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NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: SUNDAY, DECEMBER 25, 2011 - 1:40 P.M.

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  • NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: SUNDAY, DECEMBER 25, 2011 - 1:40 P.M.

    HERE NOW THE NEWS

    THE DATA WILL UPDATE THROUGHOUT THE DAY AND SHOW THE UPDATE TIME IN THE HEADER.

    MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL


    NEWARK STAR LEDGER

    GIANTS PROUDLY DISPLAY THEIR SUPER BOWL LOGOS AFTER JETS COVER THEM UP

    "Lawrence Tynes came into MetLife Stadium and saw the black curtains the Jets had put up to cover the Giants’ Super Bowl logos painted outside
    their locker room. So he ripped one down. Jets defensive lineman Marcus Dixon
    walked by and put it back up.


    After the
    Giants’ 29-14 victory
    today, Tynes decided he had to “bring the muscle” with
    him to get them all down.




    He, offensive lineman David Diehl and long snapper Zak DeOssie tore them all
    down, with Diehl exclaiming, “This is Giants Stadium!”




    It’s MetLife Stadium, not JetLife Stadium or Giants Stadium. But at that
    point, no one was arguing.




    “Why cover them up? This is our locker room,” Tynes said. “I’m not going to
    sit here and say this is our stadium, but for the next year it is.”




    That’s when punter Steve Weatherford, a former Jet, chimed in with a “Yes,
    sir!”






    Having their Super Bowl logos covered up was the last straw for the
    Giants.




    “This game was about respect,” Diehl said. “It was a lot more than just us,
    this team and this year. It’s about our organization, our history, our
    tradition.




    “Walking in here today we knew we were the away team, but to have all our
    logos blocked, all the trophies this organization’s won and everything we stand
    for. We all saw it as a sign of disrespect.”




    Giants president and CEO John Mara said the Jets “do that all the time. We
    don’t cover theirs.”




    Yeah, well, this wasn’t the first time the Jets antagonized their
    co-tenants.




    “We’ve heard all the talking, they’re our big brother, this is their stadium
    and all those things,” Diehl said.




    “We never let that waver our strategy and the way we played this game and,
    most importantly, we used that for motivation going into this one.




    “It’s not about what you say, it’s not about what you tell the media. It’s
    about going out there, executing, winning this game and doing it on the football
    field. I think we did that.”




    Coming into the game, for the first time in Giants history,
    the team had allowed five straight opponents to convert 50 percent or more of
    their third downs. That came to a screeching halt today, as the Giants converted
    only 4 of their 21 third downs, a 19-percent rate.




    Instead of trying to give “complex” looks that had confused the Giants more
    than their opponents, defensive coordinator Perry Fewell kept it simple and told
    his guys to make plays.




    “Don’t give up on us,” CB Aaron Ross said. “We have great personnel. Coach
    put together a great game plan and we never stopped believing in each other. We
    know what we can do and showed it today.”




    Mara senses how the confidence of his teams and fans needed
    a boost, especially since the Giants seemed to be in another tailspin in the
    second half of their season. He believes this victory provided it.




    “It reinvigorates this franchise and our players and gives them something to
    play for,” he said. “And it’s good for our fans. Our fans needed this game.”




    The Giants-Cowboys matchup next Sunday at MetLife Stadium,
    which will determine the NFC East title, was moved from 1 p.m. to 8:20 p.m.




    The teams’ Dec. 11 game resulted in the fifth-highest overnight rating in
    Sunday Night Football history."

    GIANTS VS. JETS: PLAXICO BURRESS BOTTLED UP BY FORMER TEAMMATES

    Excerpt: "Plaxico
    Burress said last week
    he hoped to catch one, two, and maybe three or four
    touchdowns against his former team.



    But the only time the Jets receiver
    found the end zone in today’s 29-14
    loss
    to the Giants, the 23-yard
    touchdown catch was called back because of his offensive pass interference
    penalty.




    “They have been making that call more than ever this season it seems like,”
    Burress said. “He made the call, I thought it was a bad call. The guy from the
    back made it, the back judge, not the referee in front of it, so that’s how that
    goes.”




    Burress had a relatively quiet day, catching just three passes for 34 yards —
    all in the first half. Burress said his former Giants teammates made sure he
    didn’t beat them.

    “They know me, I think they know what kind of player I am,” Burress said. “I
    think they were wary of me going down the field and making plays and they
    weren’t going to let it happen. We had a couple times in the second quarter
    where I caught the ball out of bounds or caught in some single coverages, but
    for the most part, they were just really playing a lot of double on the outside.
    They really weren’t going to let me get into a groove.”


    Burress, who played four seasons for the Giants before being sent to prison
    for nearly two years for shooting himself, was made the Jets’ lone game-day
    captain — a familiar motivational tactic by coach Rex Ryan. Burress called it an
    “honor” and a “privilege,” though the loss ultimately brought disappointment to
    the day.




    “I just wanted to win the game, it didn’t matter who we were playing,”
    Burress said. “We needed to get this to get to the playoffs.” Read more...

    Video: Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan after game Press Conference after
    29-14 loss to Giants


    GIANTS' DEFENSE HOLDS OFF JETS IN KEY FOURTH QUARTER, CAPPOMG A STRONG AFTERNOON

    Excerpt: "
    The pendulum had swung dramatically in the Jets’ favor in a matter of minutes. Down
    20-14 with 2:24 on the clock, the Jets somehow had the ball with a chance to win
    the game.


    In a season checkered with anemic defensive play, the Giants needed the defense, predicated on
    the recently inconsistent pass rush, to come through.




    And with their season hanging in the balance, the defensive front came
    through.




    First, defensive end Justin Tuck applied the pressure, bullying Wayne Hunter
    into Mark Sanchez, and forcing the quarterback to hold the ball longer than he
    wanted. He tried to scramble, but defensive tackle Chris Canty got to him in the
    end zone and the referees ruled forward progress had stopped there. A sack and
    safety. Just like that, the game was all but over.




    It was the exclamation point on a game in which a resurrected Tuck and the
    rest of the defensive line wreaked havoc on Sanchez all day long — and on a week
    in which Tuck battled through a painful toe injury at practice.




