2007 super bowl roster

2007 super bowl roster DEFAULT

New York Giants Roster

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New York Giants

National Football League (NFL)
Team Record:
Finishing 2nd in the NFL's East Division of the National Football Conference
Postseason: Won Super Bowl
Coach: Tom Coughlin ()
Location: New York, New York

New York Giants Statistics
New York Giants Results

The New York Giants of the National Football League ended the season with a record of 10 wins and 6 losses, finishing second in the NFL's East Division of the National Football Conference. The team compiled a postseason mark of

The Giants scored points, and the defense allowed Eli Manning directed the offense, passing for 3, yards. Plaxico Burress topped pass catchers, hauling in 70 passes for 1, yards. Amani Toomer and Jeremy Shockey contributed to the receiving game, too.

Brandon Jacobs ran for a team-leading 1, yards for New York.

Gibril Wilson and Sam Madison each seized 4 opponent throws. Osi Umenyiora led the defensive unit with 13 quarterback sacks, leading the way for a team which created 52 sacks.

Tom Coughlin coached the team. The New York Giants won the Super Bowl.

Click on column headings to sort.

#PlayerPos.Birth DateHeightWeightCollegeHometownGPGS
93Jay AlfordDTMay 28, 6'2"Penn St.Orange, NJ USA160
95Adrian AwasomDEOctober 25, 6'5"North Texas, Cameroon20
57Chase BlackburnLBJune 10, 6'3"AkronMarysville, OH USA160
77Kevin BootheTJuly 5, 6'5"CornellPlantation, FL USA10
89Kevin BossTEJanuary 11, 6'7"Western OregonCorvallis, OR USA132
44Ahmad BradshawKRMarch 19, 5'11"MarshallBluefield, VA USA120
17Plaxico BurressWRAugust 12, 6'5"Michigan St.Norfolk, VA USA1616
37James ButlerSSSeptember 7, 6'3"Georgia TechBainbridge, GA USA1312
96Barry CofieldLDTMarch 19, 6'3"NorthwesternCleveland, OH USA1615
30Craig DahlDBJune 7, 6'1"North Dakota St.Mankato, MN USA92
52Torrance DanielsLBDecember 27, 6'3"HardingClarendon, AR USA40
99Russell DavisDT-DEMarch 28, 6'4"North CarolinaHampton, VA USA110
51Zak DeOssieLBMay 24, 6'4"BrownNorth Andover, MD USA160
66David DiehlLTSeptember 15, 6'5"IllinoisChicago, IL USA1616
35Kevin DockeryLCBJanuary 8, 5'8"Mississippi St.Memphis, TN USA136
24Robert DouglasRBJuly 25, 6'1"MemphisSt. Louis, MO USA10
22Reuben DroughnsRBAugust 21, 5'11"OregonChicago, IL USA161
18Jeff FeaglesPMarch 7, 6'1"Miami (FL)Anaheim, CA USA160
39Madison HedgecockFBAugust 27, 6'3"North CarolinaWinston-Salem, NC USA159
87Domenik HixonWROctober 8, 6'2"AkronNeukirchen, Germany121
27Brandon JacobsRBJuly 6, 6'4"Southern IllinoisHouma, LA USA119
43Michael JohnsonFSMay 9, 6'3"ArizonaAustin, TX USA165
97Mathias KiwanukaLLBMarch 8, 6'5"Boston Col.Indianapolis, IN 109
13Jared LorenzenQBFebruary 14, 6'4"KentuckyCovington, KY USA20
29Sam MadisonRCBApril 23, 5'11"LouisvilleMonticello, FL USA1615
10Eli ManningQBJanuary 3, 6'4"MississippiNew Orleans, LA USA1616
88Michael MatthewsTEOctober 9, 6'4"Georgia TechAltadena, CA USA166
67Kareem McKenzieRTMay 24, 6'6"Penn St.Willingboro, NJ USA1616
25R.W. McQuartersPRDecember 21, 5'10"Oklahoma St.Tulsa, OK USA162
55Kawika MitchellRLBOctober 10, 6'1"GeorgiaWinter Springs, FL USA1616
19Anthony MixWRJanuary 20, 6'5"AuburnBay Minnette, AL USA40
83Sinorice MossWRDecember 28, 5'8"Miami (FL)Miami, FL USA132
60Shaun O'HaraCJune 23, 6'3"RutgersChicago, IL USA1616
36Patrick PassFBDecember 31, 5'10"GeorgiaScottsdale, GA USA10
58Antonio PierceMLBOctober 26, 6'1"ArizonaOntario, CA USA1616
98Fred RobbinsRDTMarch 25, 6'4"Wake ForestPensacola, FL USA1615
31Aaron RossLCBSeptember 15, 6'1"TexasSan Antonio, TX USA159
65Grey RuegamerC-GJune 11, 6'4"Arizona St.Las Vegas, NV USA160
69Rich SeubertLGMarch 30, 6'5"West. IllinoisRozellville, WI USA1616
80Jeremy ShockeyTEAugust 18, 6'5"Miami (FL)Ada, OK USA1414
12Steve SmithWRMay 6, 6'0"USCAnchorage, AK USA50
76Chris SneeRGJanuary 8, 6'3"Boston Col.Edison, NJ USA1616
92Michael StrahanLDENovember 21, 6'5"Texas SouthernHouston, TX USA1615
71Dave TollefsonDEMay 19, 6'4"NW Missouri St.Walnut Creek, CA USA60
81Amani ToomerWRSeptember 8, 6'3"MichiganBerkeley, CA USA1615
53Reggie TorborLLBJanuary 25, 6'2"AuburnBaton Rouge, LA USA165
91Justin TuckDEMarch 29, 6'5"Notre DameKellyton, AL USA162
9Lawrence TynesKMay 3, 6'1"TroyGreenock, Scotland160
85David TyreeWRJanuary 3, 6'0"SyracuseLivingston, NJ USA120
72Osi UmenyioraRDENovember 16, 6'3"TroyLondon, England1616
34Derrick WardRBAugust 30, 5'11"Fresno St.Los Angeles, CA USA85
26DJ WareRBFebruary 10, 6'1"GeorgiaRockmart, GA USA10
23Corey WebsterDBMarch 2, 6'0"LSUVacherie, LA USA143
79Guy WhimperTMay 21, 6'5"East CarolinaHonolulu, HI USA160
59Gerris WilkinsonLBApril 5, 6'3"Georgia TechOakland, CA USA130
28Gibril WilsonFSNovember 12, 6'0"TennesseeSan Jose, CA USA1313
2Anthony WrightQBFebruary 14, 6'1"South CarolinaVanceboro, NC USA40
75Manuel WrightDTApril 13, 6'6"USCCompton, CA USA60


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Sours: https://www.statscrew.com/football/roster/t-NYG/y

