View Full Version : NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP, SUNDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2011 - GAMEDAY - 10:23 A.M.

12-04-2011, 10:23 AM
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</font><font size="4"><u>NEWARK STAR LEDGER</u></font>

GIANTS' GAMEDAY: GIANTS HOST PACKERS (http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2011/12/giants_gameday_giants_host_gre.html)

Excerpt: "Giants (http://www.nj.com/giants/) (6-5) vs. Green Bay

Week 14
Today, 4:15 p.m.
MetLife Stadium, East
Radio: WFAN 660-AM</p>

The Giants’ pass rush</p>

After Monday night’s blowout loss, the Giants know firsthand how important it
is to have an effective pass rush against an elite quarterback. <a href="http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2011/11/giants_vs_saints_drew_brees_ne.html">The
New Orleans Saints’ Drew Brees</a> wasn’t sacked once and rarely saw pressure as
the Saints reeled off 49 points; the only time Brees was on the ground may have
been when he dove into the end zone on his 8-yard touchdown run. It was another
poor showing for a unit that led the league with 28 sacks through eight games,
but has since recorded just three. As against Brees, the Giants need to disrupt
Aaron Rodgers to have any chance of stopping the efficient machine that is the
Packers’ offense. If not, Green Bay could also put 49 points on the scoreboard
without a problem — if not more as they almost did in last year’s meeting with
the Giants when Rodgers threw for 404 yards and four touchdowns as <a href="http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2010/12/once_atop_the_nfc_east_giants.html">the
Packers routed the Giants, 45-17.</a> The task will be more difficult this week
without defensive end Osi Umenyiora, who suffered a severe ankle sprain against
the Saints, but the Giants need to mask their deficiencies in coverage without
the luxury of an aggressive blitzing scheme. </p>

If Brandon
Jacobs runs north-south and not east-west </p>

At 6-4, 260 pounds, Brandon Jacobs is as big as any running back in the NFL.
He has made a career as a physical downhill runner, bowling over players to gain
yards after contact. But he is averaging just 3.1 yards per carry this season
and has heard boos from the home crowd in large part because he has been running
more east-west than north-south. Part of the problem has been the offensive
line, but he needs to hit holes quickly and use his physicality. </p>

<big>PAST MEETINGS</big></p>

10. Dec. 20, 1986: Giants 55, Packers 24
9. Dec. 19, 1987: Giants 20,
Packers 10
8. Nov. 8, 1992: Giants 27, Packers 7
7. Sept. 17, 1995 at
Green Bay: Packers 14, Giants 6
6. Nov. 15, 1998: Packers 37, Giants 3
Jan. 6, 2002: Packers 34, Giants 25
4. Oct. 3, 2004 at Green Bay: Giants 14,
Packers 7
3. Sept. 16, 2007: Packers 35, Giants 13
2. Jan. 20, 2008 at
Green Bay (NFC Championship): Giants 23, Packers 20
1. Dec. 26, 2010 at Green
Bay: Packers 45, Giants 17</p>

Remember when ...
The Giants shocked the world by winning
Super Bowl XLII against the undefeated New England Patriots? To get to there,
the Giants needed overtime to beat the Packers, 23-20, in the NFC Championship
Game at Lambeau Field in Brett Favre’s final game in a Packer uniform. In the
victory, the Giants relied on the run game — Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw
each had a touchdown and combined for 130 of the team’s 134 yards on the ground,
while the Packers mustered only 28 rushing yards on 14 carries. Eli Manning
didn’t throw a touchdown, but also didn’t throw an interception, completing 21
of his 40 passes for 254 yards.</p>


1. Teams have been able to throw against the Packers
Packers defense has allowed the third-most total yards in the NFL, and the
passing defense, which ranks 31st in passing yards allowed (3,166), has been the
main culprit. At the same time, they face an average of 39.6 pass attempts per
game, third most in the league because teams often find themselves playing from
behind. But their 7.6 yards per pass attempt average is tied for 22nd in the NFL
— a spot ahead of the Giants — and suggests it’s more than that. To sum it up:
Eli Manning should be able to find some success today as he did last week
against the Saints. It’s just a matter of turning the productivity into points
and keeping with the Packers, which the Giants weren’t able to do against the

2. Teams have been successful in getting to Aaron Rodgers
Give most
starting quarterbacks in this league enough time and they’ll make a defense pay.
Allow an elite quarterback to stand in the pocket with time consistently — as
the Giants did against Drew Brees — and you’re in for a long night. However,
Aaron Rodgers has been able to light up defenses despite facing significant
pressure. Rodgers has been sacked 27 times this season, which ranks seventh in
the league — between Philip Rivers and Colt McCoy. The Giants’ pass rush hasn’t
been the same lately, but for the Giants to have any chance to win today they
need to get to Rodgers. But even if they do, it very well might not be enough.
It can’t hurt, though.</p>

3. The Packers are not as good on the road as they are at
Sure, that’s the case with most teams, but there are only so
many chinks in an 11-0 team’s armor. In their five games at Lambeau Field, the
Packers’ average margin of victory is 20.6; in their six road games the margin
shrinks to 8.8. On Wednesday, Tom Coughlin highlighted the Packers’ struggles in
recent road games — if you can call going 6-0 on the road “struggles” — and said
it was something the team was going to “cling” to going into today’s game. He
may have been scrapping for any way to put a positive spin on the matchup, but
he also may have a point. The Packers beat the Minnesota Vikings (2-9) by just
six points in Week 7 and the San Diego Chargers (4-7) by seven in Week 9.</p>


Aaron Rodgers is playing on a whole other
level. He leads the NFL in quarterback rating (127.7), completion percentage
(71.8), and passing touchdowns (33) against just four
Edge: Packers</p>

Running back
At this point, one would have to take any
team’s running game over the Giants’, who remain last in the league in yards per
carry (3.2).
Edge: Packers</p>

Wide receiver/Tight end
Hakeem Nicks is an elite receiver
and Victor Cruz may now be Manning’s favorite target, but the Packers have an
assortment of dangerous weapons at Rodgers’ disposal.

Edge: Packers</p>

Offensive line
The Giants offensive line shoulders much
of the blame for the running game’s ineffectiveness, which continued last week
against the Saints.
Edge: Packers</p>

Defensive line
The Giants pass rush didn’t record a sack
last week and will be without Osi Umenyiora today, but there’s still plenty of
talent on the defensive front.
Edge: Giants</p>

The Packers boast what may be the NFL’s best
group of linebackers led by Clay Matthews, while the Giants signed Chase
Blackburn this week for some help.