    “He played his way and he practiced like that last week,” coach Tom Coughlin
    said of Tuck, who has battled through various injuries all season.




    “He didn’t miss a snap and he went hard. He decided not to be concerned with
    the little nicks that he had that were very bothersome to him. He decided to go
    the other way with them and basically ignore them and that is how he played.”

    Tuck’s play throughout the
    29-14 win
    — he also registered a 6-yard sack of his own early in the third
    quarter and applied the initial pressure that led to a Dave Tollefson 4-yard
    sack on third down with slightly more than five minutes remaining — energized
    the recently feeble pass rush.


    Tuck’s revival was complimented by Jason Pierre-Paul’s two sacks, which have
    become routine of late. In all, the Giants sacked Sanchez five times, along with
    issuing a number of other hits the third-year quarterback took.




    “That’s huge because that’s where we start out in terms of building this
    defense: getting pressure on the quarterback,” linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka
    said." Read more...



    JETS KNOW ALL ABOUT GIANTS' VICTOR CRUZ AFTER LOSS



    Excerpt: "In the end, Antonio Cromartie said there was nothing to all the talk.
    Supremacy in the New Jersey/New York area means nothing right now.




    “I really couldn’t give a damn about that,” he said. “It’s about trying to
    get our team to the playoffs, and do the things that we need to do.”




    But through the week, the ill will between the Jets' secondary and the Giants' receiving corps festered. Pride was
    placed in the balance. Victor Cruz said teams weren’t afraid
    of Darrelle Revis anymore.
    Revis said he’d never heard of the Giants
    receiver — who finished with 164 yards and a touchdown on three catches today —
    outside of the preseason. Cromartie begged the Giants to throw deep and said
    nothing good happens to opposing wide outs that say negative things about the
    Jets secondary.




    After a
    29-14 loss
    , though, clarity was provided when Eli Manning hit Cruz with 2:12
    left in the first half and the receiver darted straight through two tackles. The
    Jets Cover-2 defense was designed to have Kyle Wilson in man coverage. Cromartie
    came over to help. They both watched Cruz
    sprint the 99 yards for the score
    , swinging the momentum and sinking what
    had been a solid game against a top-tier quarterback.




    Safety Brodney Pool said the coverage was rolled away from Cruz’s side.




    “Well, when (Eli Manning) threw it into double coverage, it was pretty
    demoralizing,” Rex Ryan said. “They had 80 yards up until that point, if that.
    We had it in control.” Read more...

    GIANTS VS. JETS: VICTOR CRUZ'S 99 YARD TD GIVES GIANTS MOMENTUM

    "Victor Cruz didn’t know he was going to record the longest play in Giants history until he hurdled over a two
    Jets defensive backs at the 12-yard line and saw acres of green — in the form of
    grass and not Jets players — in front of
    him.


    Eighty-seven yards later, he was performing his signature salsa dance to the
    chants of “Cruuuuuuz” and the game — and perhaps the entire Giants season — had
    undergone a complete 180.




    For the entire first half, the Giants had struggled to move the ball, both on
    the ground and in the air. But the play, which gave them a 10-7 led just before
    halftime, also gave them a sense of life going into the second half on the way
    to a
    29-14 win.




    “I think it changed it a lot,” Cruz said of the play’s effect on the game’s
    momentum. “We weren’t moving the ball very well early on in the game and we
    needed a big play to come up to change the momentum of the game. I was just
    happy I could do that for my team.”




    This week, Jets shutdown cornerback Darrelle Revis claimed he didn’t know who
    Cruz was. Perhaps he and the rest of the Jets do now.

    “Backed up like that, you never think a play is going to happen like that
    where somebody takes it the distance 99 yards, we just have to be better,” Revis
    said. “There were some missed tackles, we just have to get the guy on the
    ground. We failed to do that and he went storming down the sidelines for 99
    yards.”


    It was the kind of game-changing play Cruz has been manufacturing all season
    for a Giants offense that has relied on long gains to move the ball. Since
    emerging as a go-to target for Eli Manning in Week 3 when he caught three passes
    for 110 yards and three touchdowns against the Philadelphia Eagle’s vaunted
    secondary, Cruz has established himself as one of the league’s top big-play
    threats this season. With Steve Smith signing with the Eagles in the offseason
    and Mario Manningham battling through injuries all season, Cruz’s emergence
    after spending last season on the practice squad has been vital to the Giants
    offense.




    “We had some issues obviously with our receiving corps and I thought he was
    the one guy that could give us that kind of play and he certainly did give us
    that kind of play,” coach Tom Coughlin said. “He almost earlier did the same
    kind of thing so we all got a tremendous lift when he went coast to coast.”




    Today, Cruz added three
    receptions and 164 yards
    , giving him 1,358 this season to break Amani
    Toomer’s Giants single-season record of 1,343 yards set in 2002.




    “It’s crazy,” Cruz said of breaking the mark. “Just coming where I’m from and
    coming through what I went through, it’s just been surreal for me. I’m just
    happy my teammates have been behind me and my coaches believed in me.”

    MARK SANCHEZ HAS A LONG, BUSY DAY IN LOSS TO GIANTS

    Excerpt: "It took LaDainian Tomlinson a few reminders to fully comprehend the final
    statistics — 19 touches between himself and Shonn Greene. Fifty-nine attempts
    from Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez, 15
    more passes than he’s ever thrown in an NFL game before.


    “That’s a lot of throwing the football,” Tomlinson said. “But we didn’t
    execute obviously throwing it, so that’s why we probably ended up losing the
    game.”




    He admitted that questioning the play calls was a fruitless exercise.




    “You start saying, ‘Well, we need to run the ball’ or whatever it may be,”
    Tomlinson said, “and you get affected by throwing the ball.”




    But on the sore end of a
    29-14 loss
    to the Giants in front of
    79,088 today, it was still difficult to swallow.




    “I was a little surprised; these last few weeks we’ve really picked it up
    running the football and did well at it,” Tomlinson said. “I was a bit surprised
    that we didn’t run it a little bit more.”