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Player Roster

ACTIVE BUCCANEERS TEAM ROSTER HISTORY#NamePOSHT.WT.BornCollegeEXP.Obtained by90Gaines AdamsDE6'5"06/08/ClemsonR - Draft - Round 1 #426Will AllenS6'1"06/17/Ohio State3 - Draft - Round 4 #35B.J. AskewFB6'3"08/19/Michigan4 - FA - Jets20Ronde BarberCB/S5'10"04/07/Virginia10 - Draft - Round 3 #6688Anthony BechtTE6'5"08/08/West Virginia7 - FA - Jets29Michael BennettRB5'9"08/13/Wisconsin6 - FA - Vikings9Josh BidwellP6'3"03/13/Oregon7 - FA - Packers58Quincy BlackLB6'2"02/28/New MexicoR - Draft - Round 3 #6889David BostonWR6'2"08/19/Ohio State1 - FA - Cardinals55Derrick BrooksLB6'0"04/18/Florida State12 - Draft - Round 1 #283Matt BryantPK5'9"05/29/Baylor5 - UFA - Giants31Phillip BuchanonCB5'11"09/19/Miami (FL)5 - FA - Texans72Dan BuenningG6'4"10/26/Wisconsin2 - Draft - Round 4 #93Kevin CarterDE/DT6'6"09/21/Florida12 - FA - Rams54Patrick ChukwurahLB/DE6'1"03/01/Wyoming6 - FA - Vikings87Brian ClarkWR6'2"12/26/North Carolina State1 - UFA - Broncos80Michael ClaytonWR6'3"10/13/LSU3 - Draft - Round 1 #1527Torrie CoxCB5'9"10/29/Pittsburgh3 - Draft - Round 6 #30Zack CrockettFB6'2"02/02/Florida State12 - FA - Colts33Kenneth DarbyRB5'10"12/26/AlabamaR - Draft - Round 7 #69Anthony DavisT6'4"03/27/Virginia Tech3 - FA - Undrafted22Sammy DavisCB6'1"04/08/Texas A&M4 - FA - Chargers48Andrew EconomosLS6'1"06/24/Georgia Tech1 - FA - Undrafted84Joey GallowayWR5'11"11/20/Ohio State12 - FA - Seahawks7Jeff GarciaQB6'1"02/24/San Jose State8 - UFA - Eagles28Lionel GatesRB6'0"03/13/Louisville1 - FA - Bills83Chas GessnerQB6'1"01/27/ToledoR - Draft - Round 6 #5Bruce GradkowskiWR6'4"08/17/BrownR - FA - NFL Europe34Earnest GrahamRB5'9"01/15/Florida2 - FA - Undrafted71Jovan HayeDT6'2"06/21/Vanderbilt2 - FA - Panthers57Adam HaywardLB6'0"06/23/Portland StateR - Draft - Round 6 # 87Keith HeinrichTE6'5"03/19/Sam Houston State5 - FA - Panthers19Ike HilliardWR5'11"04/05/Florida10 - UFA - Giants95Chris HovanDT6'2"05/12/Boston College7 - FA - Vikings28Tanard JacksonS6'0"07/21/SyracuseR - Draft - Round 4 #89Mark JonesWR5'9"03/03/Tennessee3 - Draft - Round 7 #75Davin JosephG6'3"11/22/Oklahoma1 - Draft - Round 1 #2359Cato JuneLB6'0"11/18/Michigan4 - FA - Colts25Brian KellyCB5'11"01/14/USC9 - Draft - Round 2 #4568Matt LehrC/G6'2"04/25/Virginia Tech6 - FA - Cowboys15Chad LucasWR6'1"11/07/Troy, Alabama State2 - FA - Packers12Luke McCownQB6'3"07/12/Louisiana Tech3 - Trade - Browns56Ryan NeceLB6'3"02/24/UCLA5 - FA - Undrafted30Donte NicholsonS6'1"12/18/Oklahoma2 - Draft - Round 5 #39Kalvin PearsonS5'10"10/22/Morehouse, Grambling State5 - FA - Browns70Donald PennT6'5"04/27/Utah StateR - FA - Vikings96Greg PetersonDT6'5"01/21/North Carolina CentralR - Draft - Round 5 #79Luke PetitgoutT6'6"06/16/Notre Dame8 - FA - Giants23Jermaine PhillipsS6'1"03/27/Georgia5 - Draft - Round 5 #21Sabby PiscitelliS6'3"08/24/Oregon StateR - Draft - Round 2 #6432Michael PittmanRB6'0"08/14/Fresno State9 - FA - Cardinals37Kelwan RatiffCB5'11"04/19/Florida9 - FA - Bengals73Dennis RolandT6'9"03/10/GeorgiaR - FA - Undrafted51Barrett RuudLB6'1"05/20/Nebraska2 - Draft - Round 2 #3678Arron SearsG6'4"10/25/TennesseeR - Draft - Round 2 #352Chris SimmsQB6'5"08/29/Texas3 - Draft - Round 3 #9798Ryan SimsDT6'4"05/04/North Carolina5 - FA - Chiefs81Alex SmithTE6'4"05/22/Stanford2 - Draft - Round 3 #7194Greg SpiresDE6'1"08/12/Florida State9 - FA - Patriots17Micheal SpurlockWR5'10"01/31/Mississippi1 - UFA - Cardinals85Maurice StovallWR6'4"02/21/Notre Dame1 - Draft - Round 3 #9050Jeremiah TrotterLB6'1"01/20/S. F. Austin9 - FA - Eagles65Jeremy TruebloodT6'8"05/10/Boston College1 - Draft - Round 2 #5876John WadeC6'5"01/25/Marshall9 - FA - Jaguars91Stylez G. WhiteDE6'3"07/25/MinnesotaR - FA - Texans24Carnell "Cadillac" WilliamsRB5'11"04/21/Auburn2 - Draft - Round 1 #5Team Total - Average 6'" 16 - games played
Sours: http://www.buccaneersfan.com/Pages/TeamZone/Roster/seasonhtm
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New York Giants

Offensive StartersQBEli Manning26316 for , 3, yards, 23 td, 20 int, & 29 rushes for 69 yards and 1 tdRBBrandon Jacobs2529 rushes for 1, yards, 4 td, & 23 catches for yards and 2 tdFBMadison Hedgecock26290 rushes for yards, 0 td, & 6 catches for 45 yards and 0 tdWRPlaxico Burress3071670 catches for 1, yards, 12 tdWRAmani Toomer33111559 catches for yards, 3 tdTEJeremy Shockey2751457 catches for yards, 3 td, & 1 rush for 6 yards and 0 tdLTDavid Diehl27416LGRich Seubert286161 fumble recoveredCShaun O'Hara30716RGChris Snee253161 fumble recoveredRTKareem McKenzie286161 fumble recoveredDefensive StartersLDEMichael Strahan361415 sacks, 0 interceptions, 1 fumble recoveredLDTBarry Cofield23115 sacks, 0 interceptions, 0 fumbles recoveredRDTFred Robbins30715 sacks, 0 interceptions, 0 fumbles recoveredRDEOsi Umenyiora*26416 sacks, 0 interceptions, 2 fumbles recoveredLLBMathias Kiwanuka2419 sacks, 0 interceptions, 0 fumbles recoveredMLBAntonio Pierce29616 sacks, 1 interception, 2 fumbles recoveredRLBKawika Mitchell28416 sacks, 1 interception, 1 fumble recoveredLCBAaron Ross25Rook9 sacks, 3 interceptions, 0 fumbles recoveredRCBSam Madison331015 sacks, 4 interceptions, 1 fumble recoveredSSJames Butler25212 sacks, 1 interception, 1 fumble recoveredFSGibril Wilson26313 sacks, 4 interceptions, 1 fumble recovered
Sours: https://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/nyg/_roster.htm
Giants Vs Patriots 2007 Super Bowl Highlights

New York Giants season

83rd season in franchise history; third Super Bowl win

The season was the New York Giants' 83rd in the National Football League, their 32nd playing their home games at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and their fourth under head coachTom Coughlin.

The Giants finished the regular season 10–6 and in second place in the NFC East, improving upon their 8–8 record in in which they finished third in their division. They qualified for the playoffs as a wild-card team as the #5 seed, and beat the #4 seed Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Next, they defeated the top-seeded Dallas Cowboys, and the #2 seed Green Bay Packers (both of whom they had lost to in their first two games of the season by ten points or more) to become the National Football Conference (NFC) representative in Super Bowl XLII. There, they defeated the heavily favored and previously undefeated 18–0 New England Patriots and spoiled their perfect season, aided by the famous Manning to Tyree forward pass.[1]

The New York Giants became the 9th wild card team in NFL history to reach the Super Bowl and the 5th wild card team to win the Super Bowl, and the very first NFC wild card to accomplish the feat. They were the third team in history to win three road playoff games en route to a Super Bowl and set a league record for most consecutive road wins in a single season (11), though the Super Bowl is played on a neutral field rather than an opponent's stadium. It was the 7th league championship season for the New York Giants and their first since they won Super Bowl XXV in This season would also mark the end of defensive end Michael Strahan's NFL career as he retired following the Giants' Super Bowl victory.

marked the third consecutive season that the Giants made the playoffs, which was only the second time that had happened since the AFL-NFL merger in Tom Coughlin joined Bill Parcells, Steve Owen, and Allie Sherman as the only head coaches in the history of the team to lead the Giants to the postseason three consecutive years.

The Giants season is widely regarded as one of the greatest cinderella stories in professional sports history, not only did they beat one of the greatest teams of all time in the undefeated Patriots, they did so as a wild-card team that had to win three playoff games on the road to get to Super Bowl XLII, and after looking very mediocre at times during the regular season.[2] In fact, based on regular-season performance, the New York Giants were the worst team to ever reach a Super Bowl,[3] a curiosity later surpassed when the New York Giants won Super Bowl XLVI to become the first team with a negative point differential to win a Super Bowl.[4] NFL Films named the Giants as the 53rd greatest team of all time in their countdown of the top teams in football history.[5]

Offseason[edit]

Expectations[edit]

After their poor finish to the season, where the Giants lost 7 of their last 9 games after a 6–2 start (albeit achieving a playoff berth in the last week of the season), expectations for the Giants were generally low. Many pundits began to consider Eli Manning as a potential draft bust, especially when considering fellow draft pick Ben Roethlisberger's Super Bowl run in and Philip Rivers leading his team, the Chargers, to a 14–2 regular season in ; making matters worse, older brother Peyton Manning, who Eli was often compared unfavorably to, had led the Colts to the Super Bowl victory that same year and won the MVP of the game. At the same time, head coach Tom Coughlin came under intense criticism due to his fiery coaching style and strict team rules, and many (including fans) believed that he deserved to be fired after the team's collapse in the second half of the season. In particular, they noted the team's lack of discipline and unity down the stretch and considered these actions a reflection of Coughlin's coaching. Finally Tiki Barber, the Giants's all-time leading rusher and the catalyst for much of their success the previous two seasons, retired at just 31 years of age to enter a broadcasting career.

