Ralph Vacchiano, SNY:
The New York Giants' road to Super Bowl LI begins in Green Bay, the site of two of the greatest triumphs of Eli Manning's career.
Their trip to Lambeau Field became official hours after the Giants finished up their 11-5 season with an impressive 19-10 win in Washington on Sunday afternoon. When the Packers (10-6) defeated the Detroit Lions 31-24 Sunday night, they clinched the NFC North title and the No. 4 seed in the NFC. That set up a date with the fifth-seeded Giants in the wild-card round Sunday at 4:40 p.m. ET.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons, Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions, Eli Manning, Green Bay Packers, Rashad Jennings, Seattle Seahawks, Shane Vereen, Ralph Vacchiano
The New York Giants will face the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field in the NFC wild-card round on Sunday at 4:40 p.m. ET in their first playoff appearance since winning Super Bowl XLVI.
Despite their 11-5 record being tied for second best in the NFC, the Giants are the No. 5 seed in the playoffs after they finished second in the NFC East to the 13-3 Dallas Cowboys.
The Packers, who have won six in a row, finished 10-6 and are the No. 4 seed following their 31-24 win over the Lions on Sunday at Ford Field.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons, Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions, Eli Manning, Green Bay Packers, Odell Beckham Jr., Seattle Seahawks
Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.TV:
As much as the New York Giants wanted to clinch their first playoff berth since 2011 on the field in Philadelphia on Thursday, they know it doesn't really matter how they get in - just as long as they get in. And they can still get in four different ways this weekend, before they even have to think about playing their finale in Washington on Jan. 1.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Washington Redskins, Ralph Vacchiano
Some things to watch for in the Giants-Falcons game on Sunday at MetLife Stadium (1 p.m.):
Eli Manning vs Falcons' defense: The Giants scored 75 points the past two games and Manning is completing 66.9 percent of his passes. The Falcons are 31st in pass defense, allowing 8.6 yards per pass play. They also only have three sacks. The Falcons will also be without SS William Moore (shoulder), who probably would be covering the Giants' emerging star TE, Larry Donnell. The Giants may also get a boost from the NFL debut of their top draft pick, WR Odell Beckham Jr.
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, New York Giants, NFL Week 5
The Loud Mouths panel compares defensive ends Osi Umenyiora and Justin Tuck and discusses who will sack the quarterback more in 2013.
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, Justin Tuck, New York Giants, NFL, NYG, Osi Umenyiora
From Rotoworld: ...Finally. This has been in the works for almost a week now, and it was just a matter of time before it was made official. The Dolphins were rumored to be sniffing around Umenyiora a little bit, but it never materialized to anything. Umenyiora, 31, brings some much needed juice to Atlanta's pass rush, but he essentially just replaces John Abraham. GM Thomas Dimitroff still needs to be on the lookout for more edge rushers. At this point, Umenyiora and Kroy Biermann are the starters at defensive end for the Falcons. Osi recorded 43 tackles and six sacks last season.
From Jenny Vrentas of the Star Ledger...
Per a source with knowledge of the situation, Umenyiora is expected to join the Falcons on Sunday or, at the latest, on Monday.
?Atlanta is the place,? the source said.
Osi expressed his desire to play for the Falcons on the Jamie and Jerome Show on 92.9 The Game on Friday. Co-Hosts Jamie Dukes and former Falcons Chuck Smith, who was subbing for Jerome Jurenovich, interviewed Umenyiora:It would be a fresh start for the 31-year-old pass specialist. The Falcons appear interested, but the price would have to right. Osi is said to be seeking in the upwards of $5 million per season. He might have wait and see how the free agent DE market shakes out first for Elvis Dumervil, Dwight Freeney and John Abraham before he learns his true market value.
?New York fans definitely expect a lot out of you because of their history,? Umenyiora said. ?There was nothing better than to be able to win there. The only thing I can think of that would be better than being able to win in New York would be to be able to win here in Atlanta. We?ll see how that plays out. Hopefully, it works out in a positive direction.?
The NFC Championship Game features the top two seeds for the first time in three years. The second-seeded San Francisco 49ers (12-4-1) return to the game for the second consecutive season. They lost, 20-17, to the Giants last year. The Atlanta Falcons (14-3) clinched the top seed in the NFC and won their first playoff game in the Mike Smith/Matt Ryan era last week vs the Seattle Seahawks.
Kickoff: 3:00pm Eastern
Falcons safety Chris Hope was fined $30,000 by the NFL after leveling Giants receiver Victor Cruz during the third quarter of Sunday's game. Hope received a 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty on the play, and the league fined him for striking an opponent in the head and neck area.
Hate to tell you so, but we called it at the time, and were a tad bit conservative on the fine....
