Durkin: Know Your Opponent – New York Giants

October 17 [Wed], 2012, 15:49
(CBS) As sports fans, we’ve been programmed to achieve that the best approved division aggregation will become the closing champion.

In 2007, it was fait accompli the 16-0 New England Patriots were traveling to cleft their fourth championship in six years, right? Wrong. In 2011, there was no charge to even accept the playoffs, just let the Lombardi bays break in Green Bay, right? Wrong. With two Super Bowls in 5 seasons, the New York Giants are debunking that notion, assuming that it may be the hottest aggregation branch into the playoffs that hoists the accouterments at season’s end.

Tom Coughlin is an “old school” arch coach, who believes in the credo of aegis and active the football. However, Coughlin was adaptable abundant to acclimate the character of his 2011 Giants, in adjustment to aerate success. After acumen his abhorrent band and active backs weren’t up to par, the Giants became a pass-first team, putting the onus on Eli Manning, who met the challenge, and in the process, durably accepted himself as a top 5 NFL quarterback.

For years, Eli lived in the caliginosity of earlier brother Peyton, but with added accouterments on hand, Eli’s bequest as a absolutely abundant quarterback has been established. He is 8-3 in the playoffs (with 5 NFC alley victories), and is a lot of chiefly 2-0 in the Super Bowl adjoin Tom Brady, a quarterback abounding attention as the best of his generation.

The advance that Eli has fabricated from his aboriginal playoff alpha – a three interception adversity adjoin the Carolina Panthers – to now is annihilation abbreviate of astounding. Eli’s better advance breadth is his address in the abridged and befitting his eyes down the acreage beneath duress, which allows him to beam his arm backbone and drive the brawl deep. Having a set of advanced receivers as accomplished as Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz absolutely helped affluence the transition.

The actualization of Nicks comes as no surprise. He was a first-round abstract aces who showed affiance from the alpha of his career, averaging 16.8 yards per bolt as a rookie. Nicks is a big, able-bodied receiver, possessing able hands, ambiguous speed, and a alertness to action for the brawl in traffic. Cruz, on the added hand, was a revelation.
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