The Giants decided to give Tom Coughlin one more chance heading into the season, giving him a one-year contract extension. This essentially indicated that he needed to get the Giants into the postseason in order to receive a long-term contract extension. After his family demonstrated concern over his on-field persona and his apparent anger towards his players, Coughlin decided to undergo a personality change heading into the season. While his strict team rules (most notoriously, his five-minute early rule for a team meeting) remained in place, he became less angry and more encouraging towards his players, and the players took note of his change. Coughlin also set up a leadership committee with Eli Manning and other team captains in order to relate to his players better.

The Giants also entered the season with two new coordinators. Coughlin promoted quarterbacks coach Kevin Gilbride to offensive coordinator, a position he would hold until his retirement after the season. He also fired defensive coordinator Tim Lewis and replaced him with Steve Spagnuolo, who would have a crucial impact on the Giants's defense.

Defensive end Michael Strahan held out for the entirety of training camp. Having previously been disillusioned with Tom Coughlin's coaching methods, he spent the offseason debating whether or not he would come back for the season, and decided that since he had already played for 14 seasons, he wouldn't have needed the training camp anyway. He eventually returned to the team mere weeks before the season started. Despite his training camp holdout and a hefty fine for not attending the camp, he was still elected as a team captain.

Expectations, however, were still low as few predicted that the Giants would make the playoffs. Perception grew worse as Tiki Barber, now an analyst for NBC, began attacking his former team, particularly Tom Coughlin and especially Eli Manning. Barber attacked Manning not only as a non-productive quarterback, but declared that his leadership skills were "almost comical." When asked about Barber's comments, Manning noted that he didn't have to take the comments seriously, considering that Barber announced his intentions to leave the team in the middle of the previous season.

[6][7][8]

Giants free agents heading into the season[edit]

Players whose contracts expire become free agents, and are classified (or "tagged") according to the players' collective bargaining agreement as restricted free agents (RFA), unrestricted free agents (UFA), or exclusive-rights free agents (ERFA). Players listed in green were retained by the team, while those in red were signed by another franchise. Restricted free agents are indicated by the round in which the player was originally drafted, as this determines qualifying offers and compensation.

Draft Class[edit]

Main article: NFL Draft

NOTES:

The Giants were awarded an additional seventh-round pick (# overall) as a compensatory selection.

Training camp photos[edit]

Preseason[edit]

Regular season[edit]

Standings[edit]

Staff[edit]

Roster[edit]

Regular season[edit]

Week 1: at Dallas Cowboys[edit]

The Giants opened up their campaign with a 45–35 loss to the Dallas Cowboys at Texas Stadium. For the second straight year, the Giants left Dallas with injuries to key starters including DE Osi Umenyiora, RB Brandon Jacobs, and QB Eli Manning. Before suffering a separated shoulder in the fourth quarter, Manning put on a stellar performance, completing 28 of 41 passes, for yards, 4 touchdowns and just 1 interception. However, a horrid defensive performance overshadowed his play.

The Giants got off to a fast start as Eli hit Plaxico Burress on a yard touchdown pass off play action to open up the scoring. Burress and Manning would connect for 3 touchdowns on the night. After a Dallas took a 17–6 lead late in the half, Eli led the Giants on another drive, capped off to his second strike to Burress. Burress on the night caught 9 passes for receiving yards. The Giants closed to within one at half's end following a Lawrence Tynes field goal after a Dallas fumble.

Romo hit Terrell Owens on a yard pass to give Dallas an 8-point lead. After the Giants cut the lead to five on another Tynes field goal, Dallas increased the margin to 12 as Romo capped off a quick four play drive with a 9-yard rush. The Cowboys appeared to put the game away with yet another Romo touchdown, once again finding Terrell Owens on a wide open catch and run, upping margin to 38– Eli and the Giants responded with two straight scoring drives. One finished with a dumpoff touchdown pass from Manning to reserve running back Derrick Ward and the other with Burress' 3rd touchdown, cutting the Dallas lead to three.

On a crucial 3rd and seven late in the game, Romo hit backup wideout Sam Hurd for a yard touchdown. With Manning injuring his shoulder, backup Jared Lorenzen finished the game for the Giants at quarterback late in the fourth quarter. Amani Toomer in his return from a knee injury, notched 9 catches for 91 yards while Burress gained Justin Tuck and Gibril Wilson recorded the Giants' only sack and interception of the night respectively in the 45–35 loss as the Giants began the season at 0–1.

It would be the only road loss for the Giants in the season.[10]

Week 2: vs. Green Bay Packers[edit]

The Giants playing defense against the Packers

The Giants played their Week 2 home opener against the Green Bay Packers. After both teams missed a field goal to open the game, Green Bay got on the board first with a 6-yard run by rookie DeShawn Wynn. The Giants responded with a yard scoring strike by Eli Manning to Plaxico Burress. The Giants got a Lawrence Tynes field goal and a 10–7 half time lead.

In the second half, the Packers drove 51 yards to start the second half. Favre capped off the scoring drive with a 2-yard pass to Bubba Franks for a 14–10 lead the Packers would not relinquish. The Giants responded with another drive but once again, an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, this one on Amani Toomer, hurt the Giants. Tynes kicked a second field goal, pulling the Giants to within one.[11]

The Packers went on to score 21 unanswered points.[11]

With the loss, the Giants would fall to 0–2 for the first time since

Week 3: at Washington Redskins[edit]

In the first quarter, New York got the first score as kicker Lawrence Tynes hit a yard field goal. The Redskins took the lead with RB Clinton Portis getting a 1-yard TD run. In the second quarter, Redskins QB Jason Campbell threw an 8-yard TD pass to TE Chris Cooley, while kicker Shaun Suisham ended the half with a yard field goal that gave Washington a 17–3 lead.[12]

The Giants on defense against the Redskins

With the Giants staring at a point deficit, and an 0–2 start to their season, the Giants came out strong to start the second half. In the third quarter, QB Eli Manning finally got the Giants offense turned around and RB Reuben Droughns would score on a 1-yard TD run to cut the lead in half.

In the fourth quarter, Droughns rushed again for a 1-yard touchdown, while Manning completed a yard TD pass to WR Plaxico Burress, giving the Giants a startling 24–17 lead against the home team.

In the game's final moments, Washington found first and goal at the Giants 1-yard line. New York's defense then proceeded to make a goal-line stand as they stopped RB Ladell Betts from getting into the end zone on 4th down during the final seconds of the game. This goal line stand was known as the initial catalyst of the Giants' Super Bowl season.

With the win, the Giants improved to 1–2. [10]

Week 4: vs. Philadelphia Eagles[edit]

Coming off their divisional road win over the Redskins, the Giants went home for a Sunday night divisional duel with the Philadelphia Eagles. New York's defense held the Eagles to no first half points, while in the second quarter, New York got on the board first with QB Eli Manning completing a 9-yard TD pass to WR Plaxico Burress for the only score of the half. In the third quarter, the Giants increased its lead with kicker Lawrence Tynes getting a yard field goal, along with LB Kawika Mitchell recovering a fumble, getting up, and returning the fumble yards for a touchdown. In the fourth quarter, the Eagles would get their only points of the game with kicker David Akers making a yard field goal.

On the night, New York's defense sacked QB Donovan McNabb 12 times (tying an NFL record), with half of those sacks coming from DE Osi Umenyiora. Also, DE Michael Strahan had one sack in the game to surpass Lawrence Taylor as the Giants' All-Time Sack Leader (Taylor was present at the game).

With the victory, New York improved to 2–2.[10]

Week 5: vs. New York Jets[edit]

The Giants clinched their third straight victory with a 35–24 triumph over the New York Jets. The Giants scored 28 points in the decisive second half to overcome a point deficit. Rookie CB Aaron Ross made his presence felt with a crucial interception off of QB Chad Pennington with the Jets driving and up three in the third then sealed the win with an interception return for a touchdown late in the fourth.

The Jets got off to a fast start as returning running back Brandon Jacobs fumbled and the Jets' Kerry Rhodes returned it for a TD. The Giants responded with a 9-play, yard drive ending in a touchdown run by Derrick Ward. However, the Giants defense, susceptible to third down conversions the first week of the season struggled again today and allowed the Jets to drive 93 yards late in the half for a 14–7 lead. The Jets were 3 for 3 on third down on the drive including some big catches by Laveranues Coles. Pennington hit Brad Smith for a yard touchdown. After a bad interception from Eli Manning, the Jets added a field goal by Mike Nugent for a 17–7 halftime lead.