    Instead, the game fell on the shoulders of Sanchez, who finished with 258
    yards, a touchdown, two interceptions and a costly fumble on the goal line that
    he shared the blame for with center Nick Mangold." Read more...

    D'ALESSANDRO: JETS' REX RYAN MAY HAVE CAUSED TROUBLE AGAINST GIANTS WITH BIG TALK

    Excerpt: "He left the field with scars that won’t even be noticed in his mirror this
    morning, and he probably won’t notice the pitchforks that will track his every
    step into the postseason. But the rest of us ended our day asking one thing
    about Rex Ryan today: What will he learn from this interesting experience?


    He is a terrific football coach, but to fully understand him, you probably
    have to play for him. Yet there’s a problem with that: Even the guys in his
    locker room don’t seem to recognize how much damage his mouth can cause — and
    we’re not referencing how much his twaddle motivates the opposition, but how it
    gives his own group a false sense of achievement.




    The first effects are plain. You could see from the moment the Giants’ defense decided to turn Mark
    Sanchez into a tackling dummy today that Ryan clearly miscalculated how his week
    of loud talk would help the opponent’s intensity jump a few pawls on the
    ratchet.




    Darrelle Revis quantified it for us: “It raised it up a million notches, it
    really did,” he said.




    And how’d that work out for Ryan’s guys, exactly?




    For about one quarter, just fine. Then the Giants defense woke up and
    essentially stuffed every syllable down the Jets coach’s throat in the form of a
    29-14 pummeling
    that nobody had a right to expect.




    So in the aftermath of this humiliation, you wondered: What lessons will he
    take from this?" Read more...

    POLITI: GIANTS' TOM COUGHLIN BEATS JETS' REX RYAN BUT DOESN'T NEED TO SAY SO

    "This was a victory for the Giants
    way of doing business, and the man who embodies that better than anyone limped
    off the field today with a throbbing left leg and a head held high.


    Tom Coughlin loves to quote military leaders, and in his finest moment this
    season, he even looked like a general returning from the battlefield. A nasty
    collision left him hobbled, but after watching his team shut up its loudmouth
    neighbors with a
    29-14 victory,
    he couldn’t stop smiling.




    “Never better!” he practically yelled when asked how he was feeling. “Thanks
    for asking!”




    That was as close as Coughlin would come to gloating late this afternoon, but
    if anyone deserved to pound his chest, it was him. His team was the best in this
    corner of the NFL world, by a mile, in the one game it mattered. His team was
    hungrier, better prepared and more focused in a season-on-the-brink matchup with
    the Jets.




    Rex Ryan did the talking. Coughlin did the winning. Did he have any message
    for the rival coach — the Patrick Ewing of football coaches when it comes to
    undelivered guarantees — who did everything but set his résumé on fire in the
    days leading up to this one?




    “We won the game,” Coughlin said. “That’s the statement.”




    There will be more statements in days and weeks to come, and that likely
    includes one from the Giants announcing a contract extension for their head
    coach. Owner John Mara wasn’t going there today, because he said it would “just
    lead to more speculation.” But the look on his face said everything.




    The Jets had classlessly covered up the Giants three Super Bowl murals with
    black curtains, but Mara was beaming like they had just won a fourth. They get
    to host the Cowboys with a division title on the line next week, and maybe
    Mara’s mood will change if the Giants get their doors blown off.




    That’s not likely — and Coughlin, for what he’s done to hold this team
    together, deserves to come back. He’s taken an undermanned, injury-riddled team
    to within a victory of the postseason, and it certainly doesn’t hurt that he
    ripped the tent off the circus act that shares MetLife Stadium.

    “What do you think? It does,” Mara said when asked if this victory means more
    to him. “Given everything that was at stake, given all the noise coming out of
    Florham Park, yes it does.”


    Plenty of that noise, it should be noted, came from East Rutherford, too,
    including in the aftermath of this game. Brandon Jacobs couldn’t stop himself
    from running up to Ryan and yelling “time to shut up, fat boy” — the coach had
    to be pulled away from the running back — an unnecessary gesture even if, well,
    he’s right.




    None of the noise came from Coughlin. It was Ryan who couldn’t help himself,
    behaving like a chef expecting a four-star review before the salad was served.
    “Certainly we were the better team in (my) first two years,” Ryan said. “We made
    the playoffs, went to the championship game. To say a team’s better than you
    that never went to the playoffs is ridiculous.”




    Just one problem, Rex: Coughlin never said that. He never said anything close
    to that. In that way, this was more than a victory for the Giants. It was a
    victory for the old-school way of conducting yourself as a head coach. It was
    victory for class.




    Ryan was supposed to be the master motivator, the one who bragged about his
    ice-cream socials with the offense each week. Coughlin was supposed to be the
    guy his players tuned out, the clock-watching dinosaur pushing these gym-teacher
    concepts like “accountability” and “teamwork.”




    Nothing the Jets said was tacked onto some bulletin board, but that doesn’t
    mean Coughlin didn’t motivate. Justin Tuck gushed about the way Coughlin pulled
    him aside during the week, asking him if everything was okay in his private life
    and then made a simple request.




    “He asked me to give him what I had,” Tuck said, and of course, the defensive
    lineman gave everything in his finest game of the season. The Giants defensive
    front was all over quarterback Mark Sanchez, who’ll be an easy target as the
    Jets pick up the pieces here.




    But no one should forget this: Sanchez dropped back to throw 59 times. That’s
    on the coaching staff. Maybe it’ll lead to Ryan firing offensive coordinator
    Brian Schottenheimer, but some of the blame has to come back to the man in
    charge, too.




    Ryan spent another offseason making promises he couldn’t keep, talking about
    the Super Bowl he was going to win. Imagine how Coughlin felt when he showed up
    at his stadium today and saw the mural for the one he did win covered up with a
    curtain.




    Of course, that’s the beauty of Coughlin. We’ll have to imagine. “I won’t
    mention what I thought,” he said, handling himself in victory the way he did
    before kickoff. With his head held high. With class."

    JETS FALL TO GIANTS 29 - 14

    "One by one,the Jets’ season goals have been erased, painfully unfulfilled.



    Win the AFC East. Secure a home playoff game. Be one of the league’s most
    dynamic offenses, and the No. 1 defense.




