Tag Archives: Eli Manning

NFL 2009: Giants tremble over the Falcons

The Atlanta Falcons scampered northwards to play the New York Giants.  Televised by Fox, and narrated by Daryl Johnston and Kenny Albert, the two teams talked business in sunny, fifty-three degree weather.  Back at home?  Definitely not sunny.  A bit rainy.  Once again, another visually splotchy telecast.  The Giants went on offense first.  Quarterback Eli Manning threw quite well…until the Falcons defense brought on the pressure and he threw a poor one (recovered by a fellow Giant).  Two plays later (methinks), he was intercepted by Falcons cornerback Brent Grimes.  What would the Falcons do with the turnover?  Would they show might? Pas beaucoup.  Nearing the bottom of the first quarter, the Giants punched out three points with a thirty-nine yard field goal.  New York 3 and Atlanta 0.

The second quarter bounced off to an offensive start for the Falcons–AND A RUSHING TOUCHDOWN BY RUNNING BACK JASON SNELLING!!!!  Atlanta 7 and New York 3.  The Giants returned the favor with a field goal that was no good.  No matter, Giants tight end Kevin Boss would run the ball in for a TD soon enough.  The Falcons had an opportunity to score again before halftime; a TD didn’t happen and neither did a FG.  With under two minutes left in the first half, Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan went down to the turf, the ball came out of his hands, and the Giants recovered.  Kevin Boss pulled up his team’s numbers just before halftime with a TD catch.  New York 17 and Atlanta 7.

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The third quarter gave the Falcons something to smile about as Jason Snelling made his second TD of the day.  The Giants scored right back with a TD of their own, thanks to running back Brandon Jacobs.   The Falcons struggled to  get a TD on their next possession but took a field goal instead.  The scoring see-saw saw the Giants increase their lead with a TD catch by fullback Madison Hedgecock in the top of the fourth quarter.  New York 31 and Atlanta 17.  The Falcons proved in the second half of the fourth quarter that they’re still in the game with an Eric Weems TD.   New York 31 and Atlanta 24.  Two minutes left in the game…who would pass Go and Collect 200?  Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez got his team closer collecting 200 by making a TD in the end of the end zone.  Both teams tied with 31 points.  On to overtime with the Giants receiving the ball and a thirty-six yard field goal attempt.  Kicker Lawrence Tynes won the game for his team.  New York 34 and Atlanta 31.  Final score.

So close and yet so far for the Falcons, but at least Matt Ryan didn’t throw any interceptions.  Without Michael Turner, they still tied the Giants.

Say hello to my Falcons Gnome.


Observations & Miscellania:

1.  Daryl Johnston remarked towards the middle of the second quarter that “the Falcons don’t play to the whistle; they play just past the whistle.”

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NFL 2009: Giants scrunch and munch the Cowboys

The New York Giants got a first person look at the towering girth of the TV screen at Cowboys Stadium tonight.  Approximately 111,000 warm bodies filled the place to watch the game?

Televised on NBC, the first score of the game came in the form of a Giants field goal in the first quarter.  When the Cowboys went on offense, running back Marion Barber ran into the end zone for a touchdown.  Dallas 7 and New York 3.  The bottom of the quarter greeted Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo throwing an interception; Giants cornerback Bruce Johnson grabbed the ball in the air and flew into the end zone.  New York 10 and Dallas 7.  Cowboys running back Felix Jones went to return a kick-off but then dropped the ball at the twenty-eight yard line.  The Giants jumped on the loose prolate spheroid.  They would get another field goal soon after, giving them 13 points to the Cowboys’ 10.

The Cowboys responded with a TD catch by tight end Jason Witten in the second quarter.  Dallas 14 and New York 13.  With fewer than sixty seconds left to play in the first half, Giants QB Eli Manning threw a TD pass to wide receiver Mario Manningham, who juggled the ball in the air as he was sliding across the end zone, but he did maintain possession of the ball.  New York 20 and Dallas 14.  This TD would not have been possible had Tony Romo’s previous pass not hit Jason Witten’s left foot, causing the ball to richochet up into the hands of Giants safety Kenny Philips.  The Cowboys were able to get a field goal and narrow the score gap.  Going into halftime, New York 20 and Dallas 17.