The Giants fought back, going back to the ground game to start the second half. Plaxico Burress added a yard completion from Manning and Jacobs pounded it in for a yard touchdown. The Jets responded as Leon Washington ran 98 yards for a touchdown. Big Blue again fought back, driving 68 yards featuring a mix of runs and passes. Jeremy Shockey notched his first touchdown of the season with a yard catch and run bringing the Giants within three after three quarters. The Jets responded with a drive of their own including several third down conversions but rookie Aaron Ross made the first of several big plays including a deep interception. The Giants drove 99 yards, which ended with a spectacular yard touchdown catch and run by Plaxico Burress, who stiff-armed a Jet defender down the sideline.

With the Jets driving for a score, Ross struck again, intercepting Pennington and returned it 43 yards to clinch the win. Brandon Jacobs notched his first ever yard rushing performance, Manning managed yards and 2 touchdowns despite a poor first half, Osi Umenyiora added a sack and Sam Madison added his first interception of the season.

The Giants had now won four straight regular season meetings against the Jets and improved to 3–2 on the season.

Week 6: at Atlanta Falcons[edit]

The Giants cruised to their fourth straight win with an easy 31–10 victory over the Atlanta Falcons on Monday Night Football. After the Falcons moved the ball and scored three points on a yard field goal by Morten Andersen, the Giants took the lead on a five-yard play-action touchdown pass from Eli Manning to Amani Toomer. The Falcons responded as Jerious Norwood ran 67 yards untouched, putting the Falcons on top 10–7. New York responded with a quick six-play, yard drive capped off by a 1-yard touchdown run by Reuben Droughns for a 14–

After the defense stopped Atlanta again, the Giants took command as Manning hit Plaxico Burress for his eighth and league-lead-tying touchdown from 42 yards out and a 21–10 lead. The Giants squandered several chances to add on more points as the team struggled moving at the end of the first half and Eli Manning threw a late interception.

In the second half, the defense continued to dominate. Fred Robbins, Antonio Pierce and Justin Tuck notched sacks for Big Blue and rookie Aaron Ross added his third interception in two weeks. The Giants added a Lawrence Tynes field goal from 32 yards out for a point lead, then capped off the win with a nine-yard touchdown run by Derrick Ward. On the night, the Giants rushed for yards, Eli Manning passed for yards along with a pair of touchdowns and interceptions and the defense shut down Atlanta following the slow start.

Burress led the Giants with 97 receiving yards and Amani Toomer became the Giants all-time reception leader, catching 7 passes for 89 yards including his early touchdown. The Giants improved to 4–2 and took a four-game winning streak into the next week's game against the 49ers.

  • The Giants and Falcons series has now been won by the road team the last 12 meetings.
  • The Giants notched their th franchise win.
  • The Nielsen rating ( million viewers) was the lowest in Monday Night Football history, however it was the highest rated cable program for the week. The decisive Game 4 of the National League Championship Series was played at the same time.[13]

Week 7: vs. San Francisco 49ers[edit]

The Giants recorded their fifth straight victory with a convincing 33–15 win over the San Francisco 49ers at Giants Stadium. Things started off well as the Giants drove right down the field on their opening possession. The balanced, well-executed seven-minute drive was capped off by a 4-yard touchdown pass from Eli Manning to Amani Toomer. The extra point was missed by Lawrence Tynes. On their next possession, the Giants were driving for more, but a tipped ball resulted in an interception inside the red zone. The 49ers responded with a nice drive of their own, aided by a personal foul on linebacker Antonio Pierce and several third down conversions. San Francisco cashed in with a touchdown from Trent Dilfer to Arnaz Battle.

Following a Frank Gore fumble, the Giants took control. The running game, which accounted for total yards helped the Giants move back in front. Brandon Jacobs scored on a five-yard run for a 13–7 lead. After an interception by Sam Madison, the Giants added a yard field goal by Tynes. Tynes made it 19–7 at the half with another field goal, this time from 39 yards, inside the final minute.

The Giants defense dominated in the second half, notching six sacks and four total turnovers. Osi Umenyiora put the game away with a sack, forced fumble, and yard touchdown return up the field for a 26–7 lead. The Niners got two points back on a blocked punt out of the end zone but Antonio Pierce redeemed himself for two earlier personal fouls by intercepting Trent Dilfer and returning the ball inside the After a flag on the 49ers, Manning threw his second touchdown, this time to Jeremy Shockey for a 33–9 lead. The 49ers scored late to provide the final points in the 33–15 win.

On the day, Brandon Jacobs rushed for yards, Manning completed 18 of 31 passes for nearly yards with two touchdowns and an interception, and the defense notched six sacks: for Michael Strahan, for Justin Tuck, 1 for Aaron Ross and 1 for Umenyiora. Pierce and Madison provided the two Giants interceptions.[14]

For the fourth consecutive year under Tom Coughlin, the Giants were 5–2 after seven games.

Week 8: at Miami Dolphins (London)[edit]

The Giants got their sixth straight win with a rain-soaked 13–10 victory over the winless Miami Dolphins in the first International Series game, held at England's Wembley Stadium. Persistent rain throughout the day had soaked the field and hurt both teams on offense as the field was torn up for most of the afternoon, but the Giants survived to get to 6–2 on the season as they headed for their bye week.

A giant Giants jersey is unfurled on the field at Wembley Stadium

After a missed Miami field goal on the opening drive of the game, the Giants traveled down the field, mixing up a combination of run and pass. Brandon Jacobs had a big day, running in the rain for yards on 23 carries. Eli Manning, who threw for only 59 yards in the game, missed a wide open Amani Toomer in the end zone from inside the five, and the Giants had to settle for a yard field goal from Lawrence Tynes. The Giants extended their lead to 10 with a play, yard drive in the second quarter. Jacobs and Reuben Droughns ran heavily on the drive and Eli Manning evaded the Dolphins defense, scrambling 10 yards for the game's first touchdown. After a Cleo Lemon fumble, which was recovered by Michael Strahan, the Giants stretched the lead to 13 at the half with a yard kick from Tynes.

In the third quarter, after recovering a Manning fumble, the Dolphins drove the ball down inside the Giants 5. However, a Lemon muffed snap forced the Dolphins to kick a field goal. The Giants continued to run well with Jacobs, and had a chance to tack on 3 more points but Tynes missed badly on a yard field goal. In the final two minutes, the Dolphins scored their first touchdown with Ted Ginn Jr.'s first ever NFL touchdown reception. An attempted onside kick from Jay Feely skidded off the wet surface straight out of bounds, enabling the Giants to run out the clock for the win.

For the day, Jacobs ran for his career-high yards, and Fred Robbins and Kawika Mitchell recorded sacks. The Giants have won six in a row for the first time since Eli Manning scored the NFL's first regular season touchdown outside of North America.

With their sixth-straight win, the Giants entered their bye week at 6–2.[10]

Week vs. Dallas Cowboys[edit]

Coming off their bye week, the Giants went home, donned their alternate red uniforms, and played the Dallas Cowboys. In the first quarter, New York trailed early as Cowboys QB Tony Romo completed a yard TD pass to TE Tony Curtis. The Giants responded as QB Eli Manning completed an 8-yard TD pass to TE Jeremy Shockey. In the second quarter, Dallas regained the lead as kicker Nick Folk made a yard field goal. The G-Men took the lead with RB Reuben Droughns getting a 1-yard TD run. Afterwards, the Cowboys retook the lead with Romo completing a yard TD pass to WR Patrick Crayton. Originally, the Giants were willing to be down by 3 at halftime. However, because of a taunting penalty on Dallas LB Kevin Burnett placed them near midfield, New York went for some points. The Giants would tie the game with kicker Lawrence Tynes getting a yard field goal.

In the third quarter, Romo completed a yard TD pass to WR Terrell Owens and the Cowboys regained the lead. In the fourth quarter, the Giants made a yard field goal from Tynes. Afterwards, Dallas' Romo and Owens hooked up with each other again on a yard TD pass.[15]

With the loss, New York fell to 6–3. They have not worn their red uniforms since.[10]

During the season series against the Cowboys, the Giants pass defense allowed 8 passing touchdowns, despite only allowing 8 passing touchdowns from their previous opponents this year.

Week at Detroit Lions[edit]

The Giants flew to Ford Field for a Week 11 intraconference duel with the Detroit Lions. In the first quarter, New York took the early lead as kicker Lawrence Tynes made a yard field goal for the only score of the period. In the second quarter, the Giants increased their lead as QB Eli Manning completed a yard TD pass to RB Brandon Jacobs for the only score of the period.

In the third quarter, the Lions got on the board as kicker Jason Hanson made a yard field goal. New York would reply with Tynes kicking a yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, the Giants improved their lead as Tynes made a yard field goal. Detroit's QB Jon Kitna completed a yard TD pass to WR Calvin Johnson.

With the win, the Giants improved to 7–3.[10]

LB Mathias Kiwanuka suffered a broken left fibula, ending his season.