    Today, the Jets also lost the battle
    for area bragging rights, now unable to claim the “big brother” status coach Rex
    Ryan has trumpeted. And with their 29-14 loss to the Giants came perhaps the biggest blow of the
    season: The Jets’ playoff aspirations are on life support.




    To earn a postseason berth, the Jets must not only win next week at the Miami
    Dolphins — but the Cincinnati Bengals and Tennessee Titans and either the
    Oakland Raiders or Denver Broncos must lose, according to the NFL Network. In
    short, barring a near miracle, the Jets may miss the postseason for the first
    time in Ryan’s three-year tenure.




    “You can’t keep playing Russian roulette,” linebacker Bart Scott said. “When
    you keep playing that way and not taking care of business, that’s what you have
    to deal with. And then we have nobody to blame but ourselves.”




    This crosstown rivalry game was intense. Giants players triumphantly swung
    back the black curtains blocking their logos in the shared MetLife Stadium, and
    Ryan
    and Giants running back Brandon Jacobs
    had a heated postgame exchange, in
    which Jacobs yelled, “Time to shut up, fat boy!”




    It only adds insult to injury that the Giants may have delivered the knockout
    blow to the Jets’ playoffs push. The Bengals (9-6) are now in position for the
    second AFC wild-card spot, while the Broncos, Raiders and Titans are even with
    the Jets at 8-7.




    After a week of talking big, Ryan took the responsibility for the loss, the
    second straight game in which the Jets did not look like a playoff-caliber
    team.




    The Jets had all the momentum early, scoring first on a 5-yard touchdown pass
    from quarterback Mark Sanchez to tight end Josh Baker. They forced the Giants to
    punt on each of their three possessions in the first quarter.




    But with one play — a 99-yard touchdown catch by Victor Cruz — the tide
    seemed to turn toward the “visiting” Giants. With just more than two minutes
    until halftime, the Giants had a third-and-10 from their own 1-yard line. Two
    missed tackles by cornerbacks Kyle Wilson and Antonio Cromartie, and Cruz’s
    sideline hurdle of safety Eric Smith, turned a perhaps 11-yard gain into the
    biggest play of the day.




    “What can you do, man?” linebacker Calvin Pace said. “Third-and-10, one
    tackle, get off the field. We can’t get it done. They got the momentum.”




    The Jets had a chance to respond before halftime, but a promising drive
    instead ended with a missed 44-yard field goal attempt. The second half was a
    different game, one in which Sanchez was sacked four times, regularly had his
    passes batted by defenders and turned the ball over three times.




    Oddly, the Jets didn’t play their own game. They were having success running
    the ball — averaging more than 4 yards per carry — but yet Sanchez threw a
    career-high 59 passes. Ryan’s explanation was that the Jets were in catch-up
    mode, but they only trailed by more than one possession for 10 minutes of game
    time, almost exclusively in the fourth quarter.




    “If you look back, who knows what could have happened if we kept running?”
    said Sanchez, who completed 30 of those passes for 258 yards. “But that’s not
    fair, that’s not fair to (offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer). I thought
    he called a great game.”




    Ryan conceded, “You’re not going to beat anybody — we’re not — when you throw
    it that many times, that’s for sure.”




    Still, the Jets had chances late. They trailed by 20-7 early in the fourth
    quarter, but a bizarre series of plays with two overturned Sanchez fumbles, and
    a David Harris interception off a deflected pass, led to Sanchez’s 1-yard
    touchdown run. With 7:17 to play, they trailed by just six points.




    But the Jets went three-and-out on their next possession. They got the ball
    back on their 8-yard line with 2:24 to play, and instead of the fourth-quarter
    comeback that seemed to come so easily in previous charmed seasons, Sanchez was
    sacked in the end zone for a safety.




    “We had five different ways to win the game near the end,” said Scott, who
    did not put the blame entirely on the offense, “and we figured out a way to lose
    it.”




    Afterward, there was a different attitude in the Jets locker room. Nose
    tackle Sione Pouha said they “don’t really feel like much.” Sixteen games in the
    season, receiver Santonio Holmes rued that the inconsistent offense has have no
    choice but to “roll with the punches.” Scott said the Jets, who once controlled
    their own destiny, didn’t deserve to anymore.




    “If we ever want a chance to right our wrongs,” Pace said, “maybe one day
    we’ll look ourselves in the mirror and say, ‘We’ve got to stop beating
    us.’?”

    GIANTS SILENCE JETS, 29 - 14, SETTING UP NFC EAST SHOWDOWN WITH COWBOYS

    Excerpt: "It was a fitting end to a week of chirping between the Giants and Jets. The two resident yappers on each side —
    Brandon Jacobs and Rex Ryan — nearly coming to blows at what’s usually handshake
    and hug time.


    “Time to shut up, fat boy!” Jacobs yelled.




    At that point, Jacobs claims Ryan tried to come after him “the way his old
    man went after (Kevin) Gilbride.” To which, in this season of yuletide cheer, he
    sent the merriest of holiday greetings.




    “You’re talking to the wrong Giant,” Jacobs said he yelled, “because I will
    kick your (butt)!”




    We knew it would end this way, with the winning team getting the final say
    after days, weeks, months and years of trash talk. After an oft-sloppy but
    always entertaining 29-14 victory today, it was the Giants breaking from the
    “talk is cheap” part of Tom Coughlin’s mantra after delivering on the “play the
    game” portion to set up a showdown with the Dallas Cowboys for the NFC East
    title next Sunday.




    Chris Canty’s sack of Mark Sanchez in the end zone for a safety with 2:13 to
    play was pretty much the difference and set off celebrations that included
    Justin Tuck doing Fireman Ed’s “J-E-T-S” chant with a drop kick at the end.




    Time to shut up indeed.




    Still, even in victory, a hobbled Coughlin declined to get into the
    back-and-forth jawing. But he did notice how it sparked his team.




    Players who admitted they did nothing after getting “punched in the mouth” by
    the Eagles a few weeks ago, and had lost five of their last six, finally showed
    some fight.




    “It was shocking,” Coughlin said of the way his team came out in practice
    last week. “I looked up and said, ‘Is that the same guys?’ They had great
    purpose and the way they practiced is the way they played.”