The Packers have allowed the second-most
passing yards this season, but also have the most interceptions in the league
and Charles Woodson looming.
Edge: Packers</p>

Special teams
Mason Crosby is 18-for-19 on field-goal
attempts this season and rookie Randall Cobb is a big-play threat on both kick
and punt returns.
Edge: Packers
</p><big>FOUR DOWNS WITH ...</big>

Safety Tyler

1. A lot of your tweets include ‘GBNB.’ What does that
It’s something my grandpa passed down to my dad and my dad
passed it down to me. When I was younger, like if I was going in to shoot
baskets before a game in the morning and I didn’t want to get up at 6, he
wouldn’t even say, “Hey, it’s time to get up.” He’d just be like, “It’s get
better day, not get bitter day.” He just put it in my mind to look at everything
in a positive way.</p>

2. How is you rookie year going so far?
It’s been a
learning experience for me in all areas. In college I never really played
special teams so the whole special teams game is new to me. I played wing on
punt in college one year and that’s it. I just had to contain and that’s the
easiest job in the world. I’m just learning that now and playing to the best of
my abilities.</p>

3. How have the veteran guys in the secondary been with
They’ve been great from day one. Deon Grant’s been great with
me; I kind of play a lot of the similar things he plays. And Kenny (Phillips)
and Antrel (Rolle) have been helpful as well. They communicate with me what they
saw and why they did something when we’re watching film and stuff. During games
I’ll tell them some things that I’ll see like route combinations and stuff like

4. The Packers and Saints have similar offenses, but are there any
Obviously, we’re playing one of the best, if not the
best, quarterback in the NFL right now. And I know from sitting in meetings that
guys are — I mean, they’re attentive every week — but this week it’s kind of
like, “We need to get this done.” One thing they don’t have — I mean they have
good backs don’t get me wrong — but they don’t have a guy like (Darren) Sproles
that can hurt you with a run or on the swing pass. A lot of their backs stay in
pass protection so that frees up one more defender in the passing game.</p>


Don’t expect Da’Rel Scott, who has been returning kicks and seeing some time
at running back with Ahmad Bradshaw out, to get as many touches after fumbling
in each of the last two games. This week, Tom Coughlin said the rookie’s
mistakes were “bothersome” to him."</p>

<a href="http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2011/12/giants_vs_packers_justin_tuck.html">GIANTS VS. PACKERS: JUSTIN TUCK HOPING "OLD TUCK" WILL SHOE UP IN TODAY'S CRITICAL GAME

Excerpt: "The old Justin Tuck put both hands on Bryan Bulaga’s shoulders. He sensed
weakness in his opponent, so he buried the crown of his helmet under Bulaga’s
facemask, drove his feet and shed the rookie tackle. He reached out his right
hand to grab Aaron Rodgers then brought the other around and dropped the Packers
quarterback to the Lambeau Field grass last December.</p>

“Old Tuck feels great,” the Giants (http://www.nj.com/giants/)’
defensive captain said the other day. “Old Tuck feels like no one can block
him.” </p>

New Tuck can’t do all of that, can’t use his neck in conjunction with his
feet and arms — well, at least not one of them. He’s in pain, he’s frustrated
and he’s starting to act like it. He’s reaching out for quarterbacks and seeing
them slip out of his grasp. He’s looking at his stats (two sacks in seven games)
and thinking he’s not getting the job done.</p>

He’s kneeling on the Superdome turf, watching Drew Brees shake off opponents
to make a play — just like Old Tuck did — instead of chasing him down.</p>

He’s just having one of those years.</p>

But today against the Green Bay Packers, Tuck and the Giants’ defense have an
opportunity to turn their season around. By getting to Rodgers, they can
neutralize one of the league’s best passing attacks, something they were unable
to do last week against Brees and the New Orleans Saints. Defensive coordinator
<a href="http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2011/12/giants_perry_fewell_angered_by.html">Perry
Fewell has challenged his pass-rushers</a> to get after Rodgers, to “will”
themselves to get through double teams and to not “pull up short” on plays
before the whistle.</p>

Fewell didn’t name any names, but it’s clear who he wants to see today: Old
Tuck, who fought through a triple team for a sack against the Philadelphia
Eagles last year. And he just might get his wish.</p>

“Things get tough, you have to get tougher,” defensive end Dave Tollefson
said when asked about Tuck’s mental state right now. “The longer you play this
game, the more stuff like what’s happening to him now is going to happen. You’re
going to have a drought.</p>

“He’s his own man. As far as what can we do to help him, we can just do our
job and expect the most out of him. … It’s such a wishy-washy deal as far as,
‘Is he really playing bad?’ I don’t think so.” Read more...
</p><font size="4"><u>NY DAILY NEWS
GIANTS' ELI MANNING TO MAN UP AGAINST PACKERS, PLAY PERFECT GAME TO HALT SLIDE AND RESTORE HOPE (http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/ny-giants-eli-manning-man-green-bay-perfect-game-halt-slide-restore-hope-article-1.986474)

Excerpt: "Aaron Rodgers (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Aaron+Rodgers) is
having a better season than Drew Brees (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Drew+Brees), maybe the
best season for a quarterback in NFL history.<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">

Brees just humiliated the Giants by scoring 49 points and the Saints
accumulated 577 yards of offense, the second most given up by the Giants in the
87-year history of the storied franchise.</p>

Now for the really bad news: The free-falling Giants, who desperately need a
victory to restore their shaky confidence and to re-establish themselves in the
NFC East and wild-card races, have to stop Rodgers and end the Packers 17-game
winning streak on Sunday afternoon.</p>

Green Bay has scored 20 more points than the Saints - they are averaging a
league-best 34.7 points per game and have gone over 40 points four times in 11
games. Rodgers has 33 TDs, only four interceptions and is completing 71.8% of
his passes. When the ball hits the ground, it’s headline news. The Giants would
be much better off if they were playing the Colts.</p>

So, unless the Giants defense shows some pride, doesn’t quit, the pass rush
comes out of hiding and bounces Rodgers around a few times, then it could get
really ugly at MetLife Stadium. Keep this in mind: 63 is the most points the
Giants have ever given up in a game. Even as poorly as the defense played last
week, the team record really shouldn’t be in jeopardy.</p>

Rodgers is the third Super Bowl MVP quarterback that Eli Manning (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Eli+Manning), a Super
Bowl MVP himself, is facing in the last five games. He outplayed <a title="Tom Brady" href="http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Tom+Brady">Tom
Brady</a> in the Giants’ victory in Foxborough on Nov. 13. And even though he
threw for 406 yards last week against the Saints, the second most of his career,
the Giants lost by 25 points.</p>

