The Patriots once won games and championships based on their defense, but that is no longer the case. The Giants have relied on their defense to save multiple games and their season, and without the infamous goal-line stand of Week 3, the Giants probably aren’t playing in the Super Bowl. Actually, they definitely aren’t playing the Super Bowl and they probably finish the season around .500 or less and Elite is the goat of the city. However, that is not the case, though I am sure the bitter, heartbroken, embarrassed, devastated Dallas fans who chime in on this site wish it was.
But this week, Michael Strahan and Osi Umenyiora will chase around the limping Tom Brady hoping to have him removed from the game and the Patriots playing for their season behind Matt Cassel. Though it would take being confined to a wheelchair to keep Brady off the field, and even then he might still take snaps.
Asante Samuel, Ellis Hobbs, and Rodney Harrison will be circling the secondary for stray passes all game long, and the moment Eli evades his intended target, the Patriots offense will take the field. Strange that right this second on ESPN, Sean Sailsbury just said, “Can Eli Manning continue to protect the football?” Well, if he can’t the Giants lose, and if he can the Giants still might lose. Not be cause the Patriots defense is necessarily that good, but because the Giants defense has to be better.
Plax ran his mouth saying the Giants D would give uo 17 points, two TDs and a FG if you can’t count. The last time the Patriots scored 17 points this season was….never. The fewest points the Pats scored this season was 11 days ago against the Chargers in the AFC Championship.
The Giants defense needs a couple three and outs, they need to keep their legs fresh, and they need to get off the field in a timely fashion. This isn’t the Dallas Cowboys offense here. The Patriots aren’t going to put together 11 minutes drives and come away with three points. They put together drives to put you away, not let you hang around until the fourth quarter.
Age has been widely talked about with the New England defense and obviously this isn’t the same D that won the 2001 Super Bowl vs St. Louis, but they are part of an 18-0 whether you want to give all the credit to the offense or not. Tedy Bruschi and Junior Seau can still play football and Vince Wilfork and Richard Seymour aren’t going anywhere either. And you can add Mike Vrabel and Adalius Thomas in there for good measure too. Name another team aside from the one you root for where there are so many household football names on a defense. You can’t.
The key for the Giants defense is for Strahan, Osi, and Justin Tuck to create chaos. And if and when a play is made it is Antonio Pierce and Kawika Mitchell who need to make anyone in a blue shirt pay the price. But the most important part ven bigger is for Sam Madison, Aaron Ross, Gibril Wilson, and Corey Webster to not get burnt. I am sure everyone remembers Randy Moss’ drop in Week 17 wide open, only to be followed by the next play of the same exact route that broke the single season TD record. Strong coverage on the sequence by the G-Men.
Tom Brady stands in the pocket like a statue. He is protected like Fort Knox and he surrounded by pillars that are the human equivalent to the Great Wall of China. It will be hard or the Giants to penetrate the offensive line of New England, but if they can get in there, for the first time this season Tom Brady might have to scramble to make a play.
The talk all week has been Eli and Tom. Plax and Randy. Offense vs offense. It’s about time the talk shifts to defense vs defense because whoever is better for 60 minutes on Sunday will be Super Bowl champions.
Tags: NFL Playoffs