17 Super reasons Giants will win
GLENDALE, Ariz. - Somewhere between Bill Belichick’s scowl and Michael Strahan’s smile, sometime between Tom Brady’s picks and Lawrence Tyne’s kick, some place between history and histrionics, it hit me.
The New York Giants are going to win.
In the second-biggest upset in the XLII-year history of these games, the New York Giants are going to beat the New England Patriots in today’s Super Bowl.
Here are 17 reasons why.
One reason for every game the unbeaten Patriots have won.
Minus, of course, the game in which they cheated.
1. TODAY, IF ONLY TODAY,
THE GIANTS ARE A BETTER TEAM
A month ago, with no motivation other than pride, the Giants still scored 35 points against the Patriots and led them in the fourth quarter.
Since then, the Giants have surged while the Patriots have staggered.
In three postseason games, the Giants defense has given up seven drives of more than 40 yards.
In two postseason games, the Patriots defense has given up nine such drives.
In three postseason games, Giants quarterback Eli Manning has thrown zero interceptions.
In two postseason games, Patriots quarterback Brady has thrown three.
2. I’LL TAKE LAWRENCE TYNES,
YOU CAN HAVE
The last time the Giants’ Tynes attempted an important kick, with his foot frozen black and his career on the line, he kicked the longest postseason field goal in Green Bay’s Lambeau Field history.
The last time Gostkowski attempted an important kick was, well, um, er, last season?
3. RANDY MOSS HAS ONLY TWO
MORE POSTSEASON CATCHES
THAN JEREMY SHOCKEY
Moss may have had the greatest scoring season of any receiver in history, but the postseason defenses of Jacksonville and San Diego figured him out.
They pounded him at the line, doubled him downfield, and generally messed with his head while holding him to two catches for 32 yards.
Here’s guessing the Giants’ defensive coaches have studied those two game tapes.
That is, if the Patriots didn’t steal them first.
4. THE PATRIOTS ORGANIZATION
HAS ALREADY ATTEMPTED TO
TRADEMARK “19-0" AND
“19-0 THE PERFECT SEASON”
Maybe this is a smart legal move, but it’s a lousy football move, for which I have but three words.
Karma, karma, karma.
5. THE GIANTS HAVE TWO
THINGS THAT CAN KEEP
THE PATRIOTS’ RECORD-SETTING
OFFENSE OFF THE FIELD
Their names are Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw.
In three playoff games, Giants running backs have combined to average 106 yards rushing, the kind of yards that chew up the clock and freeze the opposing quarterback.
In the Patriots’ closest call this season, the Baltimore Ravens running backs rushed for 162 yards.
In the Patriots’ last game, with San Diego’s best rusher carrying the ball just twice, the Chargers still rushed for 104 yards.
6. BROADWAY PLAXICO
Early this week, Giants receiver Plaxico Burress was bold enough to predict a Giants victory, just as Joe Namath did for the New York Jets before the Super Bowl’s biggest shocker, in 1969.
Then, in ensuing interviews, Burress was tough enough to keep repeating the 23-17 prediction.
“That’s what made Muhammad Ali so great,” Burress said.
An early fourth-quarter knockout sounds right.
7. OFF-BROADWAY PATRIOTS
Here’s one more guarantee -- Burress will be twice as tall as anyone covering him.
Burress will take the field standing 6 feet 5 1/2 , while Asante Samuel and Ellis Hobbs, the Patriots cornerbacks, will be 5-10 and 5-9, respectively.
8. MY BUDDY DANA FOX
DID THE COOLEST THING
Fox is a Los Angeles attorney and lifelong Giants fan.
He drives around with an NYGIENT license plate. He wore an Eli Manning jersey to work this week.
He was given a chance to buy one face-value ticket to today’s game, one ticket.
He turned it down because that meant he couldn’t watch the game with the man who taught him to be a lifelong Giants fan, his father Sonny.
9. CHEATERS NEVER WIN
Unbelievably, the Patriots were not forced to forfeit their opening game when they were caught stealing signs from the New York Jets.
Have I mentioned those three words yet?
Karma, karma, karma.
10. RODNEY HARRISON
IS BARRY BONDS
The Patriots safety missed the first four games this year while serving a suspension for using performance-enhancing drugs.
Think about that. A guy is playing in the Super Bowl who missed one-fourth of his team’s games because he was a juicer.
Yet has anyone booed him? Has anyone held up a giant syringe and harassed him?
If he were a baseball player who had missed 40 games, he would be smothered with disapproval, but because he plays football, we just ignore it.
Let’s see him muscle his way through Jacobs and Bradshaw
11. PAU GASOL IS A GIANT
I’m sorry, this has nothing to do with the Super Bowl, but I’ve been dying all weekend to celebrate that great Lakers trade, and this is my only chance.
12. THE BOOT WAS REAL
Brady is hobbled. His ankle is injured. If you didn’t believe the photos of the boot cast, believe the way he gingerly walks, and the way his teammates bluntly talk.
“The guy is hurt, what else do you want me to say?” Moss said.
13. WET WILLY
On the charming ESPN commercial that features Eli and Peyton Manning sparring with each other like kids, Eli carefully licks his finger and sticks it into Peyton’s ear.
The high jinks of champions.
14. SHOOTING THE GAPS
While the Patriots have the collective personality of a musket, the Giants insist on being themselves.
Strahan, their defensive end who helped them lead the league in sacks, is known for a huge gap between his two front teeth.
“I went to the dentist and had all of the X-rays, charts and pictures of how it would look if it was fixed,” he said. “I decided that if I did it, it wouldn’t be me.”
15. CHRIS SNEE IS THE
TOUGHEST GUY ON THE FIELD
The Giants guard is the son-in-law of Coach Tom Coughlin.
He’s also the guy whose holding penalty nullified a touchdown run late in the eventual victory over the Packers.
16. DID WE SAY THEY
There’s a newspaper report that the Patriots secretly taped the final St. Louis Rams walk-through before Super Bowl XXXVI in 2002.
There is also a report that Matt Walsh, a former Patriots video assistant, is dying to sing about other secret tapings.
This is only going to be worse for Patriots Coach Belichick, who may eventually be summoned to Congress to explain himself.
If his attention is diverted from the Super Bowl game plan for even a moment, that moment is all the New York Giants require.
17. NOBODY’S PERFECT
Bill Plaschke can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. For previous Plaschke columns, go to latimes.com/plaschke.