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Belichick before game-winning drive: “Make them go to Manningham”

Super Bowl XLVI Getty Images

As expected, Patriots coach Bill Belichick planned to defend the Giants in Super Bowl XLVI by taking away what the Giants do best.  And that meant shutting down receivers Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks.

So before what became the Giants’ game-winning drive, NFL Films microphones caught Belichick giving this directive to his team, via ESPNBoston.com:   “This is still a Cruz-and-Nicks game.  I know we’re right on them.  It’s tight, but those are still the guys.  Make them go to Manningham, make them go to [Bear] Pascoe.  Let’s make sure we get Cruz and Nicks.”

The Giants indeed went to Manningham, and Manningham made an uncanny catch of a perfect 38-yard throw from quarterback Eli Manning to spark the effort that allowed the Giants to win the game.

Though Manningham didn’t have huge numbers, reliance on him in one of the game’s biggest moments meshed with something former Colts coach Tony Dungy had been saying last week.  In the 2006 AFC title game, during which the Pats raced to a 21-3 lead, Belichick found a way to take away both Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne.  The Colts then adjusted, targeting tight end Dallas Clark and taking advantage of opportunities in the running game.

And so with Belichick so determined to take away what the opposing offense does best and with opposing offenses now figuring it out, the chess match needs to move to the next level, with Belichick making the enemy think he’ll be taking away the top weapons and then pouncing on the guy to whom the ball will actually go.

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112 Responses to “Belichick before game-winning drive: “Make them go to Manningham””
  1. rexismybff says: Feb 9, 2012 9:14 PM

    A lot harder when you don’t know all the opposing play calls, eh coach??

  2. sowcrates says: Feb 9, 2012 9:16 PM

    “And so with Belichick so determined to take away what the opposing offense does best and with opposing offenses now figuring it out, the chess match needs to move to the next level, with Belichick making the enemy think he’ll be taking away the top weapons and then pouncing on the guy to whom the ball will actually go.”

    ——————

    Or his own guys could catch the ball on ending drives…

  3. db105 says: Feb 9, 2012 9:16 PM

    Successful head coaches all make strategy adjustments. There’s a reason why this guy wins at a higher rate than others.

  4. nyjalleffingday says: Feb 9, 2012 9:17 PM

    “Custer’s luck! The biggest Indian Village on the Continent!”

    -General George Custer

  5. zaggs says: Feb 9, 2012 9:17 PM

    “the chess match needs to move to the next level, with Belichick making the enemy think he’ll be taking away the top weapons and then pouncing on the guy to whom the ball will actually go.”

    Depends on the QB. Eli didn’t waste a whole lotta time deciding to go to Rio on that play. Pats would have been in worse shape if Ballard had been healthy.

  6. lemmam says: Feb 9, 2012 9:19 PM

    Eli took what Belichick gave him. And it worked out for the Giants at the end.

  7. ampats says: Feb 9, 2012 9:19 PM

    Mannings pass and Manningham’s catch were nothing short of perfect. A few plays a few drops thats the game. Congrats to the Giants fans but play this game again 10 times on a neutral field its 5-5.

  8. cardmagnet says: Feb 9, 2012 9:20 PM

    Four out of five times, Manningham drops that pass and Belichick plan works. Luckily, this was that 1-in-5 time to help the Giants win.

  9. commandercornpone says: Feb 9, 2012 9:21 PM

    uh… bill… how did THAT work out?

  10. skinsnation703 says: Feb 9, 2012 9:22 PM

    That they did.

  11. tjjohnson98 says: Feb 9, 2012 9:22 PM

    Now, a clever man would put the poison into his own goblet, because he would know that only a great fool would reach for what he was given. I am not a great fool, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you. But you must have known I was not a great fool, you would have counted on it, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of me.

    Inconceivable!

  12. LoCoSu@%s says: Feb 9, 2012 9:29 PM

    and what is the story here?

  13. hardoguy says: Feb 9, 2012 9:33 PM

    Ouch, poor Billy Boy.

    Just no defense for a perfect pass folks.

    As a Giants fan, this whole exchange followed by the play is pretty damn sweet.

  14. httr73 says: Feb 9, 2012 9:34 PM

    Wait. What? The coach of the loosing team said something that didn’t work? What a shock.

  15. oxfordthecat says: Feb 9, 2012 9:34 PM

    When exactly did the definition of a “perfect throw” in football change to: “A ball rifled into double coverage that relies on a receiver making an extraordinary effort to catch the pass that otherwise would be either intercepted or an incomplete pass 9 times out of 10″ ?

  16. benmci says: Feb 9, 2012 9:34 PM

    I think it’s safe to say that you throw that same pass to him under the same circumstances he either drops it or doesn’t get both feet in, but guess what doesn’t matter. Just like Belichicks plan on the Thursday after the big game- Giants are still Super Bowl champs. Patriots are still a great team but are 4 feet and a dropped hail mary from winning. Life as we know still goes on

  17. dirtmcgirt24 says: Feb 9, 2012 9:34 PM

    He’ll need, you know, a defense to pull that off. It’ll look like media-portrayed genius as usual next year while Pats get fat off of AFC greats like Moore, Sanchez, Fitzpatrick, Flacco, McCoy, Tebow, Palmer, Gabbert, etc. But when he gets beat in the Super Bowl by one of Rodgers, Manning, Brees, Stafford, the collective narrative will be “Oh my god, how did they beat the great Bill Belichick!?”

