February 6, 2012
12:57 pm 0 comments
It all looked so familiar. The Giants were trailing the Patriots with the ball with just minutes remaining. Eli Manning would have to lead an improbable drive down the field to get Big Blue a Vince Lombardi Trophy. The underdog Giants would have to come from behind to defeat arguably the greatest quarterback in the history of the NFL, Tom Brady. The Giants would have to prove all the nay-sayers wrong once again. Sunday night, Patriots fans had that feeling of deja blue.
Super Bowl MVP, Eli Manning would lead another magical drive down the field with the Giants trailing 17-15 and just 3:46 remaining. The Giants scored a touchdown that was not as memorable as Plaxico Burress’s touchdown in Super Bowl 42, but one that left the same exact feeling in the stomach of Patriots fans. Ahmad Bradshaw would run it into the endzone with 58 seconds on the clock to give the Giants the lead, 21-17. The biggest play of the drive came on the very first play. Pinned back at his own 12 yard line, Manning threw a gorgeous pass to Mario Manningham who made an incredible play to stay in bounds and make the catch at the 50 yard line to give the G-Men great field position. The Patriots challenged the play and ended up losing a timeout that would have helped in their final drive in the last minute of the game. The Manningham catch reminded many of the David Tyree catch in Super Bowl 42 off his helmet. It was the big throw and catch that gave them life and kept the drive going. The difference between this drive and the drive in Super Bowl 42 was that the Giants made it look much easier last night. They did not have one third or fourth down on the drive. The Patriots answer had no answer for Manning and the Giants offense. Manning found Manningham and Nicks the entire drive wherever and whenever he wanted. Eli was making passes in his brothers building that we would normally see his brother make. His throws were as accurate as they could be finding every opening in the Patriots defense. It was evident that the Pats defense was fatigued as the Giants were finding open receivers on every play.
The Patriots would get the ball back with 58 seconds left and a timeout at their own 20 needing a touchdown to win. It would end up being too little too late for Bill Belichick’s team. There would be another deja blue moment on the drive as Justin Tuck would send Brady down on a sack on 3rd and 10 that forced the Patriots to use their final timeout. That had Giants fans thinking of the sack rookie Jay Alford put on Brady in Super Bowl 42 that would put the Pats away. It all looked so familiar as the events unfolded. It seemed to be destiny for the Giants who once again entered the playoffs at 9-7 and made a magical run to a Super Bowl Championship.
Tom Coughlin, the coach on the hot seat just weeks before the playoffs began will now be holding up another Vince Lombardi Trophy in the Canyon of Heroes in the greatest city in the world on Tuesday. Eli Manning will be holding his second Super Bowl MVP trophy. Millions of fans will be packed into the streets celebrating another Giants championship. A team that looked to have the keys to be headed home in December will now be presented with the “Key to the City” Tuesday in what is set to be another memorable parade in New York.