super Bowl victories by a starting quarterback ever! Having said that, Brady can’t do it alone. Wes Welker and Deion Branch will have to come up with key catches on the outside. Welker in particular loves the crossing route and he’ll have to find open spaces in the middle and be ready to receive the pass at full speed. With tight end Rob Gronkowski listed as questionable with  an ankle problem, the Patriots could be without one of their key offensive weapons. Aaron Hernandez will have to step up his game and play a key part in case Gronkowski cant’ go. The running game isn’t a strength for New England. Yes, BenJarvus Green-Ellis is a solid runner and Danny Woodhead is an efficient blocker but if the Patriots need them to win the game, they are in trouble. The offensive line is excellent for the Pats. They’ve given up only one sack in two playoff games, and have given Brady time and a good pocket to throw the football. They will need to be even better against a potent Giants pass rush.

Speaking of the Giants defence, they have been superb in the playoffs as well. They only allowed 2 points against Atlanta, they shut down the mighty Packers and matched up very well against a tough San Francisco team. The front four is led by Jason Pierre-Paul who led the team with 16.5 sacks in the regular season. The rest of the league took notice and Pierre-Paul has been subjected to double teams in the playoffs. That has led the way for Osi Umenyiora who has recorded 3.5 sacks in the playoffs, tying him for the league lead. Pierre-Paul will have to be better at fighting off the double teams he’s sure to see but the rest of the front four will have to put pressure on Brady and make sure he’s not comfortable throughout the game. The linebackers are solid but not spectacular. A workmanlike group who won’t make big mistakes, stay in their tackling lanes and are sure tacklers. Chase Blackburn has had an excellent playoff run and could be emerging as a star at middle linebacker. The secondary struggled in the regular season but has been much better in the playoffs. The safety play of Antrel Rolle and Deon Grant has been terrific for the Giants and they will be called upon even more in this game.

Special Teams:

With Special Teams being a huge factor in both championship games, it could be a deciding factor in the Super Bowl. Lawrence Tynes is a solid placekicker for the Giants making 79% of his field goals in the regular season while making 75% of his kicks in the postseason. Stephen Gostkowski has been outstanding for the Patriots making 85% of his field goals in the regular season. Gostkowski is perfect so far in the playoffs not missing a single kick. The Patriots have one punt returned for a touchdown but both teams are not known for their return game. However both are solid in kick coverage so don’t expect a huge play in the kick return game.


One thing that should be mentioned. The Giants did defeat the Patriots 24-20 back on November 6. Everyone remembers Super Bowl XLII when the Giants ended the Patriots undefeated season in a memorable contest. I think the Giants can put pressure on Brady and Eli Manning will pick apart a questionable Patriots secondary. Tom Brady will make plays and put points on the board but I don’t trust the Patriots defence. I have the Giants winning 31-24 and taking home their fourth Vince Lombardi trophy.

You can follow me on Twitter @jstar1973


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The Dubsism Quarterback Douchebag Scale

Throughout life, we deal with units of measure.  To me, the most interesting are scales; where a level of intensity is assigned to an event or quality based on a quantifiable measure. The world of weather brings us the Saffir-Simpson scale for hurricane intensity or the Fujita scale for tornadoes. Seismologists categorizes earthquakes according to the Richter scale.

However, as a sports fan I’ve noticed there is a discernable level of jerk-like behavior present in NFL quarterbacks. Moreover, once I noticed the stratification of this behavior, I discovered that it too needed a rating scale so we may better understand the levels of douchebag present in any quarterback.  It is crucial to note this rating scale is completely independent of on-the-field performance.

With that, I present the J-Dub Quarterback Douchebag Scale:

Douchebag Level 0 – Condition “Drew Brees”

No levels of douchebag seen with any currently accepted means of detection. Quarterback may in fact be one of those guys who is almost “too good to be true;” many “pillar of the community” types who are later discovered to have girl scouts in their freezers are Level 0.

Douchebag Level 1 –  Condition “Tim Tebow”

Trace amounts of douchebag seen by one or more currently accepted means of detection. Amounts of douchebag present are harmless, even after long periods of exposure. Level 1 is usually separated from Level 0 by an extreme presence of religion and/or overwhelming virtue.

Douchebag Level 2 –  Condition “Kyle Orton”

Statistically insignificant amounts of douchebag seen by one or more currently accepted means of detection. Level 2 is generally characterized as being generally inoffensive while being a complete opposite of Level 1 in terms of lifestyle; Level 2 types tend to be the “lets get some beer and play Xbox all night” guys.

Douchebag Level 3 – Condition “Aaron Rodgers”

Occasional spikes of minor douchiness, usually manifested in goofy “in the moment” displays of exuberance. Level 3 are generally harmless unless subjected to prolonged, close-proximity exposure.

Douchebag Level 4 –  Condition “Eli Manning”

Similar criteria to Level 3, with the added presence of an ever-present smug and/or stupid smirk.

