Why The Giants Will Win

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Defense Is A Wash – Yes, the Ravens have a tremendous defensive unit. However, the Giants are not Swiss cheese, either. During the stretch runs, both defenses played about as well.

The Giants Have A Better Offense Than The Ravens – Even Giant fans can barely believe that.

The Giants never score a lot. Forget the Minnesota game; that was like watching the Giants part the Red Sea. Even Moses didn’t go back a couple weeks later and try it again.

(Governor Ventura should invite his old wrestling buddies over, split open the Metrodome, and make the renamed Wimpies play in the cold until they live down that choke. Who ever heard of the old Vikings sailing in a domed boat, anyway?)

Winning Giant football is “we score more than twenty points a game, and you don’t.”

Giant teams historically find the first much harder than the second. Good Giant teams can always run. What they need to be reminded of is that forward passes are now legal in football, and that it’s OK to catch the ball when the quarterback finds nothing better to do than throw it to them.

They often forget that, sometimes for years, but not now. Kerry Collins doesn’t seem to mind throwing the ball and the receivers don’t seem to mind catching it.

Kerry is selfish enough to just let other Giants catch the ball, unlike some recent equal opportunity Giant passers who must have believed that “Sharing Is Caring” when it came to possession.

However, he is not so selfish about the ball that he can’t bear to let it go and ends up playing fetus to pigskin placenta, another favorite play of some recent Giant quarterbacks.

The Giants never need an Elway imitator. Just someone good enough to make enough passes at the Ravens and hit on them enough so they can’t count on the Giants always playing “They do run-run-run, they do run, run” on the offensive jukebox.

It’s not pretty, it’s not exciting, it just works.

Will the Giants score more than twenty today? Probably not, but that’s OK. The Giants are used to not getting bushels of points, so when the Ravens stall them; they won’t get frustrated. After all, the other side will hardly be doing any better.

The Raven offense is probably the worst to ever get to a Super Bowl. Outside of beating up cripples, the Raven offense hasn’t done much, and they’re getting worse, not better.

The Raven defense should go before Judge Judy and sue for lack of support.

Down the stretch, Mr. Dilfer has looked like Dilbert on offense. The Ravens only have playoff defensive statistics on their website, a wise move. If you have nothing good to say about someone, say nothing at all.

The Ravens have one good running back, and that’s it. Stop him, and Giant fans start chanting, “Throw, Trent, throw.” This is never a good sign.

Oh yes, Shannon Sharpe. Not so sharp against the Giants the last few years.

If the Ravens had a reasonably diversified offense, they’d win. Their defense is probably a bit better; their special teams probably are, too.

But they don’t. Too few weapons that can be keyed upon, and good Giant teams are well-disciplined, they don’t make many mistakes.

Intangibles

NFC Vs. AFC

No, I’m not an NFC bigot. It’s just a matter of playing philosophy, and a few of the smarter AFC teams, the Ravens being one of them, have adapted the NFC style of play.

However, the Ravens don’t get to play a lot of NFC teams where smash-mouth football is inbred, and their performance this year against reasonably competent NFC teams is less than encouraging.

Tradition

The Giants have been there before. They’ll have LT and Harry Carson and other veterans of past Super Bowls there. Guys who did it recently; guys who can inspire the players.

In contrast, whom do the Ravens have? Only older football history buffs will recall an Otto Graham and the AAFC or Jim Brown. To athletes, that is ancient history, and it happened in another city, to boot.

Distractions

The Giants have been ignored during the media hype. This is always a good idea. When the teams are fairly even, the more distracted team loses.

Ironically, for a team that lives in one of the biggest media centers in the world; the Giants have always been relatively faceless. The only Giant media star in the last generation was LT.

I think the ownership has a lot to do with it. The team is still half-owned by the family that founded it, and they remember the days when players that stuck out were called “hotdogs” and winning was more important than getting on the TV clips.

Not that media coverage isn’t intense in New York, it is. It is just wise to keep your mouth shut if you want to keep playing on Mr. Mara’s team, national media coverage or not.

The Ravens aren’t used to relentless media coverage, and it shows.

Conclusions

I feel badly about the Ravens. The city, the fans, and the defensive unit are all great, and they don’t deserve this prevent offense.

The Ravens can win this game, simply because they are playing the Giants. However, when your offense is usually an innocent bystander when it comes to scoring, that’s pretty offensive, and a terrible burden for a defense to bear. So far they’ve managed, but now they’re facing an opponent defense roughly as good.

If the Giants do what they reasonably can be expected to do: don’t make mistakes and stop the run, they should win. If they don’t do those, they’ll lose. The Raven defense will then be deservedly enshrined in the football pantheon for dragging this team to glory, because I just don’t see how the Ravens can win with offense.

If either team gets ahead by 14, turn the TV set off. You already know who won.

Final Score:

Giants 16 Ravens 10

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