    Hard. Fast. Aggressive." Read more...

    GIANTS, COWBOYS WILL VIE FOR NFC EAST TITLE NEXT WEEK

    "When the Giants and Dallas Cowboys
    meet next week, the winner will take the NFC East title. The loser will miss the
    playoffs.


    Those are the stakes that were set today after the Giants beat the Jets, 29-14, and the Cowboys lost to the
    Philadelphia Eagles, 20-7.




    Michael Vick threw two touchdown passes to lead the Eagles over Dallas in a
    game that became somewhat meaningless midway through the first quarter — when
    the Giants' win over the Jets eliminated Philly from the playoffs.




    But while the Cowboys still had wild-card hopes to play for, they clearly
    were more concerned about getting ready for the "win and you're in" route to the
    playoffs. Quarterback Tony Romo left after injuring his throwing hand on the
    first series and oft-injured running back Felix Jones hit the bench for good
    after the second series. They came within 7 seconds of getting shut out.




    Vick threw a touchdown pass on the opening series and again just before
    halftime. Alex Henery kicked field goals of 43 and 51 yards for the Eagles' only
    points in the second half.




    Philadelphia (7-8) won its third straight, giving the preseason "Dream Team"
    the chance to avoid a losing record by beating the Redskins at home in its
    finale next weekend. The Eagles also swept the season series against the Cowboys
    for the first time since 2006, having clobbered Dallas 34-7 in October.




    The Cowboys (8-7) lost for the third time in four games, and are guaranteed
    another losing record after Thanksgiving. If they end up missing the playoffs,
    that flop at the finish will loom large all offseason. Of course, if they win
    the division, it'll only be a footnote. The upcoming week will be filled with
    all sorts of similar high-stakes ramifications that will be riding on the finale
    for both Dallas and the Giants.




    Dallas announced late tonight that next week's game has been moved to prime
    time."

    GIANTS SHOW JETS THEY ARE STILL UNRIVALED WITH 29-14 VICTORY ON CHRISTMAS EVE

    "After a week's worth of trash talking and hype between the two teams that
    share one stadium, the final minutes of the Giants' 29-14 victory over the Jets were played in front of a sparsely
    filled MetLife Stadium. It was mostly just Giants fans who still remained, a
    smatter of blue surrounding the field.


    They even chanted "Giants Stadium" to rub it in.




    The Jets fans? They were long gone, perhaps like their team's playoff
    chances.




    The Giants (8-7) quickly turned a tight game into a laugher in a 14-second
    span late in the fourth quarter. Leading 20-14, Chris Canty sacked Mark Sanchez
    for a safety with 2:24 remaining and then 14 seconds later, following a failed
    onside kick, Ahmad Bradshaw scored from 19-yards out on the first play of the
    drive to ice the game.




    The result meant that the Giants would still have something to play for next
    week as their matchup with the Dallas Cowboys will for the NFC East title.




    The Jets (8-7) are in worse shape. Due to their second straight loss, even a
    win next week in Miami may not be enough to get them into the playoffs. The
    Cincinnati Bengals won today to move them to 9-6 and take a one-game lead in the
    drive for the final wildcard spot. They are stuck with three other teams at 8-7
    and a game out of the playoffs heading into the final weekend of the season.




    The Giants took the lead in the second quarter on another big play from
    Victor Cruz, this one going 99 yards as he split two defenders to race down the
    sideline for the go-ahead score. While it was in peril, the Giants never
    relinquished the lead.




    When Ahmad Bradshaw bulled over Jets safety Brodney Pool on the way to a
    14-yard touchdown run to give the Giants a 17-7 lead, it looked like he left the
    Jets' chances run over as well.




    But after extending the lead to 13, Mark Sanchez scored from one-yard out to
    cut the lead to 20-14. That would be as close as they got."

    YOU GRADE 'EM, GIANTS VS. JETS

    GOVERNOR CHRISTIE PICKS JETS OVER GIANTS BY A TOUCHDOWN

    Excerpt: "Back when the Jets and Giants were making a push for the Super
    Bowl, Gov. Chris Christie proudly
    stood alongside both teams
    . This summer, he worked with both teams and the
    league to postpone
    the preseason matchup
    as Hurricane Irene bore down on the area.




    In short, he's had a very good working relationship with both the Jets and
    Giants.




    But when it comes to Saturday's game that actually means something for both
    teams, Christie isn't pulling for both. He's taking a side.




    And in case anyone was wondering, he literally spelled out his
    allegiance.




    “J-E-T-S, Jets, Jets, Jets," Christie said in an interview with SiriusXM's
    Mad Dog Radio. "Absolutely. Rex (Ryan) and the boys win by seven." Read more...

    NY DAILY NEWS

    GIANTS' RUNNING BACK BRANDON JACOBS AND JETS' HEAD COACH REX RYAN HAVE PROFANE POST GAME EXCHANGE THAT IS LOW POINT IN RIVALRY

    "Brandon Jacobs had a
    lot of bitterness built up after a week of Rex Ryan disrespecting the
    Giants, and when Big Blue took back control of New York after loaning it to the
    Jets for two years, he didn’t attempt to hide his rage and engaged in some
    vicious name-calling.


    The Giants had enough of Ryan’s incessant trash talking last week and were
    incensed when the Jets, as is their custom for all home games, put a curtain up
    to hide the Giants’ four Super Bowl logos and three Vince Lombardi Trophies
    painted on the wall outside their locker room. The Jets players pass that wall
    on their way to their locker room from the parking lot and management doesn’t
    feel they should have to see it.




    Shortly after the Giants’ 29-14 victory — they will win the NFC East if they
    beat the Cowboys at MetLife Stadium on New Year’s night — Jacobs and Ryan came
    face-to-face around the 50-yard line and about 10 yards from the Jets
    sideline.




    Their mouths were only inches apart and their left shoulders were
    touching.




    “We had a private conversation,” Ryan said. “That’s all I’ll leave it as. He
    doesn’t like me. I respect him, but I couldn’t care less about him.”




    Jacobs provided quite a bit more detail about the confrontation.