Week vs. Minnesota Vikings[edit]

Coming off their road win over the Lions, the Giants went home for a Week 12 intraconference duel with the Minnesota Vikings. In the first quarter, New York trailed early as Vikings QB Tarvaris Jackson completed a yard TD pass to WR Sidney Rice. The Giants responded with RB Reuben Droughns getting a 1-yard TD run. Minnesota retook the lead with safety Darren Sharper returning an interception 20 yards for a touchdown. In the second quarter, Vikings' RB Chester Taylor got an 8-yard TD run, along with kicker Ryan Longwell making a yard field goal.

In the third quarter, Giants' kicker Lawrence Tynes made a yard field goal, and Minnesota's Longwell made a yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, the Vikings' safety Dwight Smith returned an interception 93 yards for a touchdown, along with LB Chad Greenway returning an interception 37 yards for a touchdown. New York's QB Eli Manning completed a 6-yard TD pass to WR Plaxico Burress to complete the scoring.

With the loss, the Giants fell to 7–4.[10]

Eli Manning was intercepted four times (with three of his interceptions being returned for touchdowns). He became the third NFL QB since to have three interceptions get returned for touchdowns. His performance was all the more embarrassing as the Vikings had the league's worst pass defense in (albeit with the league's strongest run defense), and were playing in this game without starting corner Antoine Winfield.

Week at Chicago Bears[edit]

Hoping to rebound after a loss to the Vikings, the Giants flew to Soldier Field for a Week 13 intraconference duel with the defending NFC champion Chicago Bears. In the first quarter, New York trailed early as Bears QB Rex Grossman completed a 1-yard TD pass to TE Desmond Clark for the only score of the period. In the second quarter, the Giants got on the board as RB Derrick Ward got a 2-yard TD run. Chicago responded with kicker Robbie Gould getting a yard and a yard field goal.

In the third quarter, the Bears increased their lead with Gould making a yard field goal for the only score of the period. In the fourth quarter, New York QB Eli Manning completed a 6-yard TD pass to WR Amani Toomer, along with RB Reuben Droughns getting a 2-yard TD run. New York improved to 8–4 with the victory.

Derrick Ward (24 carries for yards and 1 touchdown) left the game in the 4th quarter with a fractured fibula, effectively ending his season.

Week at Philadelphia Eagles[edit]

Coming off their road win over the Bears, the Giants flew to Lincoln Financial Field for a Week 14 NFC East rematch with the Philadelphia Eagles. In the first quarter, New York trailed early as Eagles QB Donovan McNabb completed an yard TD pass to RB Brian Westbrook for the only score of the period. In the second quarter, the Giants started to draw close as kicker Lawrence Tynes managed to get a yard and a yard field goal.

In the third quarter, Philadelphia responded with kicker David Akers getting a yard field goal. Afterwards, New York took the lead with QB Eli Manning completing a yard TD pass to WR Plaxico Burress, along with Tynes kicking a yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, the Eagles tried to come back as Akers nailed a yard field goal. In the final seconds, Philadelphia had a chance to tie the game and force overtime. Fortunately for the Giants, Akers missed a yard field goal off the right upright with 1 second left to preserve the victory and the season-sweep.

With the win, the Giants improved to 9–4.[10]

This also marked the first time since their Super Bowl XXXV appearance of that New York had won 6-straight road games.

Week vs. Washington Redskins[edit]

Coming off their season-sweeping road win over the Eagles, the Giants went home for a Week 15 Sunday night NFC East rematch with the Washington Redskins. In the first quarter, New York trailed early as Redskins kicker Shaun Suisham managed to get a yard field goal for the only score of the period. In the second quarter, the Giants continued to trail as Suisham kicked a yard field goal, along with RB Ladell Betts getting a yard TD run. New York would get on the board with kicker Lawrence Tynes getting a yard field goal. Washington would end the half with Suisham nailing a yard field goal.

In the third quarter, the Giants' deficit climbed as Redskins RB Clinton Portis getting a 5-yard TD run (with a failed 2-point conversion). New York tried to make a comeback as QB Eli Manning completed a yard TD pass to TE Kevin Boss. However, the wind and Washington's defense prevented any hopes.

Eli Manning set a record of futility in the game with 35 incomplete passes, setting a record for most incomplete passes in an NFL game since the AFL/NFL merger. In fairness to Manning, his receivers also did not play well, dropping at least eight of his passes. Washington quarterback Todd Collins, making his first NFL start since in place of the injured Jason Campbell, didn't play much better, going 8–25, but got the win.

With the loss, not only did the Giants fall to 9–5, but they also lost TE Jeremy Shockey for the year in the third quarter with a broken left fibula. It would be his final appearance as a New York Giant. Due to the Giants's increasing problems with Shockey's attitude and the emergence of Kevin Boss during the remainder of the season, he became expendable and was eventually traded to the New Orleans Saints.

Week at Buffalo Bills[edit]

The Giants took their 6–1 road record to Buffalo in search of clinching a playoff spot. They were able to rebound nicely from the week 15 home loss to Washington with a 38–21 win over the Bills. The Giants utilized their running game to wear down the Bills, as Brandon Jacobs rushed for yards and 2 touchdowns and rookie Ahmad Bradshaw rushed for yards and a touchdown, including an yard hustle that gave the Giants a 31–21 lead in the fourth quarter. Eli Manning had a rough day throwing the ball, as the harsh conditions forced him into completing just 7 of 16 passes and throwing for only yards with two interceptions. Kawika Mitchell and Corey Webster also returned interceptions for touchdowns.

The Giants rallied early from a 14–0, first-quarter deficit to win a game played through rain, wind, and snow. Early on, it appeared that the Bills would dominate the game, with Trent Edwards finding Michael Gaines for a three-yard touchdown to make it 7–0. After the Giants punted, Edwards hit Lee Evans for a 4-yard touchdown to make it 14–0. As the weather changed from windy with no precipitation to windy and snowy, so did the Giants's fortunes. In the second quarter, Brandon Jacobs ran for a six-yard touchdown, then on the next drive had his longest run of the season, a yard touchdown run to tie the game at A Lawrence Tynes field goal made it 17–14 at the half.

In the third quarter, a Marshawn Lynch touchdown run and a goal line stand by the Bills made the score 21–17 Bills heading into the final quarter. However, the Giants ran away with the contest in the fourth. With to go in the 4th, Trent Edwards's pass was deflected and intercepted by linebacker (and future Bill) Kawika Mitchell, who returned it 20 yards for a touchdown for the go-ahead score. With to go, the Giants got the ball back on their own yard line. During the second half, rookie 7th-round pick Ahmad Bradshaw, who seldom played outside of special teams before this game but who now had an opportunity due to Derrick Ward's injury and Reuben Droughns's declining play, checked into the game. Bradshaw (who, unusual for a Giant, played with a single "y" on one side of his helmet instead of the standard "ny" in this game) received a handoff towards the left side of the line, cut towards the left sideline, received a key block from receiver Plaxico Burress, and sprinted down the sideline 88 yards for a touchdown to make it 31– Bradshaw's run is the third-longest in Giants history, with Tiki Barber's yard touchdown against the Raiders on New Year's Eve being the longest. Just three plays later, Trent Edwards was intercepted by cornerback Corey Webster, who returned Edwards's errant pass 34 yards for the game-clinching touchdown.

While Eli Manning played poorly again, going 7–15 for just yards with two interceptions and four fumbles (two lost), Trent Edwards also had a poor performance, going just for yards. Although he threw for 2 touchdowns, he also threw 3 interceptions (2 returned for touchdowns) and fumbled twice (though both were recovered by other Bills), and was just 3–19 after his first two drives. Ahmad Bradshaw ran for yards on just 17 carries, while Brandon Jacobs ran for a career-high yards on 25 carries with 2 touchdowns. Another important stat to note is that all 59 points in the game were scored going towards the east end zone.

With the win, the Giants improved to 10–5 to clinch their third consecutive playoff berth.

[16]

Week vs. New England Patriots[edit]

Main article: New England Patriots – New York Giants game

This marked the first time since Super Bowl I that an NFL game was simulcast by more than one television network. It was the first time an NFL game was carried on three national networks (CBS, NBC, and NFL Network) with an additional million viewers seeing the game on local NY and MA networks. The game was originally scheduled to be broadcast on NFL Network only, but Roger Goodell allowed other stations to broadcast it due to the Patriots being 15–0 and needing just one more win to become the first team to go 16–0 in the regular season. There was disagreement surrounding coach Tom Coughlin's decision to play all his starters, some of them playing injured, notably Plaxico Burress who had an ankle injury and missed most of practice during the end of the season and the Giants postseason run. A Giant win would have no effect in the playoffs the following Sunday, as the Giants had earned the #5 seed as a wildcard and Dallas had won the division with the best record in the NFC. By playing his starters, he risked losing additional players on an already banged up roster playing against a heavily favored Patriots team, which was playing for the history books to go undefeated in the regular season.