  18. fissels says: Feb 9, 2012 9:34 PM

    How’d that work out?

  19. paulieorkid says: Feb 9, 2012 9:39 PM

    By no means am I a Patriot fan, but Belichick coached a very good game and an even better season. Taking the Patriots to a Conference Top Seed and a Conference Title a whisker from another Super Bowl Title is very impressive. Even the hail mary was very very well-designed, and almost executed perfectly.

    As for the Manningham catch, Belichick was absolutely right in placing his defensive focus on Cruz and Nicks. It took an incredible catch with almost no margin for error coupled with an epic pass with no margin at all for error. The degree of difficulty in such an execution is off the charts.

    Also, all these chowds ripping Brady are out of line too. What a bunch of ingrates. Not talking about all Patriots fans — just the whiny, miserable and bitter chowds whose bloodlust for a scapegoat is unparallelled in sports.

    Brady QB’d a very very good game … until Tuck trashed his already damaged shoulder. The drop in Brady’s play was precipitous after that — due in large part to taking that hit from Tuck.

    Lots in Patriot Nation are classy, but a good many in Patriot Nation oughtta grow up – and be more appreciative of their HOF-bound HC and QB.

  20. mnlittle says: Feb 9, 2012 9:40 PM

    This Superbowl victory by the giants will always be tainted by a safety call that should not have been made. Chalk this up to the league office giving a helping hand to the home team.

  21. txxxchief says: Feb 9, 2012 9:41 PM

    Looks to me like he got what he wanted. Are there cracks forming in the Patriots foundation?

  22. steelybills says: Feb 9, 2012 9:45 PM

    I think this article would be considerably better without that last paragraph.

  23. truthfactory says: Feb 9, 2012 9:45 PM

    Even if they were planning on shutting down Nicks and Cruz, Manningham was still well covered on that play. Tight throw and great catch… nothin you can do but tip your cap to them.

  24. nflfan555 says: Feb 9, 2012 9:46 PM

    Manningham was lucky – makes that catch 1 in a 100, it was the right move… Giants were outplayed

  25. towniesman says: Feb 9, 2012 9:49 PM

    gettin to the big game with that roster….Bill is simply the best

  26. cmb79 says: Feb 9, 2012 9:51 PM

    Whoops.

  27. superfbfan says: Feb 9, 2012 9:52 PM

    Great throw and catch…its not like he was left wide open.

  28. thatobnoxiousguy says: Feb 9, 2012 9:53 PM

    “Make them go to Manningham”

    ********************************

    That Belichek sure is a Genius………….NOT!

    The fraud, the”genius” so tabbed by the East Coast media, the cheater, got schooled by the TRUE genius………Tom Coughlin.

    No legitimate Lombardis, an undeserved “genius” label, and classless in victory AND defeat…………thats what Belichik has.

    When will people realize the guy is no different than his days in Cleveland……he just got some very lucky breaks and cheated his way to titles.

  29. ktcmoving says: Feb 9, 2012 9:58 PM

    “the chess match needs to move to the next level…”

    Not really.

    You make them go to Manningham precisely because he’s not consistent enough to be considered a top receiver. Just because he made one big catch and somehow managed to get his feet down in this particular case does not invalidate the long term strategy of taking away Cruz and Nicks, who are not only more reliable but better after the catch.

    It’s precisely this kind of thinking (abandoning a good long term strategy because you had one isolated, bad experience with it) that has seen many teams over think their approach to the game and shoot themselves in the foot.

  30. shieldsisland37 says: Feb 9, 2012 10:01 PM

    Hindsight is 20/20

  31. vikesorgtfo says: Feb 9, 2012 10:04 PM

    I know it bit him in the ass, but he was right. Nicks and Cruz are the better receivers.

  32. goodguyjohn says: Feb 9, 2012 10:04 PM

    Then Manningham suggested to NBC cameras to “Go to Belichik” for the money shot

  33. 6ball says: Feb 9, 2012 10:06 PM

    .

    Patriots opponents use the same strategy. They try to take away Welker and Gronkowski. It’s sound defensive football.

    .

  34. larryfinfan says: Feb 9, 2012 10:07 PM

    Well, it made perfect sense to continue the game plan as they had. Afterall, they’d held the Gmen down to that point…secondly, with very good coverage, it took a perfect pass and a spectacular catch for it to succeed. He played the right percentages and lost…that happens some times. There are still 30 other teams that would have like to have been in the position to make that same decision….And I’m not a pasties fan, at all…

  35. straighcashhomie84 says: Feb 9, 2012 10:11 PM

    TEBOW!

  36. moosev says: Feb 9, 2012 10:12 PM

    I am still so happy that NE lost. I can’t stand those bastards!

  37. amgdds says: Feb 9, 2012 10:17 PM

    Never mess with a Sicilian when death is on the line

  38. kindbass says: Feb 9, 2012 10:28 PM

    If Belichick never won any Super Bowls legitimitely, then I guess Giants fans should forget about ’86 and ’90, when he was your defensive coordinator.

  39. dmobin says: Feb 9, 2012 10:28 PM

    Don’t all good NFL coaches try to take away their opponent’s best weapons? I would hope so. The problem is you can only take away so many of those weapons. Look at the Pat’s game in Denver, Fox’s plan was to take away Gronk and Welker, and he did a good job, but they didn’t have the defense to also take away Hernandez. I would think this is true for most teams.

