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Monday, December 29, 2008

The Road to the Super Bowl

You need not be a rocket scientist to already understand that we will likely be facing the Eagles. Having just seen Minnesota up close and personal, barely losing to them in the home advantage stadium without ~half of our roster, we were not impressed. Nor was the betting public, who make the Eagles a -3 FG FAVORITE IN MINNESOTA. As long as the Eagles show up, which they will, they will beat this team. They are perfectly suited for Tarvaris Jackson. Jim Johnson will disguise their looks and throw the blitz at this turnover machine. Jackson will get eaten up, make enough mistakes and the Eagles will head to the Meadowlands. If for some inexplicable reason the Eagles pull a boner (the worst enemy of Andy Reid is Andy Reid) and somehow lose to the Vikings, then all the more power to the Giants... Just expect the Eagles.

We will have plenty of time to analyze another Eagles-Giants matchup on Jan 11th. But for now all we will say is that the NY Giants' chances for seeing the Vikings again this season is nil.

On the other side of the bracket, the Falcons fly into Phoenix for a game with the Arizona Cardinals. I am sure you are not shocked to find that the Falcons are road favorites there too, -3. The rookie QB will have his moment in the sun, probably beat AZ (but I do believe AZ has a better shot of an upset than MINN does vs the Eagles), and then get his NFL wakeup call vs the Carolina Panthers.

So without getting too far ahead of ourselves, the joy of the bye is that you can fairly see how straightforward the path to the Super Bowl is. Probably face the Eagles. Probably face the Panthers. For those of you who are waving your finger at me for getting the gmen too far ahead of themselves, the Giants have been around the block enough times to know not to look past WHOEVER they face two weekends from now. All we are saying here is that this is not Everest. This is the NFL is 2008, and there is no one who the Giants are not capable of beating. If the Giants should face the Eagles and/or Panthers and lose to either one of them, they are not deserving of ANY consideration. But if the Giants play their hand properly, heal up, take one game at a time, properly game plan each opponent and play with the urgency of the playoffs, the Giants will be more than ready to not only get to the Super Bowl but go all the way. We predicted a Super Bowl victory for the Giants after the Eagles loss in W14 and see no reason why this cannot and will not happen.

Sidenote: in the next 13 days we are going to hear from media pundits about how the Giants have lost 3 of the last 4, how the Eagles (or Falcons) have won 5 of the last 6, how the Giants are not that great, blahblahblah. These people do not know what they are talking about. Fact: the Giants had a Plaxico hangover vs the Eagles, played a stinker, next. Fact: Gilbrown showed his illustrious talent in not adapting to the Cowboys or else we win that one easily. Fact: the Giants got their mojo back vs the Panthers. Fact: the Giants could have easily won yesterday if (to borrow a term from Simms) there was no money in the bank. With the exception of the Dallas game, Coughlin has done a very good job and the Giants are exactly where they are supposed to be.

20 comments:

Mitch said...

The Playoffs are here...and lets go!

Andy, the funny thing about the upcoming Wild Card Weekend is that you could make a case for all 4 road teams winning. I don't ever remember a scenario like that ever. Philly, Atlanta, Baltimore & Indy. It will be nice to sit back next week and just relax and enjoy.

Andy F. said...

All 4 road teams are favorites in vegas. While there is league parity right now, there certainly is not divisional parity. The nfc north, nfc west and afc west are three putrid divisions at the moment. That the afc east fins are dogs to the ravens is happenstance.

Mitch said...

Maybe that is a good enough reason to possibly re-seed for the NFL playoffs. I'm sure someone in the Press will bring this up this week.

I'm not sure but I think the G-Men finished the season with only 13 turnovers which is one better than the 1990 team.


Will the Giants be bird-watching this week?

Yes. The three teams the Giants could host in two weeks, the Eagles, Cardinals and Falcons...all have ornithological names.

Motown Blue said...

Before the season began I thought the Eagles were the team to beat in the NFC East. They have gotten better over the last month and a half mainly due to the health of #36. Andy was mentioned in the Fifth Down which also has a link to stats on the Eagles and a ranking of #2 by Footballoutsiders:

http://fifthdown.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/12/29/giants-open-thread-preparing-for-the-eagles/#more-1833

The Eagles will be playing a scrimmage next weekend and hope the coaching staff memorizes every play, tendency, formations, shift , when they blink etc. of the Eagles. I know we have all of 2 weeks to talk and analyze but they have to take advantage of the Eagles over aggressive LBs which again leads to more screens, quick slants, TE (both Boss and D Johnson), draws and #44 touching the ball in the middle of the field.

Andy F. said...