The Giants were playing for pride and momentum, and nobody had realized at the time that this game eventually became a preview of Super Bowl XLII. The Giants were the final team to have a chance to end the Patriots' shot at a perfect season (not including playoffs). The Giants ended up losing a thrilling 38–35 contest to the Patriots, in which the Patriots set numerous offensive records while becoming the first ever 16–0 team in the regular season. Tom Brady set a single season record for TD passes, Randy Moss set a record for TD receptions, and the Patriots as a whole set a record for most points scored. Eli Manning played well, completing 22 of 32 passes for yards while throwing 4 touchdowns and 1 interception, the lone interception of the game. The Giants led 28–16 in the third quarter, the Patriots' largest deficit this season. Also, Brandon Jacobs reached 1, yards rushing after gaining 67 yards on the ground on 15 carries. With the loss, the Giants ended the regular season at 10–6, with a road playoff game set on January 6 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Playoffs[edit]

Main article: –08 NFL playoffs

NFC Wild Card Game: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers[edit]

The Giants ended their postseason skid with a 24–14 victory over the #4 Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Eli Manning won his first career playoff game and Tom Coughlin won his first playoff game with the Giants. The Giants got off to a rough start, at the end of the first quarter they trailed 7–0 and had gained only −2 yards on offense. But the Giants responded with a pair of touchdowns in the second quarter to take a 14–7 lead heading into halftime. At the start of the second half, Micheal Spurlock of the Bucs fumbled the kickoff return, which was recovered by Corey Webster. The Giants were able to get a field goal off of the ensuing drive, extending their lead to 17–7. Later in the quarter, Webster intercepted a pass from Jeff Garcia in the end zone. In the fourth quarter, Manning threw a touchdown pass to Amani Toomer for a 24–7 lead. Garcia would lead the Bucs down the field on their next possession for a touchdown, but the damage had been done as the Bucs lost the game 24–14 after Garcia threw another interception late in the fourth quarter. Manning's final stat line was impressive: 20 of 27 for yards, 2 touchdowns and no interceptions.

With the win, the Giants improved their overall record to 11–6.[10]

NFC Divisional Game: at Dallas Cowboys[edit]

The Giants advanced to the NFC Title Game for the first time since with a 21–17 victory over the top-seeded Dallas Cowboys. The Giants were not expected to win, or even give the Cowboys much difficulty, having lost both regular season games to the Cowboys. The Giants would have to deal with a hostile crowd as Cowboys with the best record in the NFC had gained home field advantage throughout the playoffs. This meant the Cowboys had 2 weeks of rest to prepare for a team they played twice a year, while the lower seeded Wildcard Giants had to play against Tampa Bay in the Wildcard round of the playoffs. Making matters worse for the Giants, the Cowboys had #1 receiver Terrell Owens back after he had missed the last two games of the regular season due to an injury, and had #3 receiver Terry Glenn playing just his second game of the season after undergoing knee surgery. Dallas played ball control offense, a strategy the Giants are usually known for. The Cowboys won the battle for time of possession, having possession for far longer than the Giants. With a quick score, the Giants were able to overcome very long, time-consuming drives by the Cowboys in the win. Eli Manning had another good game, completing 66% of his passes with 12 out of 18 passes for yards and throwing 2 touchdowns and no interceptions. Both of his TD passes were caught by veteran receiver Amani Toomer.

The game began with the Giants receiving an opening kickoff. After three Brandon Jacobs runs netted 20 yards, Eli Manning hit Amani Toomer on a crossing route towards the left sideline. Toomer then maneuvered past cornerback Anthony Henry before outrunning safeties Ken Hamlin and Roy Williams down the sideline for a yard touchdown just into the game.

Both teams then exchanged punts with the Cowboys starting a drive at their own 4-yard line. The Cowboys then went on a ten play, five minute drive that went 96 yards for the game-tying touchdown. Marion Barber, making his first start of the season after leading the Cowboys in rushing touchdowns on the season (combined with Julius Jones's declining performance), was the key factor for the drive, rushing for 72 yards on the drive including a yard run. On the first play of the second quarter, Tony Romo threw a fade to Terrell Owens, who caught the ball and kept both feet in bounds for the touchdown. A Chris Canty sack of Eli Manning forced a punt on the Giants's next possession, and the Cowboys started their next drive on their own yard line. The Cowboys went on a play, yard drive where they converted 5 third downs. Barber capped off the drive with a 1-yard touchdown plunge to make it 14–7 Cowboys with to go in the first half.

With the Cowboys dominating the game at this point outside of the Giants's opening touchdown, the Giants needed at least a field goal in order to keep themselves in the game. Rookie receiver Steve Smith got the Giants going with two receptions for 33 yards, then Eli Manning found Kevin Boss on a corner route for 19 yards to put the Giants at the 4-yard line with 17 seconds left in the half. On the next play, Manning found Toomer on a crossing route, and he lunged into the end zone for the touchdown with 11 seconds left in the half. The score was tied at 14 at the half.

Though the Giants and Cowboys were tied at 14–14 heading into halftime, the second half was all about defense as both teams totaled 10 points in the second half. However early on, it looked to be more of the same from the Cowboys as they entered the red zone again on a 14 play drive taking up over 8 minutes of the clock. Finally, the Giants got a stop off a Cowboys miscue. On 3rd and 12 from the Giants's yard line, Tony Romo had an open Terrell Owens crossing over the middle of the field, but he threw behind him, resulting in Dallas settling for Nick Folk's yard field goal to make it 17– Giants kick returner Domenik Hixon returned the ensuing kickoff 45 yards, but in large part due to a sack by DeMarcus Ware, the Giants failed to get any points and punted. The Cowboys got the ball back when they made probably their worst play of the day. In the lead-up to the game, receiver Patrick Crayton declared that the Cowboys would be going to the Super Bowl. On a third down play, Romo was chased by the Giants pass rush and avoided them before finding a wide-open Crayton, but he dropped it. The play likely would have gone for a big gain had Crayton caught the pass, but instead, the Cowboys were forced to punt.

Veteran corner R.W. McQuarters returned the ensuing punt 25 yards, and this time, the Giants capitalized on their good field position. Manning went 3–4 to lead the Giants inside the yard line, and then Giants bruising running back Brandon Jacobs scored the winning touchdown, overpowering a goal line stand by the Cowboys defense. As hated rivals in a hostile stadium, Jacobs continued running with the ball in the end zone and hit the playclock loudly, but avoided the unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that the celebration would earn today.

It didn't look like the winning touchdown, as there was still over 13 minutes left in the 4th quarter and Giants only led by 4 points, but the 4th quarter turned into a clock killing scoreless battle of opposing defenses. Bending without breaking, yardage had been allowed without points for either side. While the Giants failed to move the ball on their ensuing possessions, the Cowboys began to struggle offensively. Now trailing when they had been controlling the game for the majority of the contest, the Cowboys began to abandon their running attack. More crucially, however, the Giants pass rush began to assert itself. During the season, the Cowboys had been one of the best teams in the league in controlling the Giants's league-leading pass rush, but in the fourth quarter, the Giants broke through with Reggie Torbor and Kawika Mitchell both contributing sacks, and the team constantly forcing Tony Romo to rush throws. Romo became so rattled he committed an intentional grounding penalty with four minutes left, forcing a punt.

As the game reached its closing minutes, the Cowboys had possession with a final chance to win. Tony Romo began to lead the Cowboys down the field for a potential game-winning drive with a minute and a half left in the game. They successfully got to scoring position, although only a touchdown could win it with a 4-point deficit. On a third down play, Romo was rushed out of the pocket by the Giants pass rush again, but flipped the ball to tight end Jason Witten for an yard gain to put the Cowboys at the yard line. After a false start by Cowboys tackle Mark Colombo, a completion for 4 yards, and an incomplete pass, the Cowboys had 3rd and 11 at the yard line with 21 seconds left with two chances to score a game-winning touchdown, when Patrick Crayton made another bad play. On third down, Romo threw incomplete for Crayton. While the pass appeared to be overthrown by Romo, replays showed that on the down, out, and up pattern that Crayton was supposed to run, he stopped on the "out" part of the route, then restarted for the "up" portion of the route, resulting in the overthrown pass. On fourth down, Romo threw over the middle for Terry Glenn, and his pass was intercepted by R.W. McQuarters with 9 seconds remaining. Manning kneeled on the next play, winning a huge unexpected upset of the heavily favored #1 seed Cowboys.