    Play the game again and Belichick plans the same way on defense.

  40. berniemadoffsides says: Feb 9, 2012 10:28 PM

    Good strategy.

  41. bigbluenationdb says: Feb 9, 2012 10:29 PM

    Pats just don’t have the talent to play with teams like NY. Any team that was physical with them this year they struggled against.

    Pittsburgh, NY (twice) Baltimore.

    New England is lucky that Beckham and Ballard went down with torn ACLs. Eli would have killed them with those guys being healthy.

  42. mnfan1 says: Feb 9, 2012 10:29 PM

    I think every coach would have done the same thing

  43. flakazoid says: Feb 9, 2012 10:33 PM

    mnlittle says:
    This Superbowl victory by the giants will always be tainted by a safety call that should not have been made. Chalk this up to the league office giving a helping hand to the home team.
    ——————————————————–
    Listen to the SFX, Brady admits to O.C. that he threw the ball away!

    Now take your beatin’ like a man, pal!

  44. quadya says: Feb 9, 2012 10:40 PM

    Eli had his eyes closed on that throw… Go.back and look st the tape

  45. mattlion says: Feb 9, 2012 10:42 PM

    Parcells titles without Belichick = 0

    Belichick titles without Crennel = 0

    Interesting factoid.

  46. zaggs says: Feb 9, 2012 10:42 PM

    “ampats says: Feb 9, 2012 9:19 PM

    Mannings pass and Manningham’s catch were nothing short of perfect. A few plays a few drops thats the game. Congrats to the Giants fans but play this game again 10 times on a neutral field its 5-5″

    With decent refs its 8-2 in the Giants favor.

  47. gcsuk says: Feb 9, 2012 10:44 PM

    mnlittle says:
    Feb 9, 2012 9:40 PM
    This Superbowl victory by the giants will always be tainted by a safety call that should not have been made. Chalk this up to the league office giving a helping hand to the home team.
    ———————————————————-

    While you’re at it, don’t forget all the *s next to the SBs that the Pats won while videotaping. Oh wait…according to Pats fans, THAT”S OK, but a perfectly legitimate call that everyone agrees was the correct call (except about 10% of Pats fans) is “tainted”.

    Dry your tears, little man. Your team lost, and your All-World QB made a bad decision. It’s time to face reality.

    And technically, the Giants were the “visitors”…Pats were the Home Team (that’s why they got Indy’s Locker Room).

  48. trbowman says: Feb 9, 2012 10:47 PM

    “Successful head coaches all make strategy adjustments. There’s a reason why this guy wins at a higher rate than others.”

    Yeah, Tom Brady.

  49. banmeup says: Feb 9, 2012 10:51 PM

    Pats were lucky they didn’t get blown out. Giants missed several redzone opportunities. Pats fans need to stop making excuses. You lost.

  50. thefiesty1 says: Feb 9, 2012 10:51 PM

    The Pats lost the game on their first play from scrimmage (the safety) and then when he tried to cheat with 12 men on the field. The Manningham catch was just icing on the cake.

  51. laserw says: Feb 9, 2012 10:55 PM

    The New England coach is an arrogant jerk. When the NFL caught on to the cheating going on at Foxboro, the Patriots have done nothing special. Just like NASCAR has been watching the 13-time cheater (caught and penalized that many times) James Johnson and suddenly he is a non-factor in NASCAR, the NFL has reduced the rag-a-muffin Bellycheater to a mid-level NFL coach who just can’t beat a middle-of-the-pack NFC team when it comes to crunch time.

    There is always next year. The Patriots might not be so lucky having the Buffalo QB playing with cracked ribs to cause their team to disappear. The end is near for Tomasina Brady and the New England Cheaters. Brady could have well played his last Super Bowl down with his hail mary pass. And lucky for him, his shrew twig wife won’t embarrass him anymore before a National Audience.

  52. descendency says: Feb 9, 2012 10:57 PM

    Even with the Patriots D focusing on Nicks and Cruz, they still forced the Giants to complete a perfect pass to Manningham.

    Eli made a perfect throw into one of the tightest windows possible. That throw was a 10/10 difficulty.

  53. redbeardxxv says: Feb 9, 2012 10:59 PM

    mnlittle says:
    Feb 9, 2012 9:40 PM
    This Superbowl victory by the giants will always be tainted by a safety call that should not have been made. Chalk this up to the league office giving a helping hand to the home team.
    ———————————————-
    Are you an idiot? Brady was clearly in the pocket, and threw a ball to ABSOLUTELY no one. Find me a Pats player ANYWHERE near that ball! Do you understand football at all??? Aside from that, Giants won by 4… Safety got them 2. 17-19 still means a Pats loss, genius. Oh yeah, and the SB wasn’t played in NY or Fox borough, so how is there a “Home team.”?? Wow, go back to eating your paste, and leave football commentary to the big boys.

  54. randygnyc says: Feb 9, 2012 10:59 PM

    I’d have to agree that BB is some kinda savant genius to be able to get that roster to play so closely to the level that the Giants did.

  55. elmoron says: Feb 9, 2012 11:11 PM

    It was the right call. Cameras never lie.

  56. rhondasays says: Feb 10, 2012 12:18 AM

    Goddess Nike knows how to make certain her team win and is nothing Bellacheat can do about a Supreme Being in charge of the game.