The Packers have been perfect this season. The Giants need Manning to be
perfect against the Packers. But he claims he never goes into a game thinking
he’s got to match the other quarterback.</p>

“You never get into that,” he said. “You got to play the game. I’m playing
against the defense, trying to make decisions off them and go out and run the
offense efficiently.”</p>

The Giants have not scored a first half touchdown in four straight games. Not
very efficient. If Rodgers starts piling up points, it will put pressure on
Manning to do the same."
</p></div>GIANTS NEED TO MAKE ITS POINT ON OFFENSE IN ORDER TO TAKE DOWN UNBEATEN GREEN BAY PACKERS (http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/ny-giants-point-offense-order-unbeaten-green-bay-packers-article-1.986470)

Excerpt: "They are about to face a loaded offense that averages a league-best 34.7
points per game, and they’re going to do battle with Aaron Rodgers (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Aaron+Rodgers), the
most accurate and efficient quarterback in the NFL.<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">

For the slumping Giants, the best defense against that high-powered Green Bay
attack just may be a serious dose of offense.</p>

“Our defense is going to come to play,” said wideout Victor Cruz (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Victor+Cruz). “They’re
going to do a good job. But the reality is they (the Packers) are going to put
up points. . . . There’s a lot of pressure on us. We have to be able to
withstand their run, withstand what they’re able to do and be able to put points
up ourselves.”</p>

For all the criticism that the Giants defense has absorbed in the past week,
their offense also enters Sunday’s showdown with the undefeated Packers in an
equally frustrating slump. While the Eli Manning (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Eli+Manning)-led unit
continually piles up yards, it has struggled to put points on the board during
the three-game losing skid.</p>

And the defense must routinely play from behind, because the offense has gone
four straight games without a first-half touchdown.</p>

“That’s a constant question,” coach Tom Coughlin (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Tom+Coughlin)
said of the team’s first-half scoring drought.</p>

Coughlin still can’t help thinking back to Monday’s loss to the Saints and
wondering what could have been, if only his offense hadn’t squandered a
brilliant early opportunity. Even on Friday, he wondered how things might have
been different if Manning hadn’t thrown an interception on the Giants’ first
drive, if he’d found tight end Jake Ballard (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Jake+Ballard) in the
end zone.</p>

“We take it the length of the field, throw a touchdown pass, up 7-0 against
this team (the Saints) at home,” he said. “But it didn’t happen. Of course
(then), they drive it and score. That’s frustrating.”
</p></div>GIANTS REFUSE TO PACK IT IN (http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/ny-giants-refuse-pack-green-bay-big-blue-prepares-back-talk-article-1.986467)

Excerpt: "The Giants have talked amongst themselves, they’ve been lectured by a legend,
and most recently they were thrashed by their own defensive coordinator. They’ve
been analytical and they’ve been angry. They’ve been calm and they’ve been “too
calm.”<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">

They’ve said all the right things, and a few wrong things. In the last few
weeks, the Giants have said a lot.</p>

While they were yapping, though, their season took a disturbing nosedive to
the critical point it has reached Sunday afternoon. The Giants (6-5) now have to
beat the undefeated, defending Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers (11-0) at
MetLife Stadium. If they don’t, there’s a chance their entire season could die
when they travel to Dallas next week.</p>

In other words, as defensive captain Justin Tuck (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Justin+Tuck) said, “We
have talked enough.” Now is the time for them to finally back up their

“We’re going to find out a lot about all of us on Sunday. I know that — if
we’ve got the pride and the heart and determination to make this right,” said <a title="Dave Tollefson" href="http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Dave+Tollefson">defensive end Dave
Tollefson</a>. “Everybody wants to say the right things, but we’ve got to win
and we haven’t been.
“I want to find out that we’re in it to win it.”</p>

It’s both fitting and typical for this Giants season filled with
fourth-quarter comebacks that they may have waited until the last possible
moment to attempt to salvage their playoff hopes. They are one game behind
Dallas (7-4) in the NFC East, and with the Cowboys playing at Arizona (4-7)
Sunday they could be two back when the day is over. If that happens, the Cowboys
would be in position to clinch the division when the Giants play at Dallas next
Sunday night.</p>

For the moment, though, the Giants have much bigger problems. They are
reeling from a three-game losing streak that has ruined a 6-2 start and seems to
have heralded yet another second-half collapse. They’ve added defensive end <a title="Osi Umenyiora" href="http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Osi+Umenyiora">Osi
Umenyiora</a> (ankle) to their lengthy injury list, further depleting a
crumbling pass rush, and they could also be without receiver Mario Manningham (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Mario+Manningham)
(knee) in a game where they’ll need all the offense they can get.</p>

That’s because the Packers are the highest-scoring team in the NFL (34.7
points per game) and they’ve won 17 straight games – a streak that began the day
after Christmas last year when they hammered the Giants in Green Bay 45-17. The
Giants, meanwhile, aren’t exactly rolling into this showdown, coming off a 49-24
beat-down in New Orleans on Monday night, a game in which their battered defense
nearly set a franchise record by surrendering 577 yards." Read more...
</p></div><font size="4"><u>NY POST</u></font>
<div><div id="storybody"><div><div>
<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">GIANTS RECEIVER VICTOR CRUZ ON PACE TO BREAK TEAM RECORDS (http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/giants/he_cruzing_along_zj1cBefrJ9WsVD9IuJBFcN)

"Victor Cruz began this season searching for his first NFL reception. He might
end it putting up one of the most prolific seasons ever for a Giants
receiver.<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">

“It’s crazy,’’ Cruz said.</p>

Cruz, as he did last week in New Orleans, will start today against the
Packers, replacing injured Mario Manningham. Cruz has been on a tear lately and
enters the game with team highs in catches (55), receiving yards (957) and
touchdowns (seven). He is on pace for 1,392 receiving yards, which would surpass
the franchise single-season record of 1,343, set by Amani Toomer (/t/Amani_Toomer)in 2002.
</p>“He’s got that beat,’’ tight end<a class="topiclink" href="/t/Jake_Ballard">
Jake Ballard </a>said. “We’ve got five more games left.’’<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">

Cruz said the idea of him amassing 1,000 yards this season never came close
to entering his mind.</p>

“I try not to think about it so I can kind of stay focused,’’ Cruz said.
“Family and friends remind me of it all the time. It’s pretty crazy, man, I
never thought in my second year I’d be approaching a 1,000-yard season and
having all this success. It’s been an adventure.’’</p>