In large part due to their two touchdown-scoring drives, Dallas dominated the game statistically, outgaining the Giants – and controlling the ball for compared to the Giants's However, the Cowboys committed 11 penalties compared to just three by the Giants, and while Romo outgained Manning through the air, Manning's QB rating for the game was compared to Romo's

The Giants were headed to Green Bay to play the Green Bay Packers on January 20 for the NFC Championship and a spot in Super Bowl XLII. However, The Cowboys were considered the team widely expected to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl, and the NFC championship game was expected to be played in Dallas, not Green bay, as the Packers had earned the #2 seed. This was because the Packers had lost to the Cowboys during the regular season. With the big win over Dallas, the Giants had suddenly changed all expectations, and improved their overall record to 12–6. This set a matchup the following week against the also heavily favored Packers, who were 14–3 after a 42–20 victory over the Seattle Seahawks in the Divisional round, and additionally had soundly defeated the Giants in New York in week 2, 35–

[17]

NFC Championship Game: at Green Bay Packers[edit]

After their big win over the Dallas Cowboys, the Giants traveled to Lambeau Field to face the second-seeded Green Bay Packers on a freezing night. With a gametime temperature of -1 degree and a degree windchill, it was the third-coldest NFL game in terms of windchill, behind the Ice Bowl between the Cowboys and the Packers and the January Freezer Bowl between the Chargers and the Bengals (which holds the record with a degree windchill). While the Giants were steadily gaining more respect throughout the league after their upset of the Cowboys, most analysts and pundits predicted the Packers to win and represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.

The Packers won the toss and received the opening kickoff, but after two Brett Favre completions, the Packers failed to move the ball further and punted. The Giants offense opened the game with running back Brandon Jacobs plowing into cornerback Charles Woodson on a five-yard run. With the help of three receptions by receiver Plaxico Burress, the Giants entered the red zone when they survived a potential turnover. While being held by a lineman on a third-down play, Eli Manning threw the ball straight to lineman Cullen Jenkins, but he dropped the potential interception, and instead the Giants got on the board first with kicker Lawrence Tynes getting a yard field goal. The Giants kept the ball for most of the 1st quarter, leading 3–0 at the end of the quarter.

In the 2nd quarter, the Packers defense shut the Giants' passing game down after two more completions to Plaxico Burress, so the Giants settled for another Tynes field goal at left in the half. The Giants led 6–0, and appeared to be in good position for their next drive when Koren Robinson muffed the ensuing kickoff and fell on it at the Packers's yard line. However, on the first play of the Packers' next drive, Brett Favre pump-faked, then threw a yard TD pass to Donald Driver, who had beaten blown coverage by cornerback Corey Webster before outrunning safety Gibril Wilson down the right sideline, and the Packers led 7–6. The teams then exchanged punts before the Packers received great field position at the Giants's yard line. The Packers advanced into the red zone and faced a 3rd and 8 from the Giants yard line. Favre found backup running back Brandon Jackson in the flat with lineman Jason Spitz out in front to block, but somehow, middle linebacker Antonio Pierce grabbed hold of Jackson to prevent him from advancing before Dave Tollefson could help him make the tackle. Green Bay settled for kicker Mason Crosby making a yard field goal to give the Packers a 10–6 lead with left in the half. On the Giants's next drive, Manning found Burress deep for a yard pass on his 7th reception of the day, but an A.J. Hawk sack on fourth down prevented the Giants from scoring. The Packers led 10–6 at the half.

The Giants got the ball first in the 3rd quarter, and had a successful drive that ended with a Brandon Jacobs 1-yard TD run. The Giants led 13– This drive nearly ended with an interception with Al Harris intercepting another Eli Manning pass intended for Burress, but he committed pass interference to make the interception, so the play was nullified. In the next Packers drive, after a Sam Madison penalty, Brett Favre threw a yard TD pass to tight end Donald Lee. The Packers led 17– The Giants responded in their next drive by driving to the four-yard line after a yard reception by Amani Toomer (which was challenged by Green Bay and upheld). From the Packers's 4-yard line, Manning then handed off to Ahmad Bradshaw, who went off tackle right but got caught in a stalemate at the one-yard line. In a heads-up play, right tackle Kareem McKenzie grabbed Bradshaw and dragged him into the end zone with him, resulting in a touchdown. The Giants led 20–17 with left in the 3rd quarter.

For the remainder of regulation, the game would be defined by potentially crushing mistakes by the Giants that prevented them from entirely capitalizing on the Packers's failures to penetrate the Giants defense. On the next drive, Brett Favre avoided the Giants pass rush and threw an interception to R. W. McQuarters, but McQuarters never went down and was fumbled upon being tackled, with the loose ball bouncing straight to offensive lineman Mark Tauscher at the yard line. The Giants defense held, and with left in the game, Packers kicker Mason Crosby hit a yard field goal to tie the game at 20– On the Giants' next drive, after not converting for a 1st down, the Giants were at 4th and 5. The Giants failed to convert, however a Packers penalty gave the Giants a 1st down. the Giants advanced to the Packers's yard line when Eli Manning went for the touchdown to Plaxico Burress, when Al Harris finally made a play and broke up the pass. The Giants then went for a field goal, but with left in the game, Lawrence Tynes missed a yard field goal attempt. The Packers's next two drives went three-and-out before they punted to the Giants with left. Packers punter Jon Ryan's next punt went only 31 yards to the Packers's yard line, but R. W. McQuarters fumbled the punt return, with Domenik Hixon saving a turnover by recovering the ball at the yard line. On the next play, Ahmad Bradshaw broke through the Packers's defense for what appeared to be a yard touchdown run, but the play was nullified due to a holding penalty. Undaunted, Manning found Steve Smith for completions of 14 and 11 yards before the Giants killed time for Lawrence Tynes to attempt a game-winning yard field goal. On the last play of regulation, however, Giants long snapper Jay Alford had a low snap, and Tynes shanked the kick wide left on an attempt that was not even close to the uprights. The Giants and Packers went into overtime with the game tied at 20– The Packers won the coin toss and got the ball first.

For much of the game, cornerback Corey Webster had been playing with a massive chip on his shoulder. While the Giants coaches had tried to encourage him and assure him that he would get another opportunity, he remained angry over his poor play resulting in Brett Favre's yard touchdown to Donald Driver and wanted to make a big play to make up for it. He finally got an opportunity on the second play of overtime. The Packers called an out pattern play for Driver, where Donald Lee would shift to fullback and attempt to deceive the Giants defense into believing that he would be a lead blocker on a running play (they had previously called this play twice before in the game, with the play being successful both times). Favre dropped back, and in a bonehead play that helped to define his legacy as a "gunslinger," threw the ball straight towards Webster, who was in position against Driver. Webster took advantage of his long-awaited opportunity and intercepted the pass, and went five yards before Driver dragged him down, which gave the Giants the ball in Packer territory. The Giants failed to convert on 3rd down and decided to go for the field goal. Although he had missed his previous two attempts, Tynes, like Webster before him, also wanted another opportunity and sprinted straight onto the field for a yard attempt with left in OT. Before Tynes's attempt, no kicker had made a field goal of over 40 yards with the game time temperature below freezing. Tynes's attempt initially went wide of the right goalpost, but the wind hooked it left and the kick went just over the crossbar for the game-winning field goal, and the Giants became the NFC Champions.

The Giants beat the Packers, 23– The Giants victory was the first championship win over the Packers since The Packers have a 4–2 record over the Giants in NFL/NFC Championship series. The win also marked the Giants' 10th straight road win and their 4th straight NFC Championship victory.

For the Giants, Eli Manning went 21–40 for yards. Although he didn't throw a touchdown, he avoided an interception for the third straight playoff game. It was generally agreed by critics after the game that he outplayed Favre, making another instance where he outplayed a quarterback considered far superior to him in the lead-up to the contest. Brandon Jacobs added 67 yards on 21 carries with a touchdown, while Ahmad Bradshaw ran 16 times for 63 yards and a touchdown. Plaxico Burress caught 11 passes for yards. Along with his + yard receiving performance in against the Falcons while a member of the Steelers, it is considered by many to be his single greatest game as a receiver.

While the Giants defense didn't have a sack in this contest, they held the Packers to just 28 yards rushing. Former Giants running back Ryan Grant, who had run for yards against the Seahawks the previous week, ran for just 29 yards against his former team.

The game was Brett Favre's final game as a Green Bay Packer, with whom he played with for 16 seasons. He appeared to retire for good during the offseason, but instead announced just before the season started that he wanted to play again. Because the Packers spent the offseason after the retirement announcement preparing Aaron Rodgers for the starting job, Favre became expendable and was traded to the Jets.

During the game, Giants coach Tom Coughlin caught frostbite. His increasingly red face due to the freezing conditions and frostbite received considerable attention from TV cameras during the game.

The New York Giants were headed to Super Bowl XLII to face the AFC Champions New England Patriots who were undefeated at 18–0. on February 3,

[18]

Super Bowl XLII: vs. New England Patriots[edit]

Main article: Super Bowl XLII

Two weeks after their NFC Championship victory over the Packers, the Giants flew to the University of Phoenix Stadium for Super Bowl XLII against the undefeated AFC Champions, the New England Patriots, in a rematch of Week That game had ended with the Patriots winning a very close game after coming back, and would prove to be a sign of things to come, but with a reverse ending.