  57. patriotera says: Feb 10, 2012 12:22 AM

    The giants didn’t make the playoffs the last two seasons. They will not make it again next year, but of course the Pats will.

  58. shadowgm1 says: Feb 10, 2012 12:34 AM

    Happy Gilmore: Holy sh!t. Talk about your all time backfires.

  59. vincentbojackson says: Feb 10, 2012 12:36 AM

    Could also clearly hear Belichick say “we didn’t see that play on any of our secret video footage of their practices”

  60. gcsuk says: Feb 10, 2012 12:43 AM

    patriotera says:
    Feb 10, 2012 12:22 AM
    The giants didn’t make the playoffs the last two seasons. They will not make it again next year, but of course the Pats will.
    ———————————————————
    Yeah? How’d they do in 2008, the year after they lost to the Giants the first time? That’s right, missed the playoffs. Sure they were 11-5, but they still missed the playoffs. That was the year Brady missed 15 3/4 games, remember?

  61. roadtrip3500 says: Feb 10, 2012 12:43 AM

    Lost in all this analysis of the Manningham catch is the fact that side judge Laird Hayes (in his 17th season as an NFL official) made an immediate and emphatic reception signal on the play… and was dead right. Everyone else had the benefit of replays and super slo-mo, but Hayes nailed it live at full speed.

    The officials were bashed all season, and often rightly so – but Hayes needs props for getting it right on probably the most crucial play of the entire game.

  62. shadowgm1 says: Feb 10, 2012 12:44 AM

    patriotera says:Feb 10, 2012 12:22 AM

    The giants didn’t make the playoffs the last two seasons. They will not make it again next year, but of course the Pats will.

    ———————————————————

    I respect your blind faith as a fan, but you do realize that if Manning can’t play in Indy, he’s probably bound for New York Jets green, right? The Bills beat the Pats one of two last season and the Dolphins are hanging around as well. That division is no longer an easy mark, and neither are the prospects of their aging and overrated QB. With the emergence of defensive power in teams like Baltimore and Houston, as well as latent, one player away defenses from 2011 (Jets just need a solid run stopping MLB), I don’t see Brady getting another opportunity. The defense alone will take at least two or three seasons to get back to Patriots championship levels of the mid-2000′s.

  63. lostsok says: Feb 10, 2012 12:49 AM

    The Pats are old and they’ve lost the guy that made the best personal decisions. Watch them waste more picks on Ryan Mallet types as they spiral to oblivion.

    What’s even better is that while 70s Steeler’s fans, and 80′s 49 fans, and 90′s Cowboy fans ACCEPTED that their team would go through a down period…the arrogant and spoiled Boston fans will not. They will boo their own team.

    Watch for it. Gonna be sweet.

  64. east96st says: Feb 10, 2012 12:59 AM

    Hakeem Nicks had ten catches for 109 yards. That’s NOT “shutting down” a WR. You can say that means they “limited” him to a 10.9 yds avg, which is well below the 18 yds per catch that Nicks was averaging in the playoffs. But a ten catch day for over 100 yards is definitely not shutting him down.

  65. tommytd says: Feb 10, 2012 1:18 AM

    Hey if I’m not mistaken, I think that was a brand new hoodie BB was wearing! Wow, he probably should have dragged out the old crap for luck. LOL

  66. xxwhodatxx says: Feb 10, 2012 2:08 AM

    Pats would have won if not for those crucial drops.

  67. txnative61 says: Feb 10, 2012 2:09 AM

    I watched four very competitive games in the playoffs this year, that could have easily gone either way. The winners made big plays when it counted, losers didn’t, but the coaches can’t get on the field to execute their strategy’s, good or bad. Giants, 49ers, Patriots, Saints, Ravens, were all right there, but for a few plays. Surprised Texans were so close, and that the Packers weren’t closer. Super Bowl was the most sloppily played of the four games.

  68. quittsburghstoolers says: Feb 10, 2012 2:38 AM

    “Make them go to Manningham”

    ———————————————————-

    And just how did that brilliant coaching strategy
    wind up working out for you, Mr. “Genius”?

    “Bill Belichick, Super Genius”… just like Wile E. Coyote.

    I wonder if he orders all his stuff from Acme, too?

  69. txnative61 says: Feb 10, 2012 2:39 AM

    Also saw the lean going 49ers defense, Patriots offense, Saints offense, Ravens defense, Giants balanced. That’s more talent-wise than coaching or execution. A tad more balance can put any of them on top.

  70. hooterdawg says: Feb 10, 2012 3:44 AM

    If the Pats make it to a SB again with Brady/Belichick, the media foccus will not be upon their ancient SB success but rather their recent SB failures. In a tight game, who is gonna depend upon Brady a third time? By the time the game starts, even Gisele will be betting against Tom Terrific.

  71. cowboysallday says: Feb 10, 2012 3:56 AM

    If you are the effing corner guarding manningham and u know the other receivers r being watched…don’t give up the big play! Play back and watch the underneath routes…no one is afraid of his moves with the ball he doesn’t make anyone miss watch some damn tape god

  72. mkdave23 says: Feb 10, 2012 4:04 AM

    They were right to do all they could to keep it away from Nicks and Cruz; they are better receivers. Manningham’s catch was great, but he didn’t make a great play. He ran his ‘go’ waaay too close to the sideline, and made Manning make an exceptional throw which, obviously, he did. If that was Cruz or Nicks it probably would have gone for six.