The third quarter started with a missed twenty-nine field goal for the Giants.  It tick-tocked down to around three minutes when Tony Romo got into the end zone.  Dallas 24 and New York 20.  With fewer than thirty seconds left on the clock, Tony Romo  threw another interception right into the bosom of Kenny Philips.

The fourth quarter started with a medium shot of LeBron James, in a black t-shirt and sunglasses, in one of the VIP boxes.  Eli Manning connected with Giants wide receiver Steve Smith for a TD to take the lead again.  A field goal halfway through the quarter maintained that lead.  New York 30 and Dallas 24.  The Cowboys weren’t going to let the Giants keep that top bunk.  Felix Jones got himself into the end zone.  Dallas 31 and New York 30.  Thirteen seconds left!  What would happen?!  Giants Lawrence Tynes attempted a thirty-seven yard field goal, made it, but Dallas called a time-out at the very, very last milli-second.  Take two was good too, though.  New York 33 and Dallas 31.  Wow.

Observations & Miscellania:

1.  Bob Costas spoke with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones before the game started.  Jones emphasized that he wanted the fans to get “an experience they don’t/wouldn’t get watching the game at home/on the TV.”

2.  John Madden was in attendance at the game.  When the camera cut to him (in a medium shot), he was checking his phone.

3.  Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth provided commentary.  “Gimme a noun, gimme a preposition…be it ever so humble, Jerry Jones has given a new meaning to the word ‘home’,” Michaels said of the stadium.

4.  Jordin Sparks sang the National Anthem.  Was Rudy Giuliani included in the montage of faces?

5.  The former President and First Lady were there at the coin toss.

6.  Cowboys Stadium’s field looked like regurgitated spinach.

7.  A camera caught George W. Bush sitting next to John Madden during the middle of the first quarter.

8.  Al Michaels noted halfway through the second quarter that Eli Manning and his offensive line, David Diehl, Rich Seubert, Shaun O’Hara, Chris Snee, and Kareem McKenzie, have started thirty-four games straight.

9.  A camera caught a glimpse of Jerry Jones’s daughter, Charlotte, and wife, Jean, flanking Laura Bush.  They appeared to be having an interesting conversation.  The former First Lady nodded and smiled and Mrs. Jones used hand gestures to explain something.

10.  Marion Barber’s mouth guard is blue.

11.  The scoreboard at Cowboys Stadium is seven stories high.

12.  Halftime included more interview footage with John Madden and Bob Costas.  My goodness, Costas does age!  Madden said that he only decided to retire two months after the Steelers beat the Cardinals in last year’s Super Bowl.

13.  Wow…there are now Dallas Cowboys Cage Dancers?  The Cheerleaders are a separate piece.

Get game summary, stats, and play-by-play here.  Click here for the Cowboys roster.

NFL 2009: Giants leave the Redskins behind

The Washington Redskins and the New York Giants gathering by the knees.   Fox televised the game; Joe Buck and Troy Aikman were the commentators.  The first score of the game was a field goal for the Giants.  New York 3 and Washington 0.  The second quarter started with a tussle between Redskins wide receiver Santana Moss and cornerback Giants Corey Webster.  Giants wide receiver Mario Manningham ran Eli Manning’s pass into the end zone for a touchdown a few minutes into the quarter.  New York 10 and Washington 0.  In the bottom of the quarter, defensive end Osi Umenyiora got his hands around a fumbled Redskins ball and ran it in for a TD.  New York 17 and Washington 0.  With fewer than thirty seconds left in the first half, Redskins pretended to try a field goal and punter Hunter Smith was able to make a TD.  New York 17 and Washington 7.

The third quarter wormed down to under three minutes when Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall intercepted Eli Manning.  Would Redskins QB Jason Campbell be able to take advantage?  Not entirely.  They’d have to make do with a field goal.  New York 17 and Washington 10.   The Giants picked up a field goal in the top and bottom of the fourth quarter.  The Redskins didn’t stop trying, though.  Tight end Chris Cooley made a TD reception in the final 1.5 minutes of the game.  New York 23 and Washington 17.  Final score.

Observations & Miscellania:

1.  Liquid nitrogen and a pool.  Pretty.

2.  The skycam swirled up and around the Giants huddle at the four minute mark in the second quarter.  Those Giants looked like action figures with that vertical spatial compression.

3.  When the commercial break ended after Oi Umenyiora made that TD, one of the cameras cut to him sitting on the bench.  He looked upwards and made some hand gestures towards the sky.  Was he thanking unseen forces?