Douchebag Level 5 – Condition “Tony Romo”

Occasional to frequent spikes of minor douchiness seen by one or more currently accepted means of detection, an ever-present smug and/or stupid smirk coupled with a proclivity for baseball caps worn backwards.

Douchebag Level 6 – Condition “Jay Cutler”

Significant baseline amounts of minor douchebag punctuated by occasional major D-bag spikes . Levels present can be harmful to a locker room with prolonged exposure. Level 6 are characterized with brooding personalities and tendencies to mimic traits from higher-level douchebags.

Douchebag Level 7 – Condition “Mark Sanchez”

Moderate baseline amounts of minor douchebag punctuated by frequent major D-bag spikes. Levels present can be harmful to a locker room with moderate exposure.  Level 7 are the most likely to be found with their dicks stuck in a Kardashian.

Douchebag Level 8 – Condition “Philip Rivers”

Moderate baseline amounts of major douchebag punctuated by occasional catastrophic D-bag spikes.  Levels present can be harmful to a locker room with moderate exposure. Level 8 are notorious for focusing efforts on the wrong things at the wrong times.

Douchebag Level 9 – Condition “Tom Brady”

Heavy baseline amounts of major douchebag punctuated by occasional to frequent catastrophic D-bag spikes.  Levels present can be harmful to a locker room with short-term exposure. May be more interested in hairstyles and fashion than football.

Douchebag Level 10 – Condition “Peyton Manning”

Constant levels of catastrophic douchebag. Levels present can be toxic to entire organizations with even short-term exposure. Level 10 characterized by extreme narcisissism and a complete inability to have anything other than a self-centric point of view.


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One Play Doesn’t Make A Game

(Kyle Williams picture courtesy of http://www.newsday.com)

The New York Giants and the New England Patriots are in the Super Bowl again against each other. The last time they were facing off in the Super Bowl, the Giants knocked off the Patriots in 2007. But instead of the attention being on these teams and their Super Bowl rematch, the attention has been focused on three select plays that supposedly won their conference championship games.

In the AFC Championship game, the Baltimore Ravens were playing their hearts out. They even went as far as to hold Patriots quarterback Tom Brady without a touchdown pass(22/36, 239 yards, 0 TDs, 2 INTs), which was a shocking feat. Sure, Flacco threw an interception, but for the most part, he didn’t play too bad(22/36, 306 yards, 2 TDs). But the burning image in everyone’s minds from this game was the kick heard round the Northeast. Snap, set and kick. All-Pro kicker Billy Cundiff sails a potential game-tying kick to the left and the Ravens come up short. Now many will say he was the goat, but we need to look at a few things here. The Ravens are a physical football team and their best and most important weapon on their offense is running back Ray Rice. Rice had a great season(291 attempts, 1364 yards, 12 TDs), but when it counted most, he wasn’t able to provide that consistent running threat that the Ravens usually have(21 carries, 67 yards). This means one thing: the offensive line was not getting it done up front. When the Ravens are getting it done up front, they are getting to the next level of the defense(linebackers), providing Ray Rice running lanes. Another thing that you will want to look at is that wide receiver Lee Evans missed a touchdown catch as well. He got stripped by Patriots defensive back Sterling Moore on what most thought was a for-sure TD catch. Moore simply had the drive to make the play more than Evans.

In the NFC Championship game, the Giants made their big field goals when they needed them. But the fielding of a couple kicks seems to have caught the public’s eye. San Francisco wide receiver/return man Kyle Williams was subbing for the injured Ted Ginn, Jr. as the punt returner. He let one kick brush off his leg and the Giants got that fumble and turned it into a 17-14 lead on the strength of a Manning to Manningham touchdown throw. Then he was returning a punt in overtime and he was stripped and the Giants recovered that one as well. The Giants took that fumble and turned it into a game-winning field goal. People began to bombard Kyle Williams’ Twitter account with death threats. But what I want these people to take a look at is the amount of third downs the 49ers converted: 1. Yes that’s right. They only converted 1 third down into a first down. The struggles of the San Fran offense and the inability of their defense to contain Cruz in the first half are all reasons that the team lost.

My point in displaying all this information is simple: one play doesn’t cost a team a game. A missed block here, a missed read on a coverage, and a missed tackle contribute just as much to a loss as a missed field goal and a muffed punt do. So before people blame the loss on one play, look at the whole picture, not just the fragments of a loss.

-Mike Patton


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The Definitive Sports Blog Movement Super Bowl Preview

Let’s start with my original playoff predictions:

New England Patriots

Why They Can Win:

Because Tom Brady is still Tom Brady; one of the greatest quarterbacks in the history on the NFL, and he isn’t far enough past his prime to be discounted.