    “He told me, ‘Shut the f--- up, wait until we win the Super Bowl,’ ” Jacobs
    said. “I told him I would punch him in the face. I told him that out of all
    these Giants on this football team, you’re talking to the wrong one.”




    At some point, Jacobs reportedly said to Ryan, “Time to shut up, fat
    boy.”




    Ryan, who was fined $75,000 earlier this season for cursing out a fan at
    halftime of a Jets home game against the Patriots, needs to learn to walk away
    from these situations. He’s in a position of authority and arguing with a player
    on another team is something that could catch the league’s attention.




    This brought the Jets-Giants rivalry to a new low.




    It was not clear how this all got started, but we know how it ended. Jacobs
    was fuming. He told ESPN on the field after his chat with Ryan that Ryan was a
    “disrespectful *******” and a “big-mouthed and big-bellied coach.”




    When Jacobs came into the interview room next to the Giants’ locker room
    about 30 minutes after the game, it didn’t take much to get him started.

    When he was asked what message he would send to Ryan, he said, “He needs to
    shut up. He’s a great coach, I take nothing away from him. He comes from a great
    coaching family, but he just needs to shut up.”



    The Giants obviously felt put off by Ryan saying the Jets were the big
    brother and the better team. The last two years, the Jets have been the better
    team. They went to two AFC title games. But the Giants have been to four Super
    Bowls, winning three of them, since the Jets’ only appearance nearly 43 years
    ago. They won their last title only four years ago.




    Jacobs claimed, “We didn’t really pay attention” to what Ryan had to say last
    week. “We knew that’s what we were going to get as soon as he had the
    opportunity to run his big, fat mouth. We knew that. That was a home game out
    there for us. We had more fans than they had.”




    The Giants took control of the game on a 99-yard touchdown from Eli
    Manning
    to Victor Cruz, the
    longest offensive play in Giants history. They were trailing 7-3 late in the
    second quarter when they had a third-and-10 from their own 1. Manning dropped
    eight yards deep in the end zone, looked to his left and then found Cruz to his
    right in between Kyle Wilson
    and Antonio Cromartie
    at the 11.




    Cruz broke Wilson’s tackle, sidestepped Cromartie and headed down the right
    sideline. Eric
    Smith
    dived at him at the 50 and couldn’t bring him down. Cruz cruised the
    rest of the way and then fired a fastball at the wall behind the end zone where
    the Jets hang their logos.




    “That was a little anger I had inside of me,” he said.




    Cruz felt Darrelle Revis
    disrespected him when he made it seem he didn't know who he was after Cruz made
    some statements about Revis last week that Cruz felt were misinterpreted as
    derogatory.




    Manning said his wife told him Friday about the story of the Jets using the
    picture of them pummeling him in the preseason game last year on their defensive
    playbook binder last week. “I didn't think anything of it,” Manning said. “I
    didn’t worry about it. I didn’t feel disrespected.”




    The Giants made it clear the Giants Way won out over the Jets Way. “It feels
    good to be a BIG brother,” Justin Tuck
    tweeted.




    And Jacobs piled on. “I knew they were going to fold no matter what, to be
    honest with you, the way they’ve been playing,” he said. “And who am I to talk
    about the way they’ve been playing? We haven’t played great.”




    As David Diehl, Lawrence Tynes and
    Zak
    DeOssie
    pulled back the curtain to show the Super Bowl and Giants logos
    after the game, Diehl shouted, “This is Giants Stadium!”




    Ryan admitted after the game the Giants are the better team this year.




    “I don’t care what he said,” Chris Snee said.




    For now, New York is a Big Blue town once again."

    JETS' COACH REX RYAN DOESN'T OWN NEW YORK, OR ANYTHING ELSE, AS HE GOT OWNED BY THE NEW YORK FOOTBALL GIANTS

    Excerpt: "The
    Jets didn’t own Saturday at MetLife Stadium. They didn’t own the place, they
    didn’t own the Giants, didn’t own anything. They got owned.

    They won
    coach’s challenges Saturday, a couple of them. They got a great whistle on a
    fourth down pass that Mark Sanchez tried to
    throw over the George Washington Bridge, and they only kept going on their first
    touchdown drive of the day because the Giants got called for 12 men on the field
    on another fourth-down play.

    The rest of the time across one of the
    longest afternoons in the whole history of pro football in Jersey, Sanchez kept
    getting knocked down or throwing it to the Giants or fumbling it into the end
    zone.

    Didn’t own. Got owned.

    In the end, when Sanchez had the
    chance to take his team down the field and make it all right, he got dropped in
    the end zone for a safety. Now it was 22-14 for the Giants. The Jets tried an
    onsides punt after that, and the Giants recovered it, and then Ahmad Bradshaw ran
    it in from there and it was 28-14 for the Giants.

    They can win their
    division now with a win next Sunday, at home against the Dallas
    Cowboys." Read more...

    GIANTS EARN BRAGGING RIGHTS OVER JETS, 29-14 ON CHRISTMAS EVE, BRANDON JACOBS, REX RYAN TRADE CURSE WORDS

    "The
    last straw came when the Giants arrived at the stadium on Saturday and saw all
    their Super Bowl logos on the wall outside their locker room covered with black
    curtains. After a week of listening to the Jets talk, that was the final
    insult.

    Boy did it feel good to the Giants to tear those curtains
    down.

    That’s the first thing they did after coming off the field with
    their honor restored and playoff hopes saved thanks to an emotional, 29-14 win
    over their intra-city rivals in the Meadowlands. David Diehl, Lawrence Tynes and
    Zak
    DeOssie
    did the honors as soon as the game was over, but the entire Giants
    organization shared their joy.

    PHOTOS:
    GIANTS MAKE IT A BIG BLUE CHRISTMAS


    “We all saw that as a
    sign of disrespect,” Diehl said. “They’ve worked extremely hard to cover up our
    logos and the Super Bowl trophies right outside our locker room. I think all of
    us said, ‘Hey, fine. Let them do what they want to do. But after this game,
    we’re going to show that this is a team with a lot of pride.’ ”

    They
    showed plenty of that on Saturday with a stellar performance that included five
    sacks and three turnovers by their revitalized defense and the first 99-yard
    play in franchise history on a touchdown pass from Eli Manning to Victor
    Cruz
    . It was a relentless effort worthy of their “big brother” status that
    the Jets had so loudly been after.

