As the much anticipated NFC east battle at Giants stadium is five days away, both teams and coaches are anxious to hit the field. This game is going to come down to who is on their A game. Lately the Eagles have been on a roll, and they come into the meadowlands with momentum, an experienced quarterback in Donovan Mcnabb, and a confidence that is instilled in the entire team based on the fact that they won at Giants stadium a little over a month ago. The Giants meanwhile are coming off a much needed bye week. They had gone through thirteen grueling straight games against ten teams in a row with at least a .500 record. I will give the Giants a little leway regarding their lack of run defense that has been present over the past month. The same is said for not being able to sack the quarterback. The Giants were exhausted and this bye week healed the wounds. The Giants come into this game completely healthy, while the Eagles defense is banged up. Eli Manning is a reliable postseason quarterback, and there is no other guy I would want leading my team in the two minute drill than Eli. The way the Giants will beat the Eagles is simple. On defense, mirror Brian Westbrook with Kenny Phillips. Phillips has a ton of energy, and will be able to stay on top of Westbrook. I believe that Justin Tuck will have two sacks this week. He has been banged up and sick, and he hasn't played in nearly three weeks. If the Giants can get four man pressure on Mcnabb at a windy Giants stadium in mid January, it is a recipe of disaster for the Eagles. Mcnabb might be the leader, but Westbrook is the offense. He has that big play ability and is always a threat on the field with his intelligence, and great vision. The Eagles have a massive offensive line and he is able to hide behind them until he finds the right holes to dart in front of. On the other side of the ball, the Giants have to do what they do best. Hand the ball to Mr. Brandon Jacobs and let him go to work. As always he will tire the Eagles defense out by the end of the first quarter. I expect the Giants to be up 10-3 at the end of the first quarter. They will have two long drives with Jacobs gaining over sixty yards in the first quarter. Then in the second quarter Derrick Ward will come into the game with fresh legs, against an Eagles defense that will be putting their hands on their hips, signaling fatigue. The Eagles will have to stuff the box, and Eli will begin to use play action and find Kevin Boss for a touchdown and six catches for eighty yards by the time his day is over. Add that to a touchdown by jacobs, and a touchdown by Ward. Let's not forget about Steve Smith's ability to make a play on third downs. He will get his chance and excel as he always does in the spotlight. Add a touchdown to his playoff resume as the Giants will put up 28 on the Eagles. The Eagles will put up 17 on the Giants, but the last 7 will be meaningless garbage points with under a minute left in the game. 28-17 Giants, as they will face the Carolina Panthers in the NFC Championships Game.
By Michael Rolland
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