  73. thatobnoxiousguy says: Feb 10, 2012 4:55 AM

    patriotera says:
    Feb 10, 2012 12:22 AM
    The giants didn’t make the playoffs the last two seasons. They will not make it again next year, but of course the Pats will.

    **********************************

    Not too impressive with the Bills, Fins, and the always overrated Jets as your competition.

    And there will be a LEGITIMATE Super Bowl champion next year, but of course it won’t be the Pats.

  74. ckk415 says: Feb 10, 2012 5:08 AM

    Sounds like pretty basic stuff to me. Make them go to their worst receiver.

    Now if only he had said to his own guys “make sure you catch it when you get hit in the hands”

  75. tatum064 says: Feb 10, 2012 5:36 AM

    db105 says:
    Feb 9, 2012 9:16 PM
    Successful head coaches all make strategy adjustments. There’s a reason why this guy wins at a higher rate than others.

    ==================

    There’s also a reason why he lost the last two Super Bowls, and two other one-and-dones before then.

  76. istuppingyourwhiteewe says: Feb 10, 2012 5:56 AM

    @ towniesman

    “getting to the big game with that roster….Bill is simply the best”

    ———————————————————————————–

    Firstly, I could have won 13 games against that schedule. Only beat one team with a winning record all year and let’s face it, they beat themselves.

    Secondly, who do you think puts together that roster? Belicheck is effectively the GM too, he is responsible for all football matters including personal.

    I wouldnt be lauding his ‘achievement’ of reaching the Superbowl this year. If next years roster comes anywhere close to resembling this years then they won’t win a playoff game!

  77. eigglesnosuperbowls says: Feb 10, 2012 6:18 AM

    He always has something to say after a loss that tries to make himself look like he invented the game of football ! The real you bill,,,,,Cleveland !

  78. waxedagain says: Feb 10, 2012 7:23 AM

    Something else was revealed from the NFL film A critical holding penalty against the Giants was bogus and the officials knew it before play resumed. Wilford told them he wasn’t held, but they enforced the penalty and stalled the drive.

  79. banmeup says: Feb 10, 2012 7:44 AM

    Pats fans are starting to look like a bunch of cry babies. Talking about next years playoffs and how the pats missed plays. First of all, even if the pats do make the playoffs next year and the giants don’t, it doesn’t change anything. Giants are super bowl champs. Second, have you seen the pats and giants schedules next year? Pats play another cupcake season age the giants play the best teams in the league. Just like this year. As far as the missed plays. Both teams missed plays. Giants missed several plays in the redzone and settled for field goals. Pats could have easily lost by 3 scores. Go cry.

  80. bigbluefan1 says: Feb 10, 2012 7:52 AM

    As a fan of the Giants I have to agree with BB Maningham was the weakest link.
    The Game was a great game both teams slugging out for 60 minutes.

    For all you haters get over it the G-Men are now 4X Super Bowl Champions and ELI is the MVP
    Not Drew not Erin Tony or Mike
    ELI Manning 2X Super Bowl MVP
    Will they make the playoffs next season who knows and if they don’t oh well but for the next 12 months they are your world champions. If you can not deal with it then go watch basketball or baseball or for most of you bowling

  81. joetoronto says: Feb 10, 2012 7:53 AM

    I was pulling for the Giants and I’m happy they won, but come on, dumping on Bellichick is insane.

    The coaching job he did this year was right off the hook, getting that team to the Super Bowl.

  82. pkpln says: Feb 10, 2012 8:00 AM

    look carefully at replay and notice that manningham makes the catch right in front of the dour belichick

    http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-highlights/09000d5d826ac88c/SB-XLVI-Can-t-Miss-Play-Manningham-makes-the-catch

  83. Mr. Wright 212 says: Feb 10, 2012 8:04 AM

    Pick your poison. You sold out to take Cruz away and Nicks killed you. You sell out to take them both away and Manningham makes plays (despite haters claiming he’s no better than a #3 — yeah right). I hope we keep the team intact and HEALTHY this season. We’re already beginning 2012 with two TEs on the PUP list SMH.

  84. Mr. Wright 212 says: Feb 10, 2012 8:09 AM

    Patriots fans/Giants haters kill me. Brady makes that throw, it’s “all world” or “the greatest pass ever”. Eli makes it (2-3 times a game, no less) and it’s “luck” or “9 times out of 10 Manningham drops it” or “9 of 10 it gets picked” or “IF, IF, IF, IF, IF”.

    Pathetic excuses for grown men, ye whole lot of ya!

  85. Mr. Wright 212 says: Feb 10, 2012 8:13 AM

    Giants should have won this game by 3-4 TDs, going away. The refs made sure it was close (BS call on Boothe, not the least of the blatant cheating whistles). The game shouldn’t have even been close, and Patsies fans still want to whine “lucky”.

    Had the Giants indeed won 38-17, they’d be claiming it was luck. Meanwhile, you “win” three super bowls with a made-up Tuck Rule, eke out two games by FGs and were 20 seconds from losing the last one, and somehow THAT isn’t luck — even WITH videotape of the other team’s signals on two of those games???

    CAN’T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS, PAL.

