Team Giants


Giants - Saints
Game 2 preview

Mon Sept 19, 7:30 pm (ABC) - Giants at New Orleans at the Meadowlands

New Orleans.
The "Who Dat" team (Who dat says dey gone beat dem Saints?) has now become the "We it" team. For many, the New Orleans Saints in name, represent about all that is left and in some ways they inspire some hope and the spirit of New Orleans. The New Orleans Saints carry the banner in their name for the city that was ravaged by hurricane Katrina. On Monday, the vagabond Saints come to New Jersey to play what is considered to be their "home opening" game of the season.

Tickets to the game.
The Giants have sold out every game since moving to East Rutherford 29 years ago. The stadium seats 78,387 and the team says it has 80,000 people on a waiting list for season tickets. Maybe if the Giants season ticket holders realized that the Saints would be bringing their cheerleaders along, the tickets would have moved a bit faster.
Giant season ticket holders, some with two or more allocations, already pay for 8 games and the 2 meaningless preseason games .The opportunity to pick up yet another pair of tickets was passed up by many, leaving about 25,000 tickets up for sale to the general public. There were still about 17,000 left on Saturday morning. This is a great opportunity for those who long for a chance to see the Giants play right here in New Jersey in what should be an historic and very special game.

Watching at home.
Pay attention. This gets tricky. The game and fund-raising telethon for Hurricane Katrina relief will be televised in the New York area by ABC beginning at 7:30 p.m. EDT. ESPN will carry the start of the Dallas Cowboys-Washington Redskins game at 9 p.m. in New York, Louisiana, and other selected markets.
At the conclusion of the Saints-Giants game, ABC affiliates in New York, New Orleans, and other selected areas will pick up the Dallas-Washington game. ESPN's Monday night pre-game programming will begin from Giants Stadium at 6 p.m.
Note; The blackout was officially lifted when the NFL announced that "due to the extraordinary circumstances" of Monday night's relocated Giants-Saints game, there will be no local TV blackout.

The Saints.
The Saints come marching into Giants Stadium having won a tough 23-20 road game over the Carolina Panthers. After playing this 'home game' against the Giants, the Saints will play 3 home games this season in San Antonio, where they moved after the hurricane, and 4 in Baton Rouge, La. The Saints will be the crowd favorite, at least through the opening ceremonies. Their popularity will wane fast if they play up to their level, which would be a bit more intense than the Cardinal's team who Giants(42-9) easily handled last week.
Against the Panthers last week, the Saints intercepted Jake Delhomme twice and forced him to fumble the ball away on another occasion. On offense they held the highly rated Panthers defense to just one sack, though Deuce McAllister had trouble, gaining just 64 yards on 26 carries. The Saints defense will be coming at Eli Manning this week, and with their offense, the Deuce will be harder to handle than what the Giants faced last week.

The Giants.
Eli Manning (10 of 23 for 172 yards, 2 TDs, INTs) made Plaxico Burress his main target last week for 5 catches out of his 10 completions, as only four receivers caught passes. The others were two to Tiki, two more to Shockey, and one to Tim Carter. Plaxico was happy, but don't tell him that on his old team, Ben Roethlisberger had a perfect passer rating of 158.3. He was 9 of 11 for 218 yards and 2 TDs while hitting 6 different receivers. The Pittsburgh Steelers actually had more passing yards than rushing, and stats show them beating the Giants in both categories last week.
Eli Manning doesn't have to be perfect, but he, as well as the Giants offense, has to improve. It won't be easy this week against the Saints, who will be very tough on defense against the run and the pass. The Giants defense did it all last week, but will really be put to the test. All six Giants on the injury report practiced on Friday, though none of the players who were out last week - CB Will Peterson, LB Barrett Green and WR Jamaar Taylor, were activated as of yet.

Tom Coughlin rant - Get real.
Tom should stop thinking of himself as a General mired in some kind of NFL war. Football, lest anyone forgets, is in fact a sports game and played for entertainment. Tom, don't pattern yourself after great war generals. Players (like Will Peterson for example) don't have to be forced into the field of battle, lest all is lost. You are not in a real war. You once pointed to the injury factor under Jim Fassel to be a cancer, a mental thing, as much as it is anything else. Under your rule last year, injuries were even worse. Don't waste our players. Don't coerce them into playing injured at the risk of losing them for most of the season.
Wake up. You are not in a real war where the wounded must fight or die. Forget playing 'army field general' and look to the best coaches the NFL has had to offer. Look to those who coached football teams into greatness and try to emulate them. If the NFL stuck to it's rules and regulations, same as you do, this very game you're coaching may not have been aired. Tom, you do very well coaching the plays, but very poorly coaching the players. Life has many twists and turns that require exceptions. If you turn the respect that is demanded into respect that is deserved, you could have a nice long successful run here. That's what would be best long term for the Giants, the players and the fans (and you).

Giants did not play on Monday night last season.
Giants were not scheduled to play on Monday night this season.
Giants have lost 6 straight games on Monday night.
Giants last win on a Monday night was against the Cowboys on Oct 18, 1999.

Extra Notes - The way it was from a recent sports article.
The Superdome, built to house the Saints, became our country's first sporting convention center, and New Orleans became a pep rally subdivided by cobblestone streets.
Only in New Orleans could men persuade women to lift their shirts in exchange for beads, the most efficient use of trinkets since Europeans stole Manhattan.
Only in New Orleans could drive-through daiquiri shops thrive.
Only in New Orleans would the football rallying cry sound like this: "Who 'dat says dey gone beat 'dem Saints?"
Only in New Orleans could a younger man wonder, as the next day dawned, if the bar served beignets.

Next Game.
Sept 25, Giants at San Diego 8:30 PM - ESPN.
This will be a Sunday night game on the West Coast, and a chance for everyone to see what the Giants are made of this season.

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