4.  I’ve noticed for quite a long time now that persons in army fatigues have stood behind the end zones in many games.  I decided to google the phrase, “armed forces love NFL” to see what kinds of results are returned. Here’s something on Hines Ward.  Watching the NFL in Okinawa, Japan.  Searching “army NFL end zone” yields footballers in Kuwait.

5.  After Hunter Smith made the TD in the bottom of the second quarter (which was captured with the skycam as it happend), there was some slow-motion footage of Redksins head coach Jim Zorn chewing gum.  I’m going to take this moment to implore all networks never to include slow-motion of anyone chewing gum.

6.  Four minutes into the third quarter, the camera cut to a medium close-up of the Giants sidelines.  I’m not sure who was in the middle of the frame, but one of the non-suited Giants was screen-right in the background.  He had a water bottle that was half-filled with faintly pink liquid and was holding a silver packet close to his mouth as his head was tilted.  Kool Aid drink mixCrystal Light packet?

7.  Troy Aikman’s hands are quite large.  I am amused by the way Joe Buck looks at his colleague during cuts to the press box.  He appears to be listening intently, but on the other hand, he could also not be paying attention.  Is it what he does with his mouth?  And all those instances of swallowing? You can see hints of it here too.

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Pro-Bowl 2009: the NFC crinkle fries the AFC

Last year the NFC outnumbered the AFC.  Toss a poker chip, a chocolate coin. 50-50.  Who would win this year (or season)? Broadcast on NBC, unfolding in Hawaii for the thirtieth straight year, the first quarter started with Cardinals’ Kurt Warner as quarterback for the NFC.  The Colts’ Peyton Manning QB’ed for the AFC.  Halfway through the quarter, Manning threw a touchdown catch to Tony Gonzalez (tight end for the Chiefs).  AFC 7 and NFC 0.  The Saints’ Drew Brees took to QB’ing next for the NFC.  Colts defensive end Robert Mathis got his grip around the ball three minutes later.  Manning was back out on the field as QB for the AFC…and was sacked by Panthers’ defensive end Julius Peppers three plays later.  Brees was on as QB for the NFC with under two minutes left in the quarter.

The second quarter began with the Giants kicker John Carney put a thirty-seven yard field goal through the yellow prongs.  AFC 7 and NFC 3.  Manning and Brees continued as QBs through the rest of the quarter (well, mostly; Kerry Collins of the Titans went in as QB for the AFC with fifty-two seconds left).  Texans tight end Owen Daniels made a TD catch with less than a minute left on the clock.  Before the quarter was out, though, Cardinals’ wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald got the NFC another TD.  AFC 14 and NFC 10.

The third quarter started with the AFC on offense and Kerry Collins as QB.  Eli Manning went in for quarterbacking duties for the NFC.  Towards the bottom of the quarter, Vikings cornerback Antoine Winfield intercepted Collins.  When the NFC got on the field in offense, the first play was Eli Manning throwing the ball twenty-six yards to Falcons wide receiver Roddy White.  Two plays later, though, Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis made a one-handed interception in the end zone.  He caught the ball with his right hand.  Oh, but what next? No sooner did the AFC go back in offense, Vikings defensive end Jared Allen recovered Collins’s fumbled ball.  When the NFC boys took to the field again, Vikings running back Adrian Peterson got the ball into the end zone.  NFC 17 and AFC 14.

The fourth quarter waddled seven minutes down and Colts fullback Le’Ron McClain scrambled into the end zone to give the AFC the lead again.  Jay Cutler of the Broncos was the QB.  AFC 21 and NFC 17.  With four minutes, thereabouts, left to play, Larry Fitzgerald made a leaping TD catch.  NFC 24 and AFC 21.  Going to two-and-a-half minutes, Julius Peppers intercepted Cutler in a move that compelled the commentators to reference his basketball skills.  John Carney spat out a forty-eight yard field goal to give the NFC three more points.  Carney went back on the field with thirty-five seconds left to seal the meal with a twenty-six yard field goal.  Final score NFC 30 and AFC 21.

Observations & Miscellania:

1. Al Michaels (wearing a grayish-green, short-sleeved, button-down shirt) and Cris Collinsworth (in light blue) provided commentary.