  86. TheWizard says: Feb 10, 2012 8:26 AM

    It was the correct game plan.

    Sometimes, the other team just makes a play.

    It’s really that simple.

  87. TheWizard says: Feb 10, 2012 8:29 AM

    The game shouldn’t have even been close

    Agreed.

    If the Giants don’t recover their own fumbles, it’s a different game.

  88. raiders757 says: Feb 10, 2012 8:30 AM

    Belichick is a great coach, but hardly the genius the Patsie fans claim him to be. If he were actually a genius, he wouldn’t be a head foot ball coach. I’ll also point out that no way in hell he’s the greatest to ever coach the game. Stop being delusional Patsieboys. The sun is setting on your beloved team and bandwagon full of so-called fans. Soon Boston will be back to normal. A hockey and basketball town. I remember visiting there as a kid, and the Patriots were the least popular team in town. Soon things will go back to normal, and all will be right with the world again. Everyone is tired of your little pretty boy team.

  89. pkpln says: Feb 10, 2012 8:37 AM

    one has to question whether any cornerback can sleep at night. the advantage is to the receiver even when the corner is all over him. witness:brandon marshall with the cowboy corner arm around his neck and still making the catch during the regular season.

  90. raiders757 says: Feb 10, 2012 8:49 AM

    mnlittle says:
    Feb 9, 2012 9:40 PM

    This Superbowl victory by the giants will always be tainted by a safety call that should not have been made. Chalk this up to the league office giving a helping hand to the home team.

    ———————————

    Are you kidding me? That was easily a safety. I was calling it before the laundry hit the field.

    Also, the league wanted the Patsies to win, not the Giants. The Pretty Boys are playing in London next season. Anyone who thinks Goodell didn’t want a championship team playing there, is an idiot. if there was a team the league would manipulate to win, it’s once again, the Patsies. Just like the 9/11 season. It was way too convenient a team named the Patriots won the Super Bowl after one of the worst attacks on our country ever. Patriot fans have no room to cry foul .The calls always went your. I think the league finally realized just how hated the Patsies and their fans are, and pulled the plug on their get a champion to play in London scheme they worked on the week leading up to the big game.

  91. wakexxl says: Feb 10, 2012 9:02 AM

    I think this article was written to give the Patriot hatters another chance to run their mouths……..yippie!!!

  92. xxsweepthelegxx says: Feb 10, 2012 9:09 AM

    bigbluenationdb says:
    Feb 9, 2012 10:29 PM
    Pats just don’t have the talent to play with teams like NY. Any team that was physical with them this year they struggled against.

    Pittsburgh, NY (twice) Baltimore.

    New England is lucky that Beckham and Ballard went down with torn ACLs. Eli would have killed them with those guys being healthy.

    ————————
    Same could be said for Gronk man….two sides to wach story.

  93. xxsweepthelegxx says: Feb 10, 2012 9:12 AM

    lostsok says:
    Feb 10, 2012 12:49 AM
    The Pats are old and they’ve lost the guy that made the best personal decisions. Watch them waste more picks on Ryan Mallet types as they spiral to oblivion.

    What’s even better is that while 70s Steeler’s fans, and 80′s 49 fans, and 90′s Cowboy fans ACCEPTED that their team would go through a down period…the arrogant and spoiled Boston fans will not. They will boo their own team.

    Watch for it. Gonna be sweet.
    ————————
    What Pat’s team are you talking about…2005?2006? Old???? Dude…the Pats are about as young as it gets overall…now maybe young can be tied to “not very good” in many cases…but old is something this team is not

  94. tedmurph says: Feb 10, 2012 9:14 AM

    raiders757 says:
    Belichick is a great coach, but hardly the genius the Patsie fans claim him to be. If he were actually a genius, he wouldn’t be a head foot ball coach. I’ll also point out that no way in hell he’s the greatest to ever coach the game. Stop being delusional Patsieboys. The sun is setting on your beloved team and bandwagon full of so-called fans.
    ———————————————————-
    You act as if being a HC is akin to being a ditchdigger. BB is the highest paid coach in FB, pulling down about 6 mil a yr and at the head of his profession. Wonder how many geniuses in the private sector are doing that. There is still no doubt in any reasonable FB person’s mind that BB will go down as one of the greatest coaches of all time. Whether you want to hate him or not.

    Oh, no, the sun is setting on the Pats for the 5th year in a row. You wish. They have a young team, a lot of draft picks(thanks raiders) and plenty of cap room. As long as Brady plays at a high level(3-4 more yrs) there gonna be there, whether you like it or not. The only sure thing about next year is the raiders will be going nowhere, again.

  95. Patskrieg dot com says: Feb 10, 2012 9:15 AM

    I mean… was it a terrible strategy?

    If you haters recall, on Manningham’s previous target he found a wide open seam in the Patriots zone and faded himself out of bounds before he could catch the ball. He has a history of drops and really wasn’t having a great game. It took a one in a million throw & catch to make that play happen.

    If they had that play back I’d probably support the same gameplan again.

  96. stuartscottslefteye says: Feb 10, 2012 9:21 AM

    Let’s face it – the Pats backed into the Superbowl due to Baltimore defying the odds with that disastrous self-destructive ending and playing a scrimmage team (Denver) in the first round of the playoffs. And the Giants, a team that lost to the Redskins twice, simply got hot at the right time. To be honest, I would have hated to see a team with a 31st ranked defense win the big one. Hats off to Belichick and the Pats for keeping the game close – but let’s be honest – there were a couple of better teams than both SB competitors watching this one from their couches.