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, Giants-Falcons, New York Giants, NFL
Mike Florio and Peter King of NBC Sports discuss the Giants' chances
- The Giants Martellus Bennett drops an Eli pass & the Falcons challenge will put the Giants in a 3rd and long situation.
- The Falcons are controlling the clock with good running plays and short passes. The Giants may only have one more drive left in this game.
Tags: 2012, 2012 New York Giants, ATLANTA FALCONS, david d, Eli Manning, Matt Ryan, New York Giants, NFC, NFL, Updates, Victor Cruz, week 15
CB Prince Amukamara (hamstring), RB Ahmad Bradshaw (knee, foot), S Tyler Sash (hamstring). S Kenny Phillips (knee), DT Marvin Austin, TE Adrien Robinson and DE Adewale Ojomo
David Wilson starts for Bradshaw. Jayron Hosley starts for Prince. RB Ryan Torain makes Giants debut.
Sam Spiegelman:?Though I believe New York is the superior football team, I lean toward Atlanta in this particular contest. The Falcons play on another level in the Georgia Dome, especially considering the circumstances in this game. Last week, Carolina embarrassed Atlanta -- add in the fact the Giants did the same in the Wildcard round of last year's playoffs. And let's be honest, the Giants have the ability to play a tremendous game and follow it up with a stinker. I won't say they won't be ready for this one, but the Falcons will play with a greater chip on their shoulders.?Atlanta 27, ?New York 20
Jim Mancari:?If there is a team in the NFL that can go on the road and beat the team with the best record, it's the New York Football Giants. Big Blue has had so much success on the road during the Eli Manning era that playing in a dome environment shouldn't phase them. The key to this game will be for the Giants' defense to limit the number of big plays. Roddy White and Julio Jones can score a touchdown every time they touch the ball, so the Giants need to force Matt Ryan into bad decisions. The 24-2 Falcons' playoff loss from last season is fresh in their minds, but now that Manning has a healthy receiving core, the Giants' offense is dangerous. Even with Ahmad Bradshaw banged up, "Turbo" Wilson will get plenty of touches. This is going to be an intense game, as the Falcons do not want to limp into the playoffs while the Giants want to keep their destiny in their own hands. Both teams have strong offenses, so defense will likely determine the outcome of this game.?Giants 24, Falcons 20
The NFC East-leading Giants (8-5) travel to Atlanta to face the 11-2 Falcons, who have already clinched the NFC South.
Kickoff: 1:00PM Eastern
Nicks (knee) practiced lightly on Thursday and is expected to do the same today. White (knee) has not practiced at all this week and is reported to be a game time decision. White has 77 receptions for 1,140 yards and 5 TDs this season.
From D.Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
Manning acknowledged that the Falcons are a tough team to beat at home, having won 10 straight in their own building.
?I think it just starts with just they?re a good team and so they do a good job of making plays and being sharp,? Manning said. ?Their offense seems like it does a lot of changing plays and getting into the right calls based on the defense and of course anytime they can be loud and show you different looks on the defensive side and make it difficult for the quarterback to change protection and those types of things puts them in any advantage.?
Tags: 2012 New York Giants, 24-2 giants falcons, ATLANTA FALCONS, Eli Manning, Giants-Falcons, manning, Matt Ryan, matty ice, NY Giants, playoffs, Editorial Aside
RB Ahmad Bradshaw (Knee/Foot), CB Prince Amukamara (Hamstring), LB Michael Boley (Back), WR Hakeem Nicks (Knee), DE Jason Pierre-Paul (Back), S Kenny Phillips (Knee), S Tyler Sash (Hamstring).?C David Baas (shoulder), TE Travis Beckum (knee) practiced in full.
Bradshaw has a sprained knee and is currently questionable to doubtful for Sunday. Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN NewYork has the latest on the Giants' RB:
White, who does not have a reputation to be much of a trash-talker, used the opportunity to nudge Cruz.
"?Victor Cruz is a lot more of a slot receiver; the big boys play on the outside,? White said.
Tags: 2012 New York Giants, Atlanta Falcons, Falcons, giants, Giants-Falcons, Hakeem Nicks, Julio Jones, Editorial Aside, Roddy White, Victor Cruz
While hosting their first playoff football game in four years (first at MetLife stadium), the Giants finally won a playoff game at home for the first time since 2000 by beating the Atlanta Falcons 24-2 on Sunday. And just like the time they beat the Vikings 41-0 in 2000, yesterday?s effort was nearly flawless.
The Giants dominated both sides of the ball in easily disposing of the Falcons. On this day it was all good, with very little (if any) bad or ugly.
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, New York Giants
Debuting playoff football at MetLife Stadium in a big way on Sunday afternoon has earned the New York Giants a return trip to a football shrine and a chance to extend their season further.
