Indianapolis – The New York Giants defeated the New England Patriots in Superbowl XLVI Sunday night 21-17. Eli Manning won his second Superbowl MVP after orchestrating yet another fourth quarter comeback. Tom Coughlin also won his second Superbowl title as the Giants head coach. After a season almost lost to the NFL lockout the New York Giants end this campaign as World Champions.
The Patriot’s defense started the game hot recording two sacks on the opening drive to force a Giants punt. Brady had ample time on his first offensive snap as he dropped back into the end zone, but threw a pass deep down field that soared over any receiver in the area and resulted in a safety. Justin Tuck came in late with pressure to force the errant throw.
After the safety, the Giants received the ball back and methodically drove down the field on the following drive. The Patriots stood tall in the red zone and forced a Victor Cruz fumble that was overturned due to a 12 men on the field penalty. Victor Cruz took advantage of the second chance and converted a 2 yard reception for a touchdown.
Brady and the Patriots offense regrouped to start the second quarter. They successfully drove down the field but ended up stalling just shy of the red zone, resulting in a 29 yard field goal from Stephen Gostkowski.
Both defenses stepped up as the next three drives resulted in punts, with the final one coming from Steve Weatherford who pinned the Patriots in deep at the four yard line.The Patriots started off the drive with a false start play, but through numerous clutch receptions from Aaron Hernandez,
Tom Brady calmly drove the team down the field as the game neared halftime. On third and four, Brady dropped back with significant time due to great containment from the Patriots offensive line. After scanning the end zone Brady found Danny Woodhead for a four yard touchdown reception, giving the New England Patriots a 10-9 lead going into halftime.
After a miserable start and atypical errors from the New England Patriots, Tom Brady somehow found a way to bring his team into halftime with a one point lead.
Chad Ochocinco made his Super Bowl debut, tallying a 21 yard reception on the opening drive of the second half. The Giants defense came out for the second half looking sluggish giving up two crucial runs to BenJarvus Green-Ellis, one being a third and one conversion that brought the Patriots into the red zone. Tom Brady cashed the drive in for six when he found Aaron Hernandez from twelve yards out bouncing off a defender into the end zone.
The Giants were able to answer, converting their own significant third down conversion to Hakeem Nicks. Unfortunately for the Giants, the drive came to a screeching halt when Patrick Chung laid an enormous hit on Nicks as he attempted a catch in Patriot’s territory. Holding true to their bend but don’t break reputation, the Patriots defense was able hold the Giants to a 38 yard Lawrence Tyne’s field goal.
After stopping the Patriots drive, the Giants caught another break on a Hakeem Nicks fumble that bounced fortuitously back towards fullback Henry Hynoski. The Giants again had to settle for a field goal attempt which Tynes converted from 33 yards out with a half a minute left to play in the third quarter.
After avoiding onrushing Giants, Brady took a deep shot down field to tight end Rob Gronkowski. Linebacker, Chase Blackburn, made an outstanding play on the football and reeled in an interception.
With ten minutes left in the fourth quarter the Patriots got the ball back at their own 8 yard line. Wes Welker uncharacteristically dropped a catch that would have set the Patriots up around the Giants 25 yard line. After failing to convert on third and eleven the Patriots punted the ball back to the Giants with about four minutes left.
Eli Manning came out and took a deep shot down field to Manningham who made a spectacular 33 yard reception while tapping his feet in bounds just before taking a huge hit. The Giants continued to work time off the clock until getting down inside the ten yard line where the Patriots began to use their time outs. On second and six Ahmad Bradshaw took a carry up the middle and smartly attempted to kneel at the one yard line but his momentum carried him in for the touchdown with 57 seconds still left on the clock. Brandon Jacobs two point conversion attempt was stopped short of the goal line leaving the Giants with a 21-17 lead.
The Patriots got the ball back on the twenty for the final drive and after two drops and a sack they found themselves in a fourth and sixteen situation. Brady made a brilliant play to avoid the rush and found Deion Branch open down field to convert the first down. One more reception and a 12 men on the field penalty by the Giants put the Patriots on the 50 yard line for one final hail-mary attempt. Brady dropped back and launched one downfield into the end zone where it was tipped in the air and fell to the turf just out of reach for a diving Rob Gronkowski.
Final Score: Giants 21 Patriots 17