Why They Can’t Win:

To see the future in Foxboro, just look toward Indianapolis. Don’t look right this second, because you may notice the Patriots are beginning to get old before your very eyes.  They are the worst 13-3 team I’ve ever seen – they define over-rated.  They can’t run the ball and their defense couldn’t stop a Pop Warner team, yet somehow they are top-seed in the AFC.

All this team has is Tom Brady, and that’s just enough to hide the real defects in this team. There’s a reason I call this the “Manning Rule.”

Odds of Winning: 18 to 1

New York Giants

Why They Can Win:

Take a coin out of your pocket. This coin represents the streakiness of the New York Giants. Flip the coin. Heads, Giants win.

Why They Can’t Win:

That complete lack of consistency drives me batshit crazy. Flip that coin Again. Tales, Giants lose. Eli Manning is easily my favorite player to watch in the NFL; he is like a poker player who loses a shitload of $50 pots, and just enough $10,000 ones to stay above water.  This time, Eli is all in with two pair.

Odds of Winning: 20 to 1

Now that we are down to a head-to-head matchup, there are three categories to analyze.

1) What Vegas Thinks

Anybody who loves to bet knows professional gamblers pay attention to five key categories:

  • Yards Rushing per Game – Patriots 110.2, Giants 89.2
  • Yards Rushing Allowed Per Game – Patriots 117.1, Giants 121.2
  • Points Scored Per Game – Patriots 32.1, Giants 24.6
  • Points Allowed Per Game – Patriots 21.4, Giants 25.0
  • Ratio of Points Scored to Points Allowed –Patriots 1.5, Giants 0.984

This discussion falls into the classic “more than meets the eye” department because it would seem to be a clean sweep for the Patriots. But the number get more curious when you consider that the above bulleted stats are from the regular season. The numbers change quite a bit when you keep them to the post-season.

  • Post-Season Yards Rushing per Game – Patriots 121.0, Giants 117.3
  • Post-Season Yards Rushing Allowed Per Game – Giants 120.3, Patriots 130.0
  • Post-Season Points Scored Per Game – Patriots 34, Giants 27
  • Post-Season Points Allowed Per Game – Giants 15, Patriots 13
  • Post-Season Ratio of Points Scored to Points Allowed –Patriots 2.62, Giants 1.8

Now instead of being a distinct advantage for New England, there has been a definite closing of the gap by the Giants. The numbers still point to the Patriots being a better bet, but consider the environment in which this significant statistical improvement occurred.

  • The Patriots played two games at home. One of those games was against the Broncos, whose anemic performance skews the post-season numbers dramatically toward making the Patriots appear better than they really are.
  • The Giants played three games total, two of which were on the road against the top two seeds in the NFC (Packers and 49ers). The Giants man-handled the Packers (who were a prohibitive favorite) in Lambeau Field, and took down the 49ers in overtime in a quagmire at Candlestick.

Boil it all down, and it means the Giants have been far more impressive than the Patriots in the post-season. This is why despite the picture painted by the numbers, the Patriots are only a 3 point favorite.

Advantage: Push

2) The On-the-Field Matchups

  • The Battle of the Trenches

The Giants go as far as their offensive line, which is a unit that has played out of its mind the last three playoff games. The Patriots can’t offer anywhere near what the 49ers did, and New York handled San Francisco with relative ease. Meanwhile, the front four of the Giants are going to make themselves well-know to Tom Brady’s face.

  • The Battle of the Quarterbacks

Brady vs. Manning II: This time it’s personal.  Actually, this time it is without David “Helmet Catch” Tyree.  So now it’s likely to be less about Eli getting lucky, and about Brady finally showing how over-rated of a quarterback he really is.  Try this one on for size: Who would had a better season – Tim Tebow with the Patriots or Tom Brady with the Broncos?

Not to mention, even sportswriters have figured out how to beat Brady. And like it or not, a lot of Brady’s passing stats are heavily padded by the yards-after-catch of the Wes Welker and Rob Gronkowski’s of the world.

  • The Battle of the Non-Over-Rated B.S.

Neither team runs the ball particularly, but the Giants have picked up their game as of late. Neither team is really worth discussing in the defensive backfield. Both teams rely on their offensive lines, big-play quarterbacks, and a couple of downfield play-makers.  To me, the Giants pass-rush will make the difference.

Advantage: Giants

3) A Comparison of the Cities

The trouble here is that by judging where these teams respective stadia are located, there  really aren’t any cities to compare. I know that it is petty and anal retentive, but it has always been a pet peeve of mine that the “New York” Giants actually play in New Jersey. I’ll even admit it is a double-standard; I don’t apply this to the Jets, probably because they were treated as the little brother of New York football for decades. I get that East Rutherford is a mere six miles from mid-town Manhattan, but the concrete canyons of the city might as well be a world away from the partially-drained swamp they call Meadowlands.

At least the Patriots are sort of honest about it. They aren’t trying to get you to believe that some jerkwater hick town somewhere in greater New England where they likely still burn witches  is still somehow “Boston.”

Advantage: Patriots


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