BY CHRIS ZADOROZNY, Staff Writer
Prediction: Patriots- 27 Giants- 24
Super Bowl XLVI will have a bit of reminiscing for both teams as we have a rematch of Super Bowl XLII. The New England Patriots and New York Giants will battle in Indianapolis this Sunday at 6:30pm on NBC.
The New York Giants earned their way to the Super Bowl by winning the NFC East. It was a surprising year in the NFC East, as many people picked the Philadelphia Eagles “Dream Team” to not only win the NFC East but go to the NFC Championship. Well, they didn’t even make the playoffs and the Giants did, on the last game of the regular season.
The Giants beat the Atlanta Falcons in the Wild Card game. It was a big surprise, as the only points allowed were from a safety early in the game. It was a bit of a shock, too, as many had picked the Falcons to upset the Giants. They moved on to face the defending Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers at the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field in the NFC Championship.
The New England Patriots are in their fifth Super Bowl since 2001, and earned the top spot in the AFC East this year. They were the top seed in the AFC as well. They beat the Tim Tebow-led Denver Broncos in a blowout in the divisional round of the playoffs. Then, in the conference championship, they barely edged out the Baltimore Ravens on a last second missed field goal by Ravens kicker Billy Cundiff.
In Super Bowl XLII, the Giants upset the Patriots in a shocker. The Patriots were favored by 12 points and were looking to go a record breaking 19-0. The Patriots fell 17-14 and will now be looking for revenge. Both Eli Manning of the Giants and Tom Brady of the Patriots, who both played in the S.B. XLII will face off again. Both quarterbacks were elected to the Pro Bowl, but aren’t playing as that was this past Sunday.
Tom Brady and Eli Manning were second and third in the league in passer rating, while the Giants had two of the top five rushing leaders in the league: Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs. Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz of the Giants are two of the top five receivers in the league. The New York Giants have the best offense in the league, while New England ranks third. The Patriots rank higher on defense though, with the second best defense in the league. The Giants have the sixth best defense in the league.
Quarterback Tom Brady leads his team, 12th season out of Michigan. Tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez are two of the weapons used by the Patriots. They also have wide receivers Wes Welker, Chad Ochocinco, and Deion Branch. Benjarvus Green-Ellis and Danny Woodhead lead the Patriots running game.
On the Giants side of the ball, other than quarterback Eli Manning out of Mississippi, they have a massive running game, with a big passing game. Jake Ballard is their main tight end, followed by Bradshaw and Jacobs in the running game. Nicks and Cruz lead the way in the passing game, but they have a dark horse in former Michigan wide receiver Mario Manningham.
Both teams have Michigan connections. As mentioned before, the Patriots have Tom Brady, but they also have punter Zoltan Mesko. The Giants have Manningham, as well as center David Baas.
It will be a battle of the Patriots defense against the Giants offense. It should be a close game, as both have highly experienced offenses. Both teams have a fair shot at this game, and it could come down to just a field goal, maybe a touchdown. Super Bowl XLVI will be one heck of a game, with a lot of storylines, big matchups, and big plays. The commercials won’t be too bad either.