* There is certainly incentive attached to being the first to knock of an
undefeated team. The Packers are 11-0, and whoever pins loss No. 1 on them will
get plenty of attention and accolades. As far as which team will feel the heat,
safety Deon Grant said it’s not the Giants.</p>

* “There should not be any pressure,’’ Grant said. “We lost three straight.
What kind of pressure is that going to be on us? The pressure’s on them, if
anything. They’re trying to continue on with this undefeated season.’’</p>

* Defensive end Justin Tuck said he’s feeling better this
week. Not perfectly healthy, but a bit better. The Giants could use vintage Tuck
and not the facsimile that has been playing hurt this season. Last week against
the Saints, Tuck was credited with four tackles and two quarterback hits. But
after missing a sack on Drew Brees, Tuck admittedly stayed on
the ground and didn’t bother to get up and chase down the play. He levied a fine
against himself for that indiscretion. Defensive coordinator Perry
Fewell said he had a talk with Tuck this week. </p>

“I’m very confident he will come out a different player and be a very good
player come Sunday,’’ Fewell said.</p>

* The Packers are 6-0 on the road this season, the first time that’s happened
in the rich history of the franchise. Including the playoffs, the Packers have
won nine straight on the road. ... Of the 10 previous teams to start a season
11-0, eight advanced to the Super Bowl."</p></div>GIANTS NEED BOUNCEBACK VS. UNBEATEN PACK (http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/giants/giants_need_bounceback_vs_unbeaten_RKxU9kdg7daflRb H8sSadK)
Excerpt: "The season doesn’t end today if the Giants, like everyone else in the NFL
this season, aren’t good enough to beat the unbeaten Packers. The Giants can put
a much better product on the field for their fans at MetLife Stadium than they
did last week in New Orleans and still get clubbed by the mighty right arm of
Aaron Rodgers.<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">

Of course, merely showing up and competing would be a stark upgrade from the
embarrassing and non-competitive slop served up in the 49-24 rout by the Saints,
the third consecutive loss for the free-falling Giants. A full game behind the
first-place Cowboys in the NFC East and at the moment not in position for a
wild-card playoff berth, the Giants (6-5) are reeling as the 11-0 Packers come
roaring in.
</p>“I think we have great character on this team and guys who are very mature
and understand we still have a shot,’’ quarterback Eli Manning (/t/Eli_Manning)said. “We still have to make a good run
and it’s going to matter how we finish this season, how do we do it from here on
out. It doesn’t matter what’s happened the last three weeks or the first three
weeks. We have five games left. How we are going to finish this season is going
to determine how our season goes.’’<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">

How they do this afternoon won’t necessarily determine anything, with two
games remaining with the Cowboys. But what a jolt of confidence it would be if
the Giants found a way to knock off the Packers.</p>

<a href="http://www.nypost.com/blogs/giantsblog" target="_blank">UPDATES FROM

“We definitely know we’re not out of anything, but we know we haven’t put
ourselves in the best possible situation either,’’ safety Antrel Rolle (/t/Antrel_Rolle)said. “We have to go out there with our
minds right, understand they’re a great team. Not taking anything away from
Green Bay, but they can be beat, just like any team in the NFL can be beat.
That’s going to be my mindset today, tomorrow, come Sunday.’’</p>

A look inside the game:</p>


Packers WRs. vs. Giants DBs: Impossible to break down individual matchups
here, as Packers have four receivers (Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, James Jones
and Donald Driver) and one tight end (Jermichael Finley) who all take turns
playing catch with Rodgers. The Giants secondary was confused and
non-competitive last week in New Orleans — cornerbacks Corey Webster (/t/Corey_Webster)and Aaron Ross (/t/Aaron_Ross)at times looked disinterested — and will be
embarrassed today unless there’s a dramatic change in attitude and


There is not enough time to extol the virtues of Rodgers, not enough space to
list all the jaw-dropping stats that underline he’s having one of the most
prolific season of any quarterback in NFL history. The Packers have averaged an
NFL-record 28 points a game in his 58 career starts, and he’s posted a rating of
110 or higher in every game this season. Here’s the best of Rodgers: He wins.
The Super Bowl (/t/Super_Bowl)champion Packers are
on a 17-game winning streak dating back to last season. In that stretch, Rodgers
has thrown 47 touchdown passes and seven interceptions.</p>


After the Giants beat the Patriots in New England, they were leading the NFL
in sacks with 28. Three games later — all losses — the Giants have dropped from
first to sixth in sacks. They have just three in the past three games, including
none against Drew Brees (/t/Drew_Brees)and the
Saints, prompting defensive coordinator Perry Fewell (/t/Perry_Fewell)to blast the guys up front and most
everyone else on the unit. How the defense must find a way without Osi Umenyiora (/t/Osi_Umenyiora)(seven sacks), who
will miss a few games with a sprained ankle. Rodgers has been sacked 27 times
this season.</p>

“It’s definitely going to be hard,’’ Dave Tollefson (/t/Dave_Tollefson)said. “We’ve won games without Osi,
but any time you lose an all-pro guy, it’s not like a practice squad guy got
hurt. Any time you get a little disenchanted, you start maybe feeling bad for
yourself, then you lose your confidence. And confidence is the No. 1 thing for
as a pass rusher. You can’t feel bad for yourself. Let’s get our job done no
matter what it takes. That’s on us personally, not the coaches, not the upper
management, that’s on us.’’</p>


The Packers will be without two starters on their offensive line. Second-year
Marshall Newhouse moves in again for injured Chad Clifton (/t/Chad_Clifton)at left tackle, but the key change is
the loss of the team’s top lineman, Josh Sitton, whose starting streak of 48
games ends because of a knee injury. That means Evan Dietrick-Smith — the guy
who had his arm stomped on by Ndamukong Suh on Thanksgiving — makes his first
NFL start at right guard. Dietrick-Smith is an undrafted second-year player from
Idaho, and the Giants would like to think Linval Joseph (/t/Linval_Joseph)and anyone else on the defensive line
will have an advantage here.</p>


For the first time the Packers will be without their two starting inside
linebackers and leading tacklers, Desmond Bishop and A.J. Hawk. Neither has
missed a game this season — Hawk hasn’t missed a game in his six-year career —
but both are hurt with calf injuries. With the return of Ahmad Bradshaw, can the
Giants rediscover their rushing attack against fill-in linebackers Robert
Francois (weak in coverage) and undersized rookie D.J. Smith?</p>


There seems to be sentiment that an upset is brewing, but sometimes reality
bites. The Giants on defense haven’t put the hammer down much all season, and
you can’t hit what you can’t catch. Maybe Aaron Rodgers (/t/Aaron_Rodgers)is due for a down day. We’ll believe
it when we see it.</p>

PACKERS 34, GIANTS 26" </p></div>MESSAGE TO CHAMPS SHOULD BE: WINCE, LOMBARDI (http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/giants/message_to_champs_should_be_wince_pKpNAzNnv0WdYKG3 vr96mN)

Excerpt: "The Giants today try to show they can rise up off the canvas and fight, for
60 minutes this time, all of them. They try to stiff-arm their latest
second-half collapse and begin one last desperate push for the NFC East title.