    “Given all the noise that was coming
    out of Florham Park, it’s a satisfying win,” said the Giants’ usually reserved
    co-owner, John Mara. “It kind of
    reinvigorates this franchise and the players.”

    This was about far more
    important things than “bragging rights” for the Giants, of course. The win
    literally saved their season. Had they lost they could have been eliminated from
    contention. Instead, they’ll wake up on Christmas morning knowing they can start
    preparing for a winner-take-all showdown for the NFC East title with the Dallas
    Cowboys at MetLife Stadium on New Year’s Day.

    But don’t underestimate how
    much those “bragging rights” meant to this franchise and its players, especially
    after listening to constant trash-talking from Rex Ryan and his players
    that really began three years ago when Ryan got the Jets job. Nobody seemed to
    take it more personally than Brandon Jacobs, who
    got into an argument with Ryan on the field after the game.

    Jacobs called
    Ryan a “loudmouth ***” and Jacobs said Ryan told him to “shut the f--- up.”
    Jacobs said he called him “fat boy” and when Ryan tried to talk back to him,
    Jacobs said, “I told him I’d punch him in the head.”

    Those warm holiday
    wishes aside, that’s exactly what the Giants (8-7) did to the Jets (8-7) with
    arguably their finest defensive performance of the year. Jets quarterback Mark
    Sanchez
    tried in vain to pick apart the Giants’ vulnerable defense by
    throwing the ball 59 times. But he completed only 30, was held to 258 yards and
    threw two interceptions. He was also sacked five times.

    “Last week we
    practiced with more energy, more enthusiasm and greater speed (on defense) than
    we had in a long time, and it shocked me,” Tom Coughlin said. “I
    said, ‘Is that the same guys?’ The way they practiced is the way they played.
    They were exceptional. Regardless of the circumstance, they kept turning the
    Jets offense back.”

    They needed it, too, because Manning struggled to
    find open receivers against the Jets’ secondary. He completed only nine of 27
    passes for 225 yards.

    But he came through with two huge completions that
    turned the game. Late in the first half, on a thirdand10 from his own 1, he hit
    Cruz with a 12-yard pass that the second-year sensation turned into a 99-yard
    touchdown. Then late in the third quarter, he hit Cruz (three catches, 164
    yards) with a 36-yarder that set up an Ahmad Bradshaw
    14-yard touchdown run that gave the Giants a 17-7 lead.

    The Giants had a
    chance to ease their way to a victory from there, but they turned the game into
    a nail-biter after Sanchez fumbled a snap on the Giants’ 1-yard line with 8:53
    remaining and Giants linebacker Jacquian Williams
    recovered in the end zone. But Manning was picked off by Jets linebacker
    David Harris
    on the next play, and the Jets converted that into a 1-yard
    touchdown run by Sanchez that got them within 20-14.

    But the Giants’
    defense wasn’t finished, and defensive tackle Chris Canty sacked
    Sanchez in the end zone for a safety with 2:13 remaining. One Jets failed onside
    kick later and Bradshaw was running for a 19-yard touchdown that sent Jets fans
    scurrying for the exits.

    For the Giants, though, the “bragging” had only
    just begun.

    “Those guys in green like to do a lot of talking,” Canty
    said. “But at the end of the day the New York Football Giants talk with our
    football pads in between those white lines.”

    “We did a little talking
    ourselves. We’re not innocent,” added defensive end Justin Tuck. “But we
    came out and backed it up.”

    Yes they did, and now they still have a
    chance to back up all their playoff guarantees with one more big regular-season
    game. But that’s for later. First, they needed to reassert what Diehl yelled
    when he tore down the curtains, that “This is Giants Stadium!”

    And just
    as importantly to them, they sent a pointed message to the Jets that Jacobs put
    so eloquently: “It’s time for them to shut the f--- up.”

    REX HAS NOTHING TO BOAST ABOUT

    Excerpt: "You
    knew Rex
    Ryan
    wouldn’t leave MetLife Stadium quietly, even after the Jet game plan
    blew up in his face like an exploding cigar. So Ryan had a profane, verbal joust
    with Brandon Jacobs right
    there on the field — “I couldn’t care less about him,” Ryan said later — and
    then the Jets coach was in the interview room, alternating between humble and
    combative.

    One minute, Ryan was saying the Giants were “definitely the
    better team this year.” The next moment, feisty, he was saying, “I’ll go play
    ’em again. I’m more than happy to play ’em right now.”

    Here’s the thing,
    though: After what we saw on Saturday afternoon, the mouth must close shut now,
    at least until next fall and maybe longer. Ryan is not king of New York this
    Christmas. He is not even ruler of the second wild-card spot in the
    AFC.

    When the Jets lost a slopfest to the Giants Saturday, 29-14, they
    dropped a lot more than a football game and control of their own playoff
    destiny. They lost bragging rights around here, and we all know how much Ryan
    loves to brag. Like it or not, little brother stays little brother, maybe for
    another four years.

    “He needs to shut up,” Jacobs said. And you know
    what? Ryan deserves that lecture, this comeuppance. Not so much for the arrogant
    riffs, which are welcome comic relief in their own way, but for that offensive
    game plan. Before a home crowd, and against a very flawed opponent, the coach
    and his staff failed to arrive at a functional offense yet again. He was
    outcoached by Tom Coughlin, the same
    way Ryan had been outcoached twice this season by Bill Belichick and
    last week by Andy Reid.

    The
    Jets gave up on the run way too early. They put the ball all day in the hands
    and arm of Mark Sanchez, who
    looked utterly unprepared for such responsibilities. All those soul-searching
    Thursday ice cream socials with his key players, the ones that Ryan described
    this past week, have not created a serviceable passing attack.

    Sanchez
    went back to pass 64 times on Saturday. Five of those times, he was sacked. He
    threw 30 completions, two interceptions. He fumbled away the ball
    once.

