The Giants' dismantling of the defending champion Packers at Lambeau Field last night was a thrill for all fans of the Blue, but in the overall scheme of things it was just Chapter Two.
Chapter Three will be another daunting task: Jim Harbaugh's rough-and-tumble 49ers at Candlestick Park. The advantage will go to the hosts (San Fran is a 2 1/2 point morning line favorite), but the Giants are the more experienced post-season team.
The way these two teams have been playing, there's no way even the most pedestrian fan can resist.
"For us to come in here and win, we knew we would have to play one of our best games and I think we did that," said Giants' defensive captain Justin Tuck. "I don’t think they have anything to hang their heads about. I just think it just seems like our time.”
It sure is. The Packers were supposed to be the unstoppable force coming into this game - averaging 35 points per. The Giants? A bunch of underachievers that got lucky four years ago and have a propensity of underperforming in the spotlight.
It didn't turn out that way. The Giants came to play. The Packers, perhaps still reeling from the tragic death of OC Joe Philbin's son, did not. They fumbled, dropped passes and lacked the sharpness that makes them so dangerous. In light of things, it is understandable.
Ironically, Aaron Rodgers' legs were more lethal than his arm last night. He missed receivers all night and was flushed from the pocket more than he is accustomed to. He ran for a team-high 66 yards and made five first downs with his legs. The Giants happily took that over the usual four TD passes he hangs on them.
But this game is over. Slice it up for the next day or so, but then its time to focus on San Francisco. There is more work to do....and a chip on their shoulder...
"Everybody wrote us off. They always do that," said DE Osi Umenyiora, who had two sacks of Aaron Rodgers last night. "So we’re just going to keep on fighting and keep on playing hard and hopefully we’ll keep things going.”
...and going, and going...