They try to show they are not Big Blue Marshmallows. They try to chase Aaron Rodgers (/t/Aaron_Rodgers)from here to Lambeau
Field, and hit him and every cheesehead every chance they get along the way.

They try to rally around Eli Manning, hope Ahmad Bradshaw (/t/Ahmad_Bradshaw)can be their Willis Reed. They try
to derail this perfect green-and-gold train chugging towards history and the
Holy Grail trophy that is named after the greatest coach in NFL
history.</p>Wince, Lombardi.<div style="BORDER-BOTTOM: medium none; TEXT-ALIGN: left; BORDER-LEFT: medium none; BACKGROUND-COLOR: #ffffff; COLOR: #000000; OVERFLOW: hidden; BORDER-TOP: medium none; BORDER-RIGHT: medium none; TEXT-DECORATION: none">

Winning isn’t everything today for the Giants. But it is the only thing that
can repair their fragile psyches at a time when another season stands teetering
on the brink and careers, from Tom Coughlin’s on down, are at stake.</p>

So they need to play with pride and passion again, and be tough guys again
whose shoulder pads thud with force loud enough for Ray Nitschke (/t/Ray_Nitschke)to hear up in Titletown heaven and tap
his boisterous gap-toothed neighbor on the shoulder and warn:</p>

Wince, Lombardi.</p>

This is a day for the New York Football Giants to earn their paychecks. This
is a day for them to stop cheating their fans, their owners and themselves.</p>

They shocked the world by shocking<a class="topiclink" href="/t/Tom_Brady"> Tom
Brady </a>and a Patriots team that had won 18 in a row, on a neutral site.</p>

They will need to play the Superfect game for the Superfect Upset that would
shock the world and a world-beater quarterback who has won 17 in a row —
starting with 45-17 over the 2010 Giants — with all of New York watching.</p>

They will need Manning to shoot it out with Rodgers if need be and a maniacal
defense that should be driven to show defensive coordinator Perry Fewell (/t/Perry_Fewell)that there are no quitters in their

This isn’t about Manning ($8.5 million salary) or Jason Pierre-Paul
($475,000). It isn’t about<a class="topiclink" href="/t/Mathias_Kiwanuka"> Mathias
Kiwanuka </a>($1.75 million), Hakeem Nicks ($575,000), Victor Cruz ($450,000),
or Jake Ballard ($450,000). It isn’t about Justin Tuck ($3.45 million), even if
he hasn’t been Tuck because his body won’t let him be. It isn’t about Ahmad
Bradshaw ($1.5 million) or Michael Boley ($3.5 million) or Linval Joseph
($425,000) or<a class="topiclink" href="/t/Dave_Tollefson"> Dave Tollefson
</a>($685,000) or the rookie linebackers ($375,000 apiece) or Lawrence Tynes (/t/Lawrence_Tynes)($1.2 million).</p>

This is about too many of the others who ought to return their last two game

The buck stops here.</p>

How about Brandon Jacobs ($2.9 million) running over Packers the way he ran
over Roman Harper (/t/Roman_Harper)in the Superdome
behind Kareem McKenzie ($4.3 million) or David Diehl ($4 million) or David Baas
($1 million) or Kevin Boothe ($1 million) or Chris Snee ($950,000)?</p>

How about Corey Webster (/t/Corey_Webster)($5
million), Aaron Ross ($1.274 million), Prince Amukamara ($375,000), Kenny
Phillips.($722,500), Antrel Rolle..($1.25 million) or Deon Grant.($910,000)
covering Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, James Jones, Donald Driver or Jermichael
Finley a whole lot better than they covered any of the Saints?</p>

How about Steve Weatherford ($700,000) being alert when they call off a fake

How about Tuck, Tollefson, Kiwanuka, Chris Canty ($5.25 million) and JPP
terrorizing the quarterback again?</p>

How about some Parcellsian motivation from Coughlin and his aides? </p>

I received an email from a disenchanted Giants fan who closed by writing: “As
someone who owns 4 psl’s 2 mezzanine and 2 club this has become a business and
the losses hurt more when we have so much money tied up.”</p>

“Let’s, as a group of fans and players, just give everything we got on
Sunday, and whatever happens, happens,” Tollefson said.</p>

But you feel confident you guys will do your part?</p>

“Yeah, hell yeah,” Tollefson said. “If we don’t, get us out of here. Boo us,
if we don’t.”</p>

If you don’t what?</p>

“If we don’t give what we can,” Tollefson said. “If they see something out
there they don’t like, they paid for the ticket — let us know they don’t like
it.”
<font size="4"><u>THE BERGEN RECORD</u></font>
GIANTS - PACKERS MATCHUP (http://www.northjersey.com/sports/pro_sports/football/134982833_Giants-Packers_matchup.html)

"At MetLife Stadium, Today, 4:15<div id="storybody">

TV: Ch. 5; Radio: WFAN-AM 660</p>

Line: Packers by 6</p>

What’s at stake?</p>

Giants: A chance to save their spiraling season. The Giants could "shock the
world" as Justin Tuck put it and right a second half that has turned ugly with
three straight losses. But the Giants will have to fix a defense that left Perry
Fewell ranting and Michael Strahan giving a pep talk to the defensive line.
Ahmad Bradshaw expects to return to boost a running game that ranks last in
yards per game (82.3) and yards per carry (3.18). Michael Boley likely will
return after missing two games to bolster a struggling linebacking corps. Eli
Manning again will have to carry the offense in what expects to be a shootout,
although WR Mario Manningham (knee) likely will not play.</p>

Packers: The opportunity to clinch a playoff berth as well as to continue an
undefeated season. Green Bay has won 17 straight and boasts MVP frontrunner
Aaron Rodgers, who is on pace for a record-breaking campaign (71.8 completion
percentage, 3,475 yards, 33 TDs, four INTs, 127.7 passer rating).</p>

