Giants vs Patriots Predictions: 6 Bold Predictions for the Giants Offense
We are less than a week away from one of the most anticipated rematches in Super Bowl history.
The Giants offense has been playing very well since the end of December, scoring 141 points in the last five games, which averages out to 28.2 points per game.
From the beginning of the playoffs, I have said that when Eli Manning plays well, the Giants win. So far, that statement has held up, which is why the Giants will be playing in Indianapolis on Sunday.
How will the Giants play against the Patriots defense this Sunday?
Here are six bold predictions that I think will happen in the Super Bowl for the Giants offense.
Combined, Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs Will Have over 100 Yards
In their Week 9 game back on Nov. 6, 2011, the Giants were missing Ahmad Bradshaw as he was out with an injury, so Brandon Jacobs had to shoulder the load.
Jacobs actually stepped up, carrying the ball 18 times for 72 yards with a touchdown and had four catches for 28 yards.
The running game hasn't been their strength this season, but during the playoffs, Bradshaw and Jacobs have both combined to help the Giants.
In the NFC Championship Game, it was Bradshaw who had the better game and even caught a huge pass from Eli Manning to keep a drive alive.
In Super Bowl XLII, both Jacobs and Bradshaw shared the carries and combined for 87 total yards.
In Week 9, Bradshaw was MIA, and Jacobs alone had 100 total yards.
Between the two of them on Sunday, I think they combined will have anywhere between 100-130 total yards.
Jake Ballard Is Due
The Giants new starting tight end has barely been a factor in the playoffs.
Against the Falcons, Ballard caught two passes for 16 yards.
Against the Packers, Ballard caught one pass for 17 yards.
Against the 49ers, Ballard did not have a single catch.
I think Jake Ballard is due to have a big game. He's been due for a while now.
In fact, the last time Ballard even had resemblance of a big game was Week 14, when the Giants knocked off the Cowboys.
Ballard had four catches for 52 yards and a touchdown.
Against the Patriots in Week 9, Ballard caught four passes for 67 yards, including the game-winning one-yard touchdown that helped the Giants defeat New England at Gillette Stadium.
Ballard is a big part of the offense, and he needs to step up.
What better way for him to step up than on the biggest stage.
Victor Cruz Has over 100 Yards and a Touchdown
What a season for Victor Cruz.
If not for Cruz, the Giants aren't in the playoffs and are not in the Super Bowl on Sunday.
In the NFC Championship Game, Cruz had 10 catches for 142 yards and made several key third down catches to keep Giants drives going.
Cruz has been a play-maker for the Giants and a huge deep threat, and has been impossible to stop when he gets going.
Against the Patriots in Week 9, Cruz had six catches for 91 yards, and that was without Hakeem Nicks in the game.
The problem defensive backs are having is trying to double-cover both Nicks and Cruz, because one of them ends up being wide open for big plays.
Eli Manning has relied heavily on Cruz, and that won't change on Sunday.
I expect at least one long touchdown pass from Manning to Cruz in this game.
Hakeem Nicks Catches Two Touchdown Passes
Hakeem Nicks has been a monster in the playoffs.
Last week against the 49ers in the NFC Championship Game, Nicks sprained his shoulder while getting tackled on a catch he made.
Nicks ended up with five catches for 55 yards but no touchdowns. The 49ers secondary was a bruising one and was very tough on the Giants wide receivers.
I think Nicks will have recovered enough to have his shoulder just fine for the Super Bowl this Sunday.
A lot of people forgot that Nicks missed the Week 9 matchup between the Giants and Patriots.
Having Nicks out there along with Victor Cruz and Mario Manningham makes the wide receiver corps that more dangerous.
And the Patriots secondary will have a hard time trying to stop Nicks from making big plays on the field.
I foresee Nicks catching two big touchdowns from Eli Manning.
He might not have over 100 yards, but if the Giants get into the red zone, Nicks becomes the go-to guy when New England double covers Cruz.
Eli Manning Throws for over 300 Yards and Three Touchdowns
In Eli Manning, the Giants fans trust.
When he goes, the offense goes.
When he plays well, the Giants win. Which is why the Giants are playing on Sunday night.
Manning lives for the big games. And he lives for playing in the clutch moments.
In Super Bowl XLII, he threw the game-winning touchdown pass to Plaxico Burress.
In Week 9, he threw the game-winning touchdown pass to Jake Ballard.
And during the 2011 season, Manning led the Giants to six fourth-quarter comebacks for victories.
Despite playing against one of the top defenses and in some rainy conditions last week, Manning still threw for over 300 yards and two touchdowns against the 49ers.
The Patriots defense and secondary isn't the same as the 49ers. In fact, if Lee Evans hangs onto the ball and doesn't get it swatted out of his hands, the Giants are playing the Ravens and not the Patriots.
Joe Flacco had a very good game against them. And I think Eli will too.
In this game, I see Manning with around 300-335 yards passing with at least three touchdowns.
Eli Manning Wins Super Bowl XLVI MVP Award
Eli lives for the big stage. He does not get fazed by playing in these games.
And he's playing in his brother's city and building in Indianapolis.
What better fitting way for Manning to cement his NFL legacy by not only winning a Super Bowl, but winning the Super Bowl MVP Award as well.
It would be his second time winning it, and then you would never have to hear again that Eli Manning isn't elite.
That talk would stop.
On Sunday, because I predict Eli will throw for over 300 yards and three touchdowns, I see him getting the MVP Award trophy.