    “We’re really not built to play that way,” Ryan said. Yet they did.
    They played right to the Giants’ strength in the first half, too, long before
    the score got out of hand. It was all a great mystery, as if the radio signals
    in Sanchez’s helmet were being issued by someone on the Giants’
    sideline.

    For some reason, Ryan and Brian
    Schottenheimer
    opted for a torrent of forced, unsuccessful slant passes into
    coverage. Sanchez threw and threw and threw. Many of those passes were deflected
    by the Giants’ defensive line or nearly intercepted by the Giants’
    secondary.

    Even some of the Jets seemed puzzled by it all. “We’re not in
    the business of play-calling,” LaDainian
    Tomlinson
    said, diplomatically." Read more...

    GIANTS' WR VICTOR CRUZ MAKES SURE DARRELLE REVIS KNOWS WHO HE IS NOW WITH 99 YARD TD PLAY

    Excerpt: "It wasn't supposed to be a touchdown. It was supposed to be a short hook that
    (maybe) netted a first down and helped the Giants escape from their own 1-yard
    line.



    But Victor Cruz often does
    more than people expect. Darrelle Revis may
    have insisted he didn’t know Cruz before Saturday’s 29-14 Giants win. But Cruz
    is sure the Jets’ cornerback knows him now.




    “I think he has a clue,” the Giants’ receiver said.




    Cruz made sure of that with about 2:45 to play in the second quarter. With
    his Giants struggling to move the ball, Cruz grabbed Eli Manning’s safe
    third-down pass at the 11-yard line, juked past Jets defensive backs Antonio Cromartie
    and Kyle Wilson
    and flew down the right sideline.




    “I turned upfield and I saw a little bit of green grass,” he said. “After (he
    beat Cromartie and Wilson) I was pretty free so I was just going up the sideline
    hoping nobody caught me.”




    And when it was all over, Cruz had a 99-yard TD reception, a momentum-changer
    in the Giants’ win over the Jets at MetLife Stadium, and another milestone play
    for football’s most surprising receiver.




    Cruz’s TD was the first 99-yard play from scrimmage in Giants history. That
    wasn’t the only history he made. His 164 receiving yards (on three catches)
    brought his season total to 1,358, breaking Amani Toomer’s team
    record (1,343). His sixth 100-yard game of the season is also a Giants
    record.




    Cruz was told about the first milestone when he reached the sideline, and he
    almost didn’t believe it.




    “It’s always been a childhood dream to come in and make a football team, let
    alone break a record,” said the second-year pro from Paterson, who was undrafted
    out of the University of Massachusetts. “It’s just a surreal moment for me. It
    was just amazing, man.” Read more...



    GIANTS' DE JUSTIN TUCK BLOCKS OUT ACHES AND PAINS AND TURNS IN BIG PERFORMANCE IN GIANTS' WIN OVER JETS



    Excerpt: "There is a nagging toe injury, and the memories of the early-season neck
    injury are still fresh. There was a groin injury a month or so ago, and a few
    weeks ago, there was an ankle injury.




    But for Justin Tuck, none of
    those physical issues mattered Saturday against the Jets. The Giants’ defensive
    captain had a conversation with Tom Coughlin earlier
    in the week, and he left it with a new mental approach. That showed in the 29-14
    win at MetLife Stadium Saturday.




    “I just made up my mind that Im not going to be healthy this year; its not
    going to happen, Tuck said. But your mind can make your body do a lot of things
    that normally wouldnt happen when youre mentally right.




    Tuck made four tackles and registered his first sack in three weeks. Even
    more importantly he regularly hovered around Mark Sanchez,
    harassing the Jets quarterback into poor throw after poor throw.




    Tucks play set the tone for a defensive line that finally lived up to its
    reputation. The Giants sacked Sanchez five times, hit him six times and piled up
    seven tackles for a loss. So dominant was the pass-rushing group that wideout Victor
    Cruz
    said the players got to the QB better than they have all year.




    “He didn't miss a snap, and he went hard, Coughlin said of Tuck. He prepared
    himself to play and he changed his outlook and demeanor. He got very positive.
    He decided not to be concerned with the little nicks that he had that were very
    bothersome to him. He decided to go the other way with them and basically ignore
    them, and that is ow he played.




    Tuck credited the new approach to his coach. Last Sunday, safety Antrel Rolle ripped
    into unnamed teammates for not practicing with nicks and bruises, and a few days
    after that, Coughlin met with Tuck. The coach and player talked of legacies and
    the future, and the conversation made Tuck reconsider the toe, the neck, the
    ankle, the groin." Read more...



    JETS KEEP THROWING, KEEP FAILING IN LOSS TO GIANTS



    Excerpt: "Rex
    Ryan
    said it wasn’t the game plan.



    Really.




    Then why did the Jets do it? Why did they play into the Giants’ hands with a
    pass-happy approach when they were still very much in Saturday’s game — indeed,
    when they were physically beating them?




    There were many other factors in the Giants’ 29-14 victory Saturday, but it
    started when the Jets ceded control of the line of scrimmage by not trying to
    run the football.




    By the end of the day, the
    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

  • #2
    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: SUNDAY, DECEMBER 25, 2011 - 1:40 P.M.

    Busy bee even on holidays , Thanks RF !
    " Success is never final, but failure can be " B.P.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: SUNDAY, DECEMBER 25, 2011 - 1:40 P.M.

      [quote user="G-Men Surg."]Busy bee even on holidays , Thanks RF ![/quote]

      There was so much news today I thought I'd have to cry UNCLE lol
      “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: SUNDAY, DECEMBER 25, 2011 - 1:40 P.M.

        thanks Ro....
        just now getting a chance to read the news...

        Hope you had a good Christmas.....
        "Measure Twice......Cut Once"
        You couldn't be more full of **** if you were break dancing in a Port-a-Potty.......Kruunch

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: SUNDAY, DECEMBER 25, 2011 - 1:40 P.M.

          [quote user="GameTime"]thanks Ro....
          just now getting a chance to read the news...

          Hope you had a good Christmas.....[/quote]

          An uneventful holiday is great for me. So on Saturday, it was especially great that all of the eventfulness had to do with beating the jets. I hope you and your family had a great holiday as well.
          “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

          Comment

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