The signature play of the game for the Eagles yesterday was McNabb in trouble on the pass rush, deftly squeezing himself up and then out to the right side of the pocket, buying himself a world of time to checkdown to Buckhalter, who rumbled for 60 yards. This is the same bs Westbrook stuff that killed us in W14. Get a safety SPY on these RB checkdowns.

Andy F. said...

(NOT PIERCE, a SAFETY)

Mitch said...

I vote for Kenny Phillips...he's a heat seeking missle!

Andy F. said...

Jets fired Mangini. Smart move. Next.

bruno said...

We have a legit backup in Carr. Anyone know how long we have him signed for? There will be teams looking for a good QB. I would trade him for a 1st and 2nd round draft pick

Andy F. said...

Carr is signed for 1 year, he'll be a free agent this March.

bruno said...

nuts

Bob said...

DEFINITELY have Kenny Philips spy on
Westbrook/Buckhalter. If we did this the last game, we would have won.

Bob said...

Now the Jets come after Spags.

Why don't the Giants just double his money.

Andy F. said...

That would be okay by me, but can we take away any extra money paid to Spags from Gilbrown's salary?

Word is that the interim coach in Oakland may have put himself into stronger contention for the HC job there, dropping Gilbrown from serious contention. A shame, because we were counting on the mentally insane (Davis) as our best hope of unloading Gilbrown. Our only remaining option now would be to convince KC to take back Peterson as their GM so that Peterson can pay US draft picks for Gilbrown.

Mitch said...

Oakland has asked permission to speak to Kevin Gilbride as reported by Mike Francessa.

I think the Jets will go with a veteran HC...only because they have to placate Favre. That might mean Shottenheimer, ( his son is already there) Holmgren? (reunite w/ Brett )or maybe even Fassel. We most certainly will lose Spags...I just hope it is not to the Cowboys...

xtian said...

i think the cowboys are going promote garrett to hc. i would think that spags is gone unless there is a deal in place for him to succeed coughlin in a couple of years and he thinks it is worth it. being the hc for the giants with their mgmt and reese selecting the players is a damn fine situation. i hope sheridan can be as good a dc if the gmen decide to go with him. at least the schemes are put in place and have been learned.

atl vs az is a toss-up. ryan is still a rookie qb and they are playing in warm phoenix which will help the passing, this favors az. but atl has better running and defense which usually wins in the playoffs because of the inclement weather. i'm picking az.

philly vs minny. philly has much more experience; those blitzes will make jackson makecostly mistakes. i expect philly to win this one.

planetguy said...

Almost certainly the Eagles come to town on Jan. 11. Five suggestions to turn the last Eagles loss to a win.

1. Yes on Andy F.'s safety on Westbrook!

2. Do they have a roster spot for a long kicker--Tynes?

3. Move Hixon back to kickoff returns. Special teams are a big part of the game. With a long kicker and Hixon on returns that could mean 30 yards field position after each score. Someone else has to pick up the slack in WR.

4. Spags has to spend overtime coming up with new schemes to pressure McNabb.

5. Pound all game with BJ.

xtian said...

so far, clev, det, stl rumored to be interested in spags. raiders talking to gilbride.

Motown Blue said...

Understand that TC will be conducting some self scouting this week to "look for its own tendencies and how they've been predictable" He is also concerned with the following: "big plays surrendered on defense, missed throws downfield on offense and a kickoff coverage unit that's allowed opponents to begin their drives at an average of the 31-yard line (the second-worst average start in the league to the Chiefs' 32-yard line).".....what about your OCs poor usage of personnel and lack of ability to adjsut to defensive schemes??

http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2008/12/new_york_giants_plan_to_relax.html#more

There is an obvious concern w/ the KO team coverage which could be boosted by Tynes and yes the D has been giving up some big plays more than usual lately. I am hoping some rest for the D will help with that department.

Finally, the Spags rumor mill is heating up and I see only 1 real threat...Cleveland. Detroit is out as they are set to hire Billick considering they kept 2 former Raven assistants. Sorry Wonder, but I think Spags is smart enought to fray from a losing culture such as the Jets and second fiddle to a team in the same building. St. Louis hasn't made announcement as of yet and I don't know where KC is right now?

As for Gilbrown I propose that we start a letter drive here at ultimatenyg to Davis as diehard Raider fans asking for the hire of Gilbride!! We need to conspire and make this a full press propoganda event......anyone in????

Mitch said...

I'm in Motown, but why in the world would anyone work for Al Davis? I can see it now...

For the 4th time in the game against the Chiefs it is 2nd and 10 for the Raiders and Gilbride calls for what else? yup...you guessed it a run between the tackles. At the post game press conference Davis fires Gilbride for incompetency and refuses to pay the balance of his salary.

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