Giants, Patriots for the win
Posted January 18, 2012
We’re quickly approaching the best and worst day in the NFL season, the Super Bowl. It’s the best day because it’s why teams play the game, for the chance to be the best and win it all, but it’s also the worst day because it signifies the end of the season (which kills me every year).
In three Sundays two teams will face off for the Lombardi Trophy. Those two teams will be determined after the Conference Championships this weekend. So who’s it going to be?
New York Giants vs. San Francisco 49ers
The New York Giants are taking on the San Francisco 49ers for the NFC Championship at 6:30 p.m. Sunday on FOX. Now history would tell you that the Giants win this game, but if you saw how the 49ers came back and won against the Saints you may not be so sure.
In the last six seasons, five teams that played a wild-card game have made it to the Super Bowl and of those five, four have won. The Giants are the only team that played wild card weekend left alive, so statistics would argue that the Blue Men will advance.
I have to agree. The Giants are playing their best football and wide receiver Hakeem Nicks has emerged as a very dependable option for quarterback Eli Manning.
San Francisco did beat the Giants on Nov. 13, but it was close (27-20) and the Giants were hurt. They have vastly improved since and as long as Manning’s illness really is just a stomach bug the team’s healthier than they’ve been all season. New York dismantled the Packers last weekend and should take the win over the 49ers this weekend.
Baltimore Ravens vs. New England Patriots
This game breaks down to defense vs. offense and in this day and age offense usually has the edge in the NFL. I’d imagine the Patriots haven’t forgotten when Baltimore came to town two years ago and handed them a 33-14 loss, not to mention the booing that came from the fans at Foxboro afterwards.
Last weekend Baltimore had a hard time producing any offense and relied on the Texans turnovers to set up their scoring drives. Houston’s quarterback TJ Yates played well but his rookie performance in no way compares to what the Ravens can expect from the Patriots veteran quarterback Tom Brady. The turnovers won’t come as easy for Baltimore when they face the Patriots Sunday at 3 p.m. on CBS.
Like Manning has Nicks, Brady has All-Pros at tight end Rob Gronkowski and receiver Wes Welker. Gronkowski has emerged as Brady’s favorite receiver and with his size one can see why. The pair should be riding high after a huge performance against the Broncos Saturday, quite the opposite of the Ravens who don’t seem to be getting a long too well.
Baltimore safety Ed Reed is riling things up with his critique of quarterback Joe Flacco’s play Sunday, saying he was "rattled" and "just didn't look like he had a hold on the offense.” Flacco, who has been scrutinized throughout the season, dismissed the comments as “not that big of a deal.”
Look for the Patriots to continue to be an offensive threat even against the Baltimore D, they’ll take the win in Foxboro Sunday.
Of course any mention of the NFL wouldn’t be complete without a mention of Tim Tebow, who I’m sure you’ve heard by now, played most of the second half against the Patriots injured. The extent of the injuries hasn’t been determined but he’s dealing with rib, lung and chest injuries. Just to name a few.