  97. tedmurph says: Feb 10, 2012 9:25 AM

    @wright:
    Giants should have won by 3-4 td’s? What game were you watching? Pats led the whole 2nd half. I don’t see a lot of Pats fans crying luck. Giants made the plays at the end and the Pats didn’t. Deeserved to win. Why don’t you try to enjoy it, instead of being miserable and hysterically trying to validate it.

    Tuck rule was not mae up. It was called several times during the year, including correctly called in the Snow Bowl. If you don’t like the rule, I guess tht’s too bad. Pats ‘eked out’ 2SB’s w/last second FGs, so what? Giants won their last 2 coming from behind in the last 2 mins of the 4th qtr. Can’t have it both ways , pal.

  98. ampats says: Feb 10, 2012 9:38 AM

    tedmurph,

    You have to feel sorry for Raiders fans since they pull for the worst/losing team for the past decade. Rooting for a team that has not finished over 500 in a decade must be extremely frustrating which is why they continue to bang the Tuck Rule drum.Makes you wonder if the rule is wrong why is it still on the books 10 years later?
    By the way, BB pulls down between 7.5-8 mill a year as HC.

    Mr Wright,

    3-4 TD’s ? See you started your weekend binging a little early.

  99. CKL says: Feb 10, 2012 9:51 AM

    CKL says:
    Feb 10, 2012 8:49 AM
    So we find out Mr. Wright is a poor and irrational winner too. Nice. At least you are consistent.

    @ paulie
    Nice post from an opposing fan. Thank you.

    BB was pretty upbeat (for him) about this team even right after the loss, and I concur. That rag tag bunch of guys on D played pretty darned well in the playoffs. They got beaten by terrific execution and strategy (I’m sure TC knew BB would take those guys away and planned accordingly) by the NYG. No shame in that.

    Most of us Pats fans aren’t devastated by this one the way we were in 07 because this team really had no business even being in the SB this year. In 07 it was expected. It was a fun season especially watching these guys get better and overachieve on D. They showed a lot of heart and mental toughness this year.

  100. tedmurph says: Feb 10, 2012 9:57 AM

    @ampats:
    Thanks for the correction, bro.

  101. blu4l1fe says: Feb 10, 2012 10:41 AM

    It’s quite amazing that every article relating to the Super Bowl always ends up in a “whine fest” of fans who keep claiming “IFs.”

    Yes, the Giants won, we love it, and we are enjoying it. But there is still a lot of claims that there were better teams that should have been playing but ended up watching the game. Face it, if you were a better team, you would be playing and not watching. Stop with the “fact is” reference regarding the past season on how the Giants were only a .500 team and lost to this team and that. FACT IS they are the Super Bowl champs. And if we really want to get technical, and this is to all the haters who keep claiming the Giants got lucky, yes the ball bounced and we got some lucky bounces our way. There has never been, and never will be a Super Bowl with an asterisk saying that “the Giants won because they got lucky on two fumbles by a 49er and a less than stellar performance by a good Green Bay team” as much as there will never be an asterisk to all of those wins the Patriots got back in 2007 when they were caught videotaping their opponents play signals.

    SO LIVE WITH IT!!!

  102. belichickyoself says: Feb 10, 2012 10:46 AM

    @istuppingyourwhiteewe

    “Firstly, I could have won 13 games against that schedule. Only beat one team with a winning record all year and let’s face it, they beat themselves.”

    —————————————–

    I am so tired of hearing this from people. Let’s face it this was a black/white season in that there were a handful of good teams in the entire league and it consisted of ONLY the teams that made the playoffs. Assuming that .500 does not mean a winning season. Only one team finished the season with a winning record and didn’t make the playoffs and that was the 9-7 Tennesse Titans.

    At the start of this season, New England was tied for 15th as most difficult schedule, New York tied for 19th. The playoff team that had the most difficult schedule this season was Denver tied for 3rd.

    http://espn.go.com/blog/nflnation/post/_/id/35095/2011-strength-of-schedule

    Whether or not anyone has or will address this, the fact is the lock out affected a lot of player’s performances this season. To me it was obvious, 95% of them were not at their peak physical condition, hence all the major injuries that flooded this season (how many QB’s did teams go through?) and 13 teams (some barely) having a winning record, as already mentioned there have been seasons when 11-5 teams could not get a wildcard.

    New England still beat 5 teams that were 8-8: San Diego; Oakland, The Jets twice, Philadelphia & Denver.

    But if we really want to go into who had a cupcake schedule let’s see who the Giants beat in the regular season to enter the playoffs at an astounding 9-7: Philadelphia, St. Louis, Arizona, Buffalo, Miami, The Jets, & Dallas 2 times. Oh and of course, New England. 4 of those teams were 8-8 and then New England and then 4 teams below .500.

    I’ll give the Giants credit for stepping up & beating some really excellent teams in the playoffs but if we’re really going to use the argument of New England only beat one team with a winning season, then it needs to be applied to the Giants as well.