The Packers also rank first in scoring (34.7 points per game), fourth in
total offense (401.3 yards per game) and employ an aggressive, gambling defense
that leads the league in INTs (22), but is prone to big plays (31st in passing
yards, 287.8). CB Charles Woodson (second in the NFL with six INTs) and Westwood (/westwood) native B.J. Raji also will give the Giants
trouble. On offense, WRs Greg Jennings and Jordy Nelson (a combined 102
receptions, 1,617 yards, 17 TDs) will test Corey Webster and Aaron Ross.</p>

Key matchup</p>

Giants DE Jason Pierre-Paul vs. Packers LT Marshall Newhouse</p>

Give credit where credit is due: Pierre-Paul leads the Giants with 10 1/2
sacks and has shown more hustle than his teammates. This game falls on his
shoulders more than any other Giant, except Manning. If he and an ailing Tuck
don’t get pressure on Rodgers – especially with Osi Umenyiora (sprained ankle)
out– the Giants face another embarrassment like they did in New
</p></div>How they’ll win<div id="storybody">

Giants: If the suddenly invisible Giants’ pass rush doesn’t find its groove
(just one sack the past two games), Rodgers will cut them apart just like Drew
Brees did. Fewell promised they would get after his "." Manning has to
avoid the four interceptions he threw last December in Green Bay’s 45-17
victory. Bradshaw needs to give the offense a spark and help the Giants keep the
ball out of Rodgers’ hands as much as possible. And Webster, Ross and the
linebackers need to keep up with the Packers’ many weapons.</p>

Packers: Rodgers aims to pick apart the Giants’ secondary. Woodson and the
aggressive defense will look to create turnovers. But Green Bay will be without
linebackers A.J. Hawk and Desmond Bishop due to calf injuries."</p>

— Jeff Roberts</p>

MANNING'S LEADERSHIP A KEY IN BIG GAME VS. PACKERS (http://www.northjersey.com/sports/pro_sports/football/Mannings_leadership_a_key_in_big_game_vs_Green_Bay .html)</p>

"The text messages came from a mysterious number, leaving no clue as to who
was behind them.</p>

</p><div id="storybody">

The anonymous ridicule was directed at Jake Ballard, criticizing him last
month for a rather stoic appearance on ESPN.</p>

But even more jarring than the texts was the culprit behind them, the Giants’
second-year tight end soon would discover: A Super Bowl MVP. An elite
quarterback. And a noted vanilla interview in his own right, the publicly
reserved Eli Manning.</p>

“Him telling me to show more emotion?” Ballard asked. “Then he made fun of me
for saying what he told us on the last drive [of the victory over the Patriots].
I might have added something he probably didn’t say.</p>

“But I’m just adding to ‘Eli, The Legend.’ ”</p>

Ballard doesn’t need to embellish.</p>

Manning is doing fine writing his own legacy this season — on the field, as a
leader and as the team’s occasional source of comedic relief.</p>

He has been unfazed by the challenges facing him in 2011, putting together a
career year despite an offense with a young receiving corps, a rebuilt,
struggling line and the utter lack of a running game.</p>

“It’s never going to be easy,” Manning said.</p>

Although most of the attention today will be focused on Aaron Rodgers and his
record-breaking season as the Packers (11-0) visit the Meadowlands, lost is just
how well Manning has played.</p><div id="storybody">

If the Giants (6-5) are going to turn around what appears to be their latest
second-half swoon following three straight losses, it will be Manning who leads

“He expects to be great,” Ballard said. “I think that’s what sets him apart.
He wants to be the top quarterback in the game. I think that has to do with him
coming from a football family, watching his dad [Archie] playing and his brother
[Peyton] playing.</p>

“He wants his number retired when he retires. And the
way he’s been going, it will be.”
The questions that hung over Manning in
training camp have long been answered.</p>

Yes, Manning is elite. Yes, he’s a leader. No, he doesn’t need Steve Smith or
Kevin Boss.</p>

Packers coach Mike McCarthy has been “very impressed.”</p>

“He’s an experienced champion,” he said.</p>

Manning has thrown for 3,358 yards, putting him on pace to surpass 4,000 for
the third time – no other Giant quarterback has done so more than once.</p>

And one season after leading the NFL with 25 interceptions – including four
in last December’s 45-17 loss to the Packers — he has just 10 in 11 games with
20 touchdown passes.</p>

“The interceptions bothered him personally, professionally,” offensive
coordinator Kevin Gilbride said.</p>

Manning, 30, is on pace to set career highs in passing yards (a projected
4,884), passer rating (95.6) and yards per pass (8.4), and his completion
percentage (62.9) would tie a previous best.</p><div id="storybody">

And while Drew Brees got the attention last week in the Saints’ 49-24
victory, Manning threw for 400 yards for the second time (406) and completed 33
of 47 passes — including 21 consecutive at one point, shattering the team

He also has been clutch, leading the Giants to five fourth-quarter victories
when they were tied or trailed.
But it’s not just his play on the field.</p>

Manning runs two weekly meetings himself, one with running backs and another
with receivers, designing the film clip packages that are shown. Gilbride and
quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan call him an extension of the coaching

“It’s what he does, but almost as importantly, how he does it,” Sullivan

Gilbride is “proud” of Manning for being a “catalyst” in the development of
Ballard and Victor Cruz.</p>

“I’m the guy who’s been here eight years. I feel it’s my responsibility to be
a mentor,” Manning said. “You always try to make guys think on every play they
have a great chance to get the ball.”</p>

But he does more than that.</p>

In September, Manning quietly approached Cruz and delivered a boost of
confidence. The receiver had made a drive-killing drop in the season-opening
loss to Washington, and three days later, the Giants signed Brandon Stokley.</p>

Cruz – who had no career catches at that point — said the talk was

“He said, ‘You’re a big-play guy. We know that,’” said Cruz, who leads the
team in receptions (55) and yards (957). “He just kept me upbeat, man. It was
definitely good for my young career to hear a guy like that let me know that I
was good.”
</div></div></div></div><u><font size="4">NY TIMES</font></u>
IS IT BAD STRATEGY FOR FANS TO BOO? (http://fifthdown.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/12/04/is-it-bad-strategy-for-fans-to-boo/?ref=football)

"In a little bit of turnabout, Giants and Jets fans have been booed
recently.<div id="entry-89581" class="post-89581 post type-post status-publish format-standard hentry category-uncategorized tag-giants tag-jets-packers entry "><div class="entry-content">