After spotting the fifth-seeded Atlanta Falcons (10-7) an early second-quarter safety, fourth-seeded New York (10-7) scored the final 24 points to dominate the Falcons, 24-2, in an NFC wild-card playoff game in East Rutherford, New Jersey to set up a rematch with the top-seeded and defending Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers (15-1) at historic Lambeau Field next week.
The Falcons have not won a playoff game under head coach Mike Smith (0-2). Their last playoff win was January 15, 2005 - a 47-17 thrashing of the St.Louis Rams in the NFC Divisional Playoffs.
When the Giants host the Falcons today, quarterbacks Eli Manning of New York (4,933) and Matt Ryan of Atlanta (4,177) will have the second-most combined passing yards (9,110) by opposing starting quarterbacks in a playoff game. The mark was set last night by New Orleans? Drew Brees (5,476) and Detroit's Matthew Stafford (5,038), who combined for 10,514 yards on 2011.
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, Giants-Falcons, New York Giants, New York Giants News, NFL Betting Odds, NFL Gambling, NFL Playoffs
The Giants host the Atlanta Falcons in the WildCard round of the NFC Playoffs, in the first postseason game ever at MetLife Stadium.
The all-time series between the Giants and Falcons is tied 10-10. The Giants have won the past 3 meetings, but the Falcons have?won 5 of the past 6 in New York.
After missing out the last two seasons, the Giants are back to a place they are familiar with: the playoffs. Sunday?s matchup with the Atlanta Falcons looks to be a game featuring two teams with similar styles and personnel.
The Falcons are a well-balanced group led by quarterback Matt Ryan, who is maturing into one of the league?s best quarterbacks. Ryan has a wealth of options on offense to turn to. Once again, this game has the makings of another shootout.
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, New York Giants
FalconsDOUBTFUL: LB Stephen Nicholas (toe) QUESTIONABLE: CB Brent Grimes (knee) PROBABLE: DE John Abraham (not injury related), DT Jonathan Babineaux (hamstring), RB Mike Cox (finger), WR Harry Douglas (groin), TE Tony Gonzalez (not injury related), DT Peria Jerry (calf), WR Julio Jones (thumb), TE Reggie Kelly (back), LB Curtis Lofton (ankle), C Todd McClure (not injury related), WR Kerry Meier (groin), S William Moore (groin), CB Christopher Owens (hand), TE Michael Palmer (knee), RB Jason Snelling (knee), RB Michael Turner (groin), LB Sean Weatherspoon (head), WR Roddy White (hip)
Many have speculated about how the Falcons, and specifically quarterback Matt Ryan, will perform after leaving the warmth of their dome and heading up north to MetLife Stadium. After taking a deeper look, I found a statistical anomaly that could play into the Giants' hands.
First, I looked at Ryan's passing statistics, and was surprised to find that he actually has a higher QB rating outdoors (94.2) than indoors (91.1).? His completion percentage is nearly identical in both settings, but his yards per attempt is considerably higher outdoors (7.75) than indoors (7.18).? His touchdown to interception ratio is 3:1 outdoors, and roughly 2:1 indoors.? So Matt Ryan is a better quarterback outdoors, right? Case closed. Everything?s wrapped up in a neat little package.
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, dirtbag, Falcons, giants, New York Giants, NFL Playoffs, Offensive Line, Standard
As I listen to the ringing of the bell in the intro of AC/DC?s Hells Bells, I always get goose bumps as it always reminds me of what Giant Stadium/MetLife Stadium is about: noise, passion and energy.
However, with the Giants moving into a newly constructed stadium, that mojo was lost as the Giants have been too passive and underwhelming and lost far too many games at home in the stadium?s two-year existence. Many of those losses have come via the head-scratching variety.
Giants, Falcons Ready To Receive on SundayIn order to compete and win in today?s NFL, a top-flight quarterback and some big-time playmakers he can target on a regular basis are absolute necessities.
The fifth-seeded Atlanta Falcons (10-6) and the fourth-seeded the New York Giants (9-7) have both as they get ready to square off against each other in an NFC wild-card playoff matchup at MetLife Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Not only do both teams have those components driving their offenses, but they mirror each other very closely.
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, Giants-Falcons, New York Giants, NFC, NFC WildCard Playoffs, NFL, NFL Playoffs
Lofton had 14 tackles and a 26-yard interception-return touchdown in the Falcons? 45-24 win over Tampa Bay.
In the second quarter, he recorded his third career interception and returned it 26 yards for his first career TD.