2.  David Archuleta sang the national anthem.  Not too shabby.  Je suppose.

3.  The NFC uniforms consisted of blue pants and blue tops–save for the sleeves and the back.  The AFC uniforms consisted of red socks, white pants, and red sleeves.  The players wore their respective team helmets.

4.  Before you Race to Witch Mountain, you should Escape to Witch Mountain and then Return from Witch Mountain.

5.  Enrique Iglesias and Ciara provided halftime entertainment.  What in the ward was Enrique wearing? Dark denims and yellow short-sleeved shirt (with two white stripes on the sleeves) with the words “make it happen” on it.  Oh, and a cap.  The field was littered with dancers in multi-colored costumes.  Bright colors: greens, magentas, corals, reds.

6.  Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth joked during the bottom of the third quarter that the players will do anything for money; they’ll play so much harder for a cash prize.

7.  Ronde Barber’s voice is lower than his brother Tiki’s.  His face is also longer than Tiki’s.

8.  Today was the tenth time that Tony Gonzalez and Peyton Manning have been to the Pro-Bowl.

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NFC Divisional 2009: Eagles chocolate sauce the Giants with glee

The Philadelphia Eagles parked their flock of feathers on the trellis of the New York Giants’ garden.  They both want to go to the NFC Championship.  Broadcast on Fox, the first quarter began with the Giants and a field goal.  New York 3 and Philadelphia 0.  Halfway through the first quarter,  Eagles cornerback Asante Samuel intercepted Giants quarterback Eli Manning’s pass and ran the ball into the red zone.  Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb broke the goal line eventually for a touchdown.  Philadelphia 7 and New York 3.

The second quarter started with the Giants getting a safety.  Philadelphia 7 and New York 5.  Five or so minutes later, Giants kicker John Carney missed a forty-six yard field goal.  Towards the bottom of the quarter, Donovan McNabb’s throw (3rd and 9 on the NY 41) landed in the bosom of Giants cornerback Kevin Dockery.   John Carney made the field goal in the bottom of the quarter.  New York 8 and Philadelphia 7.  Going into halftime, Eagles kicker David Akers and a twenty-five yard field goal was good.  Philadelphia 10 and New York 8.

The third quarter started off with a forty-six yard kickoff-return by Eagles safety Quintin Demps.  And then, d’oh! Turnover. Giants defensive tackle Fred Robbins spirited the ball away on the next play;  Eagles wide receiver Kevin Curtis had to bring him down.  A field goal later, the Giants took the lead by one point.  11 to 10.  The Eagles flung up a field goal of their own for the lead again.  13 to 11.  John Carney missed a forty-seven yard field goal with about four minutes of play left.

The Eagles extended their lead with a tight end Brent Celek TD catch in the top of the quarter.  Philadelphia 20 and New York 11.  Another Eagles field goal towards the bottom of the quarter put the score to Philadelphia 23 and New York 11.  Eli Manning threw a second interception shortly thereafter.  Eagles safety Quintin Mikell got his hands on the ball.  Another turnover with under a minute to play.  Philadelphia 23 and New York 11. Final score.  Numerically a first?  The Eagles are going to the NFC Championship.   Wahoo!

Observations & Miscellania:

1.  Joe Buck and Troy Aikman were the commentators.

2.  The temperature at the Meadowlands today was thirty degrees.  The Giants sat on the sunny side of the field.  The Eagles sat in the shadow.

3.  By the middle of the second quarter, Giants defensive end Osi Umenyiora was on the sidelines supporting his teammates.  He was wearing a dark  gray/light black suit, v-neck sweater (vest), and chewing ice blue gum.  He had to sit most of the season out due to a knee injury in late August.

4.  Bottom of the third quarter.  Donovan McNabb attempted to connect with Kevin Curtis.  The sideline judge threw down the yellow flag for pass interference on Giants cornerback Corey Webster.  The foul was retracted after the officials had a discussion.  On the next play, McNabb linked up with tight end LJ Smith.  Giantslinebacker Antonio Pierce was cited for a face mask penalty.  Specifically, I believe the the referee said “major face mask.”

5.  Before cutting to commercial in the bottom of the fourth quarter (after the two-minute warning), the camera cut to an extreme close-up of a male Giants fan, probably in his thirties…asleep.  He wore a blue ski-cap, had half his face painted, and he was asleep.  His friends aren’t going to let him live it down.

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