The New York Giants Embrace the Underdog Role

Amit BatraCorrespondent IIIMay 8, 2012

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 05:  Quarterback Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants poses with the Vince Lombardi Trophy after the Giants defeated the Patriots by a score of 21-17 in Super Bowl XLVI at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 5, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Fresh off of another Super Bowl victory, NFL fans have learned that the New York Giants have embellished the underdog role in both of their Super Bowl wins in the last five years.  For a team that finished 9-7 in the regular season, Giants fans were skeptical of making a deep run in the playoffs. 

But when Eli Manning is playing to his potential, the Giants can go as far as he takes them. 

The wide receiver corps was tops in the NFL with Mario Manningham, Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks making some incredible plays.  This upcoming season will see the NY Giants face a tough schedule, but that doesn't necessarily mean things will go haywire. 

The Giants played with a great deal of confidence in the last few regular season games and the playoffs.  Manning had a lot of weapons and even the running game showed glimpses of life in the late stages of the season. 

The Giants will have their work cut out for them with games against Pittsburgh, San Francisco, Green Bay, New Orleans, Atlanta and Baltimore.  The Giants do, however, rise to the occasion against higher levels of competition.

Manning will have a lot of weapons to consider this season.  Manning lost Manningham to San Francisco, but did get deeper with the likes of LSU's wide receiver Rueben Randle and tight ends Martellus Bennett and Adrien Robinson.  These additions were crucial with early injuries to tight ends Jake Ballard and Travis Beckum 

The running game could be better without Brandon Jacobs and the addition of Virginia Tech's David Wilson to go along Ahmad Bradshaw and D.J. Ware. Domenik Hixon has also shown that he's a capable wide receiver with the Giants in the past.

Tom Coughlin made some key additions to get players in which his team lost.  Lose Brandon Jacobs and Mario Manningham, pick up David Wilson and Rueben Randle.  Both the offensive and defensive lines should continue to improve. 

Jason Pierre-Paul had an incredible season last year with 86 tackles and 16.5 sacks.  He's only going to improve too.  If Justin Tuck and Osi Umenyiora (if on the team) stay healthy, the defensive line will be the one that fans know and love from the Giants.

Terrell Thomas will be healthy again as will cornerback Prince Amukamara.  The loss of Aaron Ross could be a good thing with his habits of blowing coverage.  To say the Giants had the 29th ranked pass defense is just unusual.  That will certainly improve if players remain healthy. 

If the 2007 and 2011 seasons tell us anything, it's that the Giants are capable of making a deep run as an underdog.  When they play with confidence, the Giants are a tough out.  With looking at the schedule, NFL fans will not say the New York Giants are a favorite to defend their championships. 

With the low expectations, the Giants could surprise some people.