  103. bigdan7885 says: Feb 10, 2012 10:51 AM

    I wonder if he said “Make them go to Tyree!” back in XLII

  104. 2sausage11 says: Feb 10, 2012 11:17 AM

    OK lets say we put a guy like edelman on Nicks or Cruz and put the other CB and safeties on Manningham and see how that would have worked out. The game plan he had was working and holding to FG most of the game. If the Pats secondary was better they could have done a man coverage, but that was the weak link in their D. You people make it sound like trying to take out the 1 and 2 WR and make them beat you with their 3rd is a bad thing.

  105. patsfiend says: Feb 10, 2012 12:03 PM

    This just in… the Giants BARELY won the game, and if you play that game 20 times it’s probably 10-10. Great job, but get over yourselves, Giants fans. You all know you were shi!tting your pants at the end of that game, just like we were.

    And, for all the haters… the Pats have done just fine since the media-created “SpyGate” you refer to, and they’ll be back next year. Keep hating… Pats (and our holy evil leader, Bill) just keep winning.

  106. wenellniners says: Feb 10, 2012 1:01 PM

    db105 says:
    Feb 9, 2012 9:16 PM
    Successful head coaches all make strategy adjustments. There’s a reason why this guy wins at a higher rate than others.
    ____________

    there’s also a reason why he hasn’t won a super bowl since he stopped taping the other team’s play calls.

    look at brady’s numbers when they were cheating and since they’ve stopped. downvote it all you want but the numbers don’t lie.

  107. 2sausage11 says: Feb 10, 2012 1:38 PM

    east96st says:
    Feb 10, 2012 12:59 AM
    Hakeem Nicks had ten catches for 109 yards. That’s NOT “shutting down” a WR. You can say that means they “limited” him to a 10.9 yds avg, which is well below the 18 yds per catch that Nicks was averaging in the playoffs. But a ten catch day for over 100 yards is definitely not shutting him down.
    ================================
    Thats the way they played all year between the 20s. the bend don’t break. Their red zone was alot better and held most to FG. They held Cruz to 4 for 25yrds but did give up a TD. So they kept him in check aside from the TD and no TD’s for Nicks. Gronk got 2 for 26yrds with a bum stick. You get 1 TD passing and 2 FGs the rush TD they gave you to save time on the clock. The #’s for both teams are real close. Eli 30/40 296 1TD Brady 27/41 276 2TD 1 int. rushing 115 G and 83 P

  108. Mr. Wright 212 says: Feb 10, 2012 2:06 PM

    patsfiend says:
    Feb 10, 2012 12:03 PM
    This just in… the Giants BARELY won the game, and if you play that game 20 times it’s probably 10-10. Great job, but get over yourselves, Giants fans. You all know you were shi!tting your pants at the end of that game, just like we were.

    And, for all the haters… the Pats have done just fine since the media-created “SpyGate” you refer to, and they’ll be back next year. Keep hating… Pats (and our holy evil leader, Bill) just keep winning.

    6 1 i
    Rate This

    ———

    Blah blah blah, IF IF IF, you LOST. And the refs kept you in it with that BS call on Boothe. Just knock it off. You were one of those clowns who thought the Cheats would win easily. The Giants should have won by at least 2-3 TD.

  109. Mr. Wright 212 says: Feb 10, 2012 2:09 PM

    banmeup says:
    Feb 10, 2012 7:44 AM
    Pats fans are starting to look like a bunch of cry babies. Talking about next years playoffs and how the pats missed plays. First of all, even if the pats do make the playoffs next year and the giants don’t, it doesn’t change anything. Giants are super bowl champs. Second, have you seen the pats and giants schedules next year? Pats play another cupcake season age the giants play the best teams in the league. Just like this year. As far as the missed plays. Both teams missed plays. Giants missed several plays in the redzone and settled for field goals. Pats could have easily lost by 3 scores. Go cry.

    ———

    Can’t get them to admit that last line, B.

  110. 2sausage11 says: Feb 10, 2012 2:36 PM

    Mr. Wright 212 says: Feb 10, 2012 2:09 PM

    banmeup says:
    Feb 10, 2012 7:44 AM
    Pats fans are starting to look like a bunch of cry babies. Talking about next years playoffs and how the pats missed plays. First of all, even if the pats do make the playoffs next year and the giants don’t, it doesn’t change anything. Giants are super bowl champs. Second, have you seen the pats and giants schedules next year? Pats play another cupcake season age the giants play the best teams in the league. Just like this year. As far as the missed plays. Both teams missed plays. Giants missed several plays in the redzone and settled for field goals. Pats could have easily lost by 3 scores. Go cry.

    ———

    Can’t get them to admit that last line, B.
    ======
    The way I look at it we spotted you 9 pts and 1 qt. and had you on the ropes till the last 57 sec.

  111. n0hopeleft says: Feb 10, 2012 2:52 PM

    TheWizard says:
    Feb 10, 2012 8:29 AM
    The game shouldn’t have even been close

    Agreed.

    If the Giants don’t recover their own fumbles, it’s a different game.

    ___________________________________

    Well then why didn’t the Patriots recover them?
    The ball was right there for them to grab?!

    YOU’RE A MORON!

  112. n0hopeleft says: Feb 10, 2012 2:55 PM

    nflfan555 says:
    Feb 9, 2012 9:46 PM
    Manningham was lucky – makes that catch 1 in a 100, it was the right move… Giants were outplayed

    ___________________________________

    Stick to Dungeons and Dragons in mom’s basement. Im not sure what game you were watching, but Eli and Tom outplayed Tom and Bill.

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