Giants running back Brandon Jacobs <a href="http://sportsradiointerviews.com/2011/11/28/brandon-jacobs-new-york-giants-brandon-jacobs-stands-by-his-comments-about-the-fans/#more-50709">voiced
his displeasure about jeers:</a></p>
<div class="w75 left">http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/blogs_v3/fifthdown/teams/giants75.jpg (http://fifthdown.blogs.nytimes.com/tag/giants/)</div>

“We go out there and give our all. We practice hard every day; we do our best
to go out there and win and give our fans a good show. We don’t want to hear
that. We don’t want to hear anybody, as we’re trying to work hard and overcome
adversity already, and they make it even harder to overcome adversity when they
do things like that. As a player we don’t want to hear that.”</p></blockquote>

Jets safety Jim Leonhard, in an interview with WFAN earlier this week,<a href="http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/jets/post/_/id/9225/leonhard-boos-fans-for-booing-sanchez">
was unhappy about the booing of Mark Sanchez</a> before last Sunday’s game
against the Bills:</p>
<div class="w75 left">http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/blogs_v3/fifthdown/teams/jets75.jpg (http://fifthdown.blogs.nytimes.com/tag/jets/)</div>

“I think we have a great crowd. I think probably for one of the first times,
I was kind of disappointed. Our starting quarterback gets booed in
“As players, you kind of turn to each other and say, ‘You know
what? I guess we’re in this one today by ourselves. We can’t rely on the crowd
to give us that energy because it’s already started off on a bad note.’
“So I
will say that this past weekend was really the first time that I’ve been kind of
frustrated going into a game, which is bad.”</p></blockquote>

Brian Bassett of The Jets blog <a href="http://www.thejetsblog.com/page/3/">said fans were making a

“I’m sure there will be those who will protest Leonhard’s comments and say he
has no business talking or it was a motivational ploy or what have you, but he
does bring up a valid point. The last thing the players need to hear is booing,
especially before the game, whether it be for a single player or the whole team.
The crowd serves as an extra energy source for the players and, as we have seen
time and time again, has the ability to shift momentum.”</p></blockquote>

Of course, It should be mentioned that:
1) <a href="http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2008/07/new_york_giants_making_their_f.html">It
costs more to attend</a> a game at MetLife Stadium than it used to at Giants
Stadium, in some instances quite a bit more.
2) Booing is not exactly new in
these parts.
3) It’s usually not a good idea<a href="http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2010/12/antrel_rolles_comments_call_fo.html">
for players to tell fans when they can boo. </a></p>

But is booing before a game simply a case of bad strategy — if in fact you
want your team to win?</p>

Then again, if fans knew it was hurting their team, maybe they would still
boo; something else is probably at work here.</p>

If you doubt the power of boos and cheers, read the opening and ending
passages of <a href="http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1192474/1/index.htm">this
recent Sports Illustrated cover article on sports in America.

Extra point A few things seem to be coming together today
for the Giants. They desperately need a victory; the Packers don’t. The Giants’
defenders were embarrassed in their last game, and <a href="http://www.northjersey.com/sports/Perry_Fewell_reaches_boiling_point_with_Giants_def ense.html">their
toughness and effort were challenged by their coordinator. </a>Ahmad Bradshaw
may be back. And as Sam Borden points out, <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/04/sports/football/the-giants-have-history-as-spoilers-against-unbeaten-teams.html?ref=sports">it’s
not as if they haven’t pulled off this kind of stunner before</a>. Is anyone
willing to call an upset over the
<u><font size="4">GIANTS 101</font></u>
GIANTS VS. PACKERS: NFL WEEK 13 GAME PREVIEW (http://www.giants101.com/2011/12/03/new-york-giants-vs-green-bay-packers-nfl-week-13-game-preview/)

"Coming off of three straight losses, it doesn't get any easier tomorrow
afternoon for the New York (http://www.giants101.com/tag/new-york/) Giants when they host the undefeated <a class="st_tag internal_tag" title="Posts tagged with Green Bay Packers" href="http://www.giants101.com/tag/green-bay-packers/" rel="tag nofollow">Green
Bay Packers</a> at MetLife Stadium. After their embarrassing Monday night loss
in New Orleans, the Giants seemed dejected. Tom Coughlin and his team agreed
that the preparation was great all week, with everyone working hard and on the
same page – but the product on the field was the complete opposite.

This week, there has been less talk from the players, and more of an attitude
of "we just need to get a win". Defensive coordinator Perry Fewell on the other
hand, had a lot to say – calling out his players for a lack of fight against New

So the stage is set. A sputtering Giants team in need of a win to get back on
track in the NFC East and Wild Card races, against the dominant defending
champions who are looking to lock up the NFC North.</p>


[b]Make limiting big plays on defense the #1

The Giants can ill afford to get into a shootout with a team that's clicking
on all cylinders like Green Bay is. You got proof of that just a few days ago in
New Orleans.</p>

The Giants could not force Drew Brees into dinking and dunking the football (http://www.giants101.com/tag/football/),
but instead gave up eight plays of over 20 yards in one football (http://www.giants101.com/tag/football/)
game. New York (http://www.giants101.com/tag/new-york/)
knows it can't have this happen on Sunday. The Packers are going to score – but
the Giants need to make sure they aren't allowing big strikes over the top, and
more importantly – they absolutely have to finish their tackles in this

If New York (http://www.giants101.com/tag/new-york/)
can limit the big plays for the Green Bay offense, this game will become
shorter, there will be less pressure on the offense, and the Giants won't find
themselves having to battle back from 2+ possessions down at the start of the
fourth quarter. If Green Bay is hitting 20 and 30 yard plays regularly in the
first two quarters – this game will start looking very similar to Monday night
by the third quarter.</p>

Take advantage of the Packers aggressiveness in the secondary
with double moves and play action</p>

One thing we know about the Packers defense is that they take chances in the
secondary – and in turn they make, but also give up big plays. Look for the
Giants to use Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks on several double move patterns down
the football (http://www.giants101.com/tag/football/)
field in an attempt to get easy points on the scoreboard in this game.</p>

Charles Woodson may be the most aggressive defensive back in the unit,
showing a tendency to not only look to guess and jump intermediate routes, but
also to attack the line of scrimmage against the run. The Giants will likely
look to draw a hesitation out of Woodson and get a big play in behind him if
they can get a few good chunks of yardage out of the running game early in this

Get physical with <a class="st_tag internal_tag" title="Posts tagged with Aaron Rodgers" href="http://www.giants101.com/tag/aaron-rodgers/" rel="tag nofollow">Aaron
Rodgers</a> at every opportunity possible</p>