Atlanta Falcons' QB Matt Ryan is not considered among the elite in the NFL. He is, pretty damn good, though. If you check his stats Ryan is practically step-for-step with our Eli Manning, who is now being considered one of the league's top QBs:
Both QBs threw 29 TDs this season. Ryan had a 92.2 QB rating, just a liver below Eli's 92.9. Eli's completion percentage was 61% while Ryan's was a bit higher at 61.3. Eli averaged 36 attempts per game to Ryan's 35. ? Manning was 21st in the league when it came to getting sacked (28 times). Ryan was 29th with 26 sacks.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons, ATLANTA FALCONS, Giants-Falcons, Matt Ryan, New York Giants, New York Giants News, NFL Playoffs
Giants' CEO John Mara is a Boston College alum. His head coach, Tom Coughlin coached the Eagles from 1991-93 and had been an assistant there in the early 1980's. The Giants made headlines when they signed LB Mark Herzlich, the BC star whose victory over bone cancer has become an inspirational story for millions.
The Giants just recently brought back KR Will Blackmon, another BC alum who the team is entrusting with it's punt returning game.
Tags: ATLANTA FALCONS, boston college, Giants-Falcons, New York City, New York Giants, New York Giants News, NFL Playoffs
The playoffs are here! Let the festivities begin. The Giants are in the Super Bowl tournament for the first time since 2008 and hopes for another championship run are soaring.
The team is surging in a very similar manner to the way they did in 2007, when they stunned the football world by winning four consecutive games on the road, including Super Bowl XLII against the 18-0 New England Patriots.
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The Giants were one of the bottom-feeders of the NFL in those days and you can see why in this clip. They had very little on both sides of the ball. Ray Rhodes is actually still a receiver at this point in time!!!
The team was playing in Connecticut because the Meadowlands was being built and Yankee Stadium was being renovated.
?Everyone has an opinion and everyone has a right to voice it. But in the whole scheme of the matter, I don?t agree with it,? Tuck said.
?Maybe I would if I was coming from Arizona (as a free agent last spring) like he did. He?s coming into a completely different dimension. The Giants organization does things completely different than Arizona.
Tags: Antrel Rolle, Arizona, ATLANTA FALCONS, David Akers, Justin Tuck, New York Giants, New York Giants News, Pro Bowl, Star-Ledger
Quarterback Aaron Rodgers was nearly flawless at the Georgia Dome on Saturday night, completing 31 of 36 passes for 366 yards and three touchdowns, while avoiding a turnover, leading sixth-seeded Green Bay (12-6) to a 48-21 thrashing of the top-seeded Atlanta Falcons (13-4).
What was expected to be a rematch reminder of the Falcons? 20-17 win over the Packers in the final seconds in Atlanta in Week 12 became a record night for Rodgers and Green Bay.
Tags: aaron rodgers, Atlanta, ATLANTA FALCONS, Brett Favre, Georgia Dome, Green Bay Packer, Matt Ryan, New York Giants Blogs, NFC, NFC Championship Game, NFL, NFL Playoffs, Tramon Williams
Tags: aaron rodgers, Atlanta, ATLANTA FALCONS, Georgia Dome, Green Bay Packer, Green Bay Packers, Matt Ryan, National Football Conference, National Football League, New York Giants Blogs, NFC, NFL, NFL Playoffs
Tags: aaron rodgers, ATLANTA FALCONS, Brett Favre, Green Bay Packers, John Elway, Matt Ryan, Michael Vick, NFC, NFL, NFL Playoffs, Phil Simms
Only one of the top four preseason NFC favorites to win Super Bowl XLV are still alive: the sixth-seeded Green Bay Packers.? They were listed as second favorites by Bodog at 12-1 along with the Minnesota Vikings and the Dallas Cowboys.
Tags: aaron rodgers, ATLANTA FALCONS, Chicago Bears, Green Bay Packers, matt hasselbeck, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, New York Giants Blogs, NFC, NFC Championship Game, NFC East, NFL, NFL Playoffs, Seattle Seahawks, Super Bowl
That includes three sub-.500 NFC West teams (St.Louis, Seattle and San Francisco) and the 5-6 Washington Redskins. The Redskins' chances are slim since they would have to win every game the rest of the season and hope for some divine intervention along the way to qualify for the post season.
The West winner will most likely be the only entrant into the NFC Playoffs from that bracket, so we will not include them in any of our league-wide scenarios going forward unless something dramatic occurs.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, New York Giants Blogs, New York Giants News, New York Jets, NFC, NFC Championship Game, NFC East, NFL, Philadelphia Eagles, St. Louis Rams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Washington Redskins
NFC?s Top Seed Might Not Matter for Most in Contention
By the week before Thanksgiving, at least one or two teams in each NFL conference usually emerge as the conference?s elite, just ahead of the next tier of contenders.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons, Green Bay Packers, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, New York Giants Blogs, New York Giants News, NFC, NFC East, NFL, Philadelphia Eagles
The two teams are still haggling over what draft pick the Eagles will be trading. The Eagles are willing to trade a third-round pick for Gonzalez, the Chiefs are looking for a second-round draft pick.
Pro Football Talk reports that the Eagles and Falcons also have interest in Oklahoma State tight end Brandon Pettigrew.