Sunday, February 3, 2008

Eli Becomes a Winner

What an unbelievable win by the Giants over the Patriots tonight in the Super Bowl. This game was not one of the biggest upsets in Super Bowl history (Giants were 12 point underdogs), but probably also one of the most dramatic endings to any Super Bowl.

What an infathomable win. The Patriots were 18-0 going into the game, and tore through the regular season with complete dominance (sans close games against the Eagles, Ravens, and yes, the Giants in the regular season finale). At times, Eli Manning couldn't get out of the way of his own shadow, and Giants running backs just could not stay healthy for the duration of a single game.

The Giants made the team as a wild card, and won 3 straight road playoff games to reach the SB against the Pats.

The obvious key to the Giants win tonight was the unrelenting pressure the Giants put on Tom Brady. All season, Brady rarely had a dirty uniform, and often had loads of time to stand in the pocket and find his favorite receivers downfield. Tonight, Brady was on his heels from the start of the game as the defensive line led by Strahan and Umeniyora, were pressuring and sacking Brady throughout the game. Brady was able to hit Welker 11 times but couldn't connect with Moss deep at all. The Pats had no receptions over 20 yards.

The 2nd key was Eli Manning. I must confess, I was pretty critical of him about a month ago. He often looked bewildered, dumbfounded and apathetic on the field. However, this postseason, and especially in the Super Bowl game tonight, he was poised, emotional, and determined. The most incredible play of the night was the play on 3rd and 5 at NYG 44 with 1:15 remaining in the game. Eli took the snap in the shotgun formation, and was swarmed upon by at least two Patriots rushers. Eli looked like he was wrapped up for a sack and probably the end of the game. Somehow, someway, he kept his feet churning, and he kept spinning. He shook out of the grasp of both defenders, set himself, and hucked up a beautiful pass down the middle of the field to David Tyree. Tyree jumped up in between 2 defenders and snatched the ball from the air, and stabalized it against his helmet as he fell to the ground on his back with the defender right on top of him. What a play!!

Four plays later, Eli hit Burress in the left corner of the endzone for the go-ahead touchdown. Brady gets the ball back with 29 seconds left, and this time there was no "Brady magic". The Giants win 17-14.

I was wrong about my prediction on the game. I tip my hat to the New York Giants and Eli Manning. Let's hope the "Super Bowl Indicator" for the stock market (see previous post) holds, true, and the win by the original NFL NY Giants over the original AFL Patriots mean that we have a bull market in 2008.


Will said...

holy crap that was awesome. I'll put the 2007 Giants as the most improbable champion in team sports since I've been watching. You can't say enough about the D. Eli's 4th quarter for the ages was possible b/c the D kept them in it.

of all the people to call out for taking a Pats' victory for granted, let's put John Czarnecki at the top for LAST WEEK ranking the 19-0 Pats the 4th best team of all-time. and he probably makes more money than I do. Ok probably not but still

Bob said...

Cheaters got what they deserved! Kraft and Co applied for a trademark on "19-0 perfect season" on Jan 17th. There was a day when the Pats used that kind of stuff as motivation.

Not only do we get to watch Golden Boy and Belicheat go down in flames but we also get to watch SpyGate unfold. This is going to be great.

kath said...

Yes, that was seriously the best sports moment of my adult life. I just want to keep watching it over and over...

But for the sake of the blog conversation, what do people think about Belichick getting like 3 minutes to have his booth review the "12 men on the field" thing before throwing the challenge flag? I know it doesn't matter but while watching it, it seemed horribly unfair to give him that much time over a penalty that did not affect the plays and gave the Pats a first down. Again, you may argue that I should let it go because perhaps the Giants wouldn't have won had things gone any differently and the timing was unusual. But I think the NFL should place a time limit on how long a coach can throw a challenge flag. There were lots of earmuffs needed around that time in our house!