Look, <a class="st_tag internal_tag" title="Posts tagged with Aaron Rodgers" href="http://www.giants101.com/tag/aaron-rodgers/" rel="tag nofollow">Aaron
Rodgers</a> has seen it all. Press man, cover-3, zone blitzes, overloads –
regardless, he's torched every single defensive unit he has faced this season.
The only way to knock a quarterback like this out of rhythm is to hit him, hit
him, and hit him again. Forget the sacks for a minute, if the Giants have a
split second to put a shot on Rodgers after he releases the football (http://www.giants101.com/tag/football/) –
they better put that shot on him and make sure it hurts. If this intimidating New York (http://www.giants101.com/tag/new-york/)
defensive front can get a few good hits on Rodgers in the first half – it will
go a long way to keeping this Green Bay offense under control.</p>


They get a dominant effort out of their pass rush and can avoid trading
touchdowns for field goals when they get down into Packers territory. My biggest
concern with the Giants offense as of late is its ability to move the ball up
and down the field – but not come out with touchdowns. On defense, the Giants
are built on getting to the quarterback with the front four. If the Giants
continue to struggle to get pressure as they have over the past month – the
result will likely be the same, a loss.</p>

BIG GAME CANDIDATE – [i]QB <a class="st_tag internal_tag" title="Posts tagged with Eli Manning" href="http://www.giants101.com/tag/eli-manning/" rel="tag nofollow">Eli

You think <a class="st_tag internal_tag" title="Posts tagged with Eli Manning" href="http://www.giants101.com/tag/eli-manning/" rel="tag nofollow">Eli
Manning</a> is a little annoyed with hearing about <a class="st_tag internal_tag" title="Posts tagged with Aaron Rodgers" href="http://www.giants101.com/tag/aaron-rodgers/" rel="tag nofollow">Aaron
Rodgers</a> being the greatest thing since sliced bread all week? Manning is the
true leader of this Giants football (http://www.giants101.com/tag/football/) team, and has carried a group depleted by
injuries, with a struggling running game and inconsistent defense to a chance to
win their division. You put an average quarterback behind center on this Giants
team and they might not have 4 wins at this point.</p>

You know Manning has been studying this defense, a defense that can be beat
through the air, very carefully this week – and I expect to see #10 come out
fired up (in his own <a class="st_tag internal_tag" title="Posts tagged with Eli Manning" href="http://www.giants101.com/tag/eli-manning/" rel="tag nofollow">Eli
Manning</a> fired up kind of a way) and play another excellent game.</p>


I think you're going to see a very fired up Giants football (http://www.giants101.com/tag/football/)
team this Sunday afternoon. I expect the defense to leave it all out there, and
the Giants offense has a chance to hit some big plays on this Green Bay defense
and I think they will put an emphasis on doing so.</p>

That said, unless the pass rush completely dominates the Packers offensive
line, it is going to be very tough for the Giants to get in the way of what
Green Bay is doing on offense this season. It's hard to see everything coming
together at once for the Giants this week.</p>

Packers 31, Giants 21"</p><u><font size="4">BIG BLUE VIEW
CAN LIGHTNING STRIKE AGAIN? GIANTS HOPE SO (http://www.bigblueview.com/2011/12/4/2607956/can-lightning-strike-again-giants-hope-so)

"Dec. 13, 1998. The 5-8 New York Giants (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/teams/new-york-giants) vs.
the 13-0 Denver Broncos (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/teams/denver-broncos) at
Giants Stadium. Final score: Giants 20, Broncos 16.
<div class="entry-body">

If you are old enough
to remember that game you know that no one gave the Giants a chance to beat the
mighty Broncos, who would go on after that to finish the season 14-2 and win the
Super Bowl. Lightning struck, though, when the hardly immortal Kent Graham
heaved a 37-yard touchdown pass to Amani Toomer (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/2258/amani-toomer)
with less than two minutes to play, giving the Giants an improbable 20-16

Feb. 3, 2008, Super Bowl XLII. The <a class="sbn-auto-link" href="http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/teams/new-england-patriots">New England
Patriots</a> enter 18-0, fully expecting to finish a perfect season with a Super
Bowl title. Final score: Giants 17, New England 14.</p>

The Giants have cut down Goliath before. Can they do it again today? </p>
<p class="extend-divide"><a name="storyjump"></a>http://cdn1.sbnation.com/images/blog/star-divide.v5e9d7f1.jpg</p>

Forgetting the Super Bowl for now, probably the more apt comparison is the
1998 game against the Denver Broncos. It occurred at a similar point in the
season, with the down-trodden Giants not given much of a chance against the
mighty Broncos of John Elway, Terrell Davis, Shannon Sharpe and Co. </p>

Sure the Giants had Toomer, Tiki Barber (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/2205/tiki-barber) and
<a class="sbn-auto-link" href="http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/2257/michael-strahan">Michael
Strahan</a>. It was early in the careers of those players, though, and -- aside
from Strahan -- they had not become the stars they would be in later years.</p>

That day Graham outplayed Elway, going 21-of-33 for 265 yards and two scores,
while Elway went only 19-of-36 for 180 yards and interception.</p>

The Giants used that game, which turned into their second straight victory,
as a springboard to finish the season with four straight wins and wind up

We know this Giants' team is not as good as the Packers (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/teams/green-bay-packers)' team
that will be on other sideline Sunday afternoon. Can this Giants team, with
vastly superior talent on offense than that 1998 team had -- Eli Manning (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/2235/eli-manning), Hakeem Nicks (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/71294/hakeem-nicks),
Victor Cruz (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/109584/victor-cruz) --
pull off a shocker like that 1998 team did, though? Can it, at least, play well
in this game and come away with some positive momentum heading into the
season-defining final four games?</p>

That, likely, is what everyone connected with the Giants is hoping. That, win
or lose, the team can get its groove back in this game against the best team in
the le

12-04-2011, 12:07 PM
Thanks RF
Fondue the cheese heads!

12-04-2011, 12:10 PM
13-0 Broncos, 18-0 Patriots, whose next?

Giants defense hopefully kept in mind that Rodgers can be a mobile QB.

Eli Manning should understand he needs to play mistake-free football on the offense for the team to be able to win against top tier opponents.

Whose hasn't been on the Victor Cruz bandwagon? All aboard!

12-04-2011, 12:22 PM
thanks Roanoke! </P>

the Giants can stop this streak by the pack!</P>

at any rate, hope for a great game and no injuries.</P>