After calling tails to win the coin toss, the Giants started the game with the longest opening drive in Super Bowl history, a play, yard march that consumed 9 minutes, 59 seconds and featured four third-down conversions, the most ever on a Super Bowl opening drive. But New England halted the drive at their own yard line, where New York delivered the first punch with kicker Lawrence Tynes nailing a yard field goal for the only score of the period.

In the second quarter, the Patriots responded with RB Laurence Maroney getting a 1-yard TD run for the only score of the period. After a scoreless third quarter, the Giants regained the lead with QB Eli Manning completing a 5-yard TD pass to WR David Tyree. New England retook the lead with QB Tom Brady completing a 6-yard TD pass to WR Randy Moss. Afterwards, with only 2 minutes and 40 seconds left, Manning led his Giants from their own yard line all the way to the Patriots' yard line, featuring a 4th down conversion (a one-yard run by Brandon Jacobs on 4th and inches) and even Eli escaping a sure-fire sack & completing a yard pass to Tyree, where he would hook up with WR Plaxico Burress for the game-winning TD pass. The defense after that didn't even allow a single yard, as Brady was sacked once and threw 3 incomplete passes, turning the ball over on downs.

The Giants visiting the White Housein honor of their Super Bowl victory on April 30,

With the win, the Giants finished their championship season with an overall record of 14–6. They became the third team (after the Cowboys and Patriots) to win the Super Bowl after beginning the season 0–2 and were the first NFC Wild Card to win the Super Bowl. The victory also gave them their 11th-straight road win (an NFL record).

Eli Manning was named the game's MVP after completing 19 of 34 passes for yards, 2 touchdowns, and an interception; a majority of his offense came in the decisive fourth quarter, completing nine of 14 passes for yards and both touchdowns. The defense had a stellar performance, sacking Patriots QB Tom Brady five times.

Coach Tom Coughlin became the third oldest head coach to win the Super Bowl (61 years and days). Punter Jeff Feagles was the oldest player to play in a Super Bowl, let alone win one.

Eli and Peyton Manning became the first brother QBs to become back-to-back Super Bowl winners and Super Bowl MVPs.

Season facts[edit]

  • The New York Giants lost to the Dallas Cowboys (twice), Green Bay Packers, and New England Patriots in the regular season but defeated them all in the post-season. In fact, the Minnesota Vikings are the only team that the Giants played during the season that the Giants did not defeat at least once (The Vikings did not make the playoffs and defeated the Giants in their only meeting during the regular season)
  • Of the New York Giants 10 victories the combined record of all teams were 60– ().
  • Of the New York Giants 10 victories 7 games were against teams below that had a combined record of 35–77 ().
  • Of the New York Giants 10 victories 3 games were against teams above that had a combined record of 25–23 ().
  • Of the New York Giants 6 losses the combined record of all teams were 51–29 ().
  • Of the New York Giants 4 post-season victories the combined record of all opponents (including playoffs) were 54–13 ().
  • The New York Giants combined regular season opponents records were – ().
  • The New York Giants total regular and post-season opponents (TB 9–7, playoffs only: GB 1–0 & NE 2–0) records were – ().
  • Peyton and Eli Manning are the first brothers to be named MVP of the Super Bowl, at the same position, and in back-to-back years.
  • The New York Giants trailed in all four post-season games, coming back to win all four. The Giants trailed in the fourth quarter in 2 out of the 4 games.
  • The Giants NFC Championship victory was their first win over the Packers in the playoffs since The Packers have a 4–2 record over the Giants in NFL/NFC Championship series.
  • The New York Giants played the New England Patriots at the end of the pre-season, regular season and post-season (Super Bowl XLII) during the season. This marks the third time that the Giants played a team that they would later face in the Super Bowl. Their record is 1–2 against these opponents in the regular season and 3–0 in the Super Bowl.
  • Ended the season with an game road winning streak including playoffs. (the Week 8 game in London vs. the Dolphins and Super Bowl XLII in Arizona were both considered "away" games for the Giants. The Week 5 game vs. the Jets in Giants Stadium was considered a "home" game for the Giants.)
  • Prevented the Patriots from achieving what would have been the second undefeated season, and the first 19–0 season. (The first, and to date the only, was the Miami Dolphins, although they finished 17–0)
  • Had only one starting Pro Bowler (Osi Umenyiora), fewest among Super Bowl champs.
  • All of their post-season games were announced by Joe Buck and Troy Aikman, due to each game being the perceived "marquee matchup" for Fox's coverage slate, along with the network holding broadcast rights for Super Bowl XLII.
  • The only time the Giants and the Buccaneers met in the season was in the postseason.

Super Bowl XLII DVD[edit]

The official DVD of Super Bowl XLII was released on February 26, The DVD covered the entire New York Giants season, as well as special features including the NFL Network postgame commentary, the halftime show in its entirety, the Media Day highlights, the NFC Divisional Game and NFC Championship Game highlights, profiles on Mathias Kiwanuka and Tom Coughlin, and features on Eli Manning and Michael Strahan.

Stomp You Out[edit]

"Stomp You Out" was the unofficial team motto of the New York Giants - especially their defense, which led the NFL with 52 sacks that season. It was started and perpetuated by Michael Strahan, saying he wanted to stomp out all of his opponents. During their playoff run, a relatively unknown motto was catapulted to national exposure as the Giants kept winning. The phrase remains a rallying cry for Giants fans to this day, much to the chagrin of their opponents, especially the Dallas Cowboys and the New England Patriots. At Strahan's Hall of Fame induction speech, he said, "Not only did we win the game [Super Bowl XLII], but we stomped them out!" much to the delight of Giants fans and players present.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/_New_York_Giants_season

Super bowl roster 2007

Super Bowl XLI

edition of the Super Bowl

" Super Bowl" redirects here. For the Super Bowl that was played at the completion of the season, see Super Bowl XLII.

Super Bowl XLI logo.svg
1234Total
IND6106729
CHI1403017
DateFebruary 4, &#;()
StadiumDolphin Stadium, Miami Gardens, Florida
MVPPeyton Manning, quarterback
FavoriteColts by 7[1][2]
RefereeTony Corrente[3]
Attendance74,[4]
Colts:Bill Polian (general manager), Tony Dungy (head coach), Marvin Harrison, Peyton Manning
Bears:Brian Urlacher
National anthemBilly Joel
Coin tossDan Marino and Norma Hunt (widow of Lamar Hunt)[5]
Halftime showPrince and the Florida A&M University Marching
NetworkCBS
AnnouncersJim Nantz, Phil Simms, Steve Tasker, Solomon Wilcots, Sam Ryan and Lesley Visser
Nielsen ratings (national)[6]
(est. million viewers)[7]
(Chicago)[8]
(Indianapolis)
Market share64 (national)
77 (Chicago)
83 (Indianapolis)
Cost of second commercialUS$ million[9]
NetworkWestwood One
AnnouncersMarv Albert, Boomer Esiason, John Dockery and Bonnie Bernstein

Super Bowl XLI was an American football game played between the American Football Conference (AFC) champion Indianapolis Colts and the National Football Conference (NFC) champion Chicago Bears to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion for the season. The Colts defeated the Bears by the score of 29– The game was played on February 4, , at Dolphin Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida.

This game featured two teams ending long Super Bowl appearance droughts. The Colts, who finished with a 12–4 regular season record, were making their first Super Bowl appearance since winning Super Bowl V in the season during the team's tenure in Baltimore; they had moved to Indianapolis in Meanwhile, the Bears, who posted an NFC-best 13–3 regular season record, were making their first appearance since winning Super Bowl XX in the season. In addition, the Bears' Lovie Smith and the Colts' Tony Dungy both became the first African-American head coaches to coach in the Super Bowl, with Dungy the first to win. It was also only the second championship game or series in any of the four North American major professional sports leagues to feature two African-American head coaches or managers, the other being the NBA Finals.

In the first Super Bowl played in rainy conditions, the Colts overcame a 14–6 first-quarter deficit to outscore the Bears 23–3 in the last three quarters. Chicago posted the then-earliest lead in Super Bowl history when returner Devin Hester ran back the opening kickoff 92 yards for a touchdown after 14 seconds had elapsed (a record later broken in Super Bowl XLVIII when the Seattle Seahawks scored a safety 12 seconds into the game). The Colts forced five turnovers, including cornerback Kelvin Hayden's yard interception return for a touchdown. Indianapolis kicker Adam Vinatieri also scored three field goals. Colts quarterback Peyton Manning was named the game's Most Valuable Player (MVP), completing 25 of 38 passes for &#;yards and a touchdown, with one interception for a passer rating of

CBS's broadcast of the game was watched by an estimated average of million viewers, making it at the time the fifth most watched program in U.S. television history.[citation needed] The halftime show, headlined by the musician Prince, peaked at million viewers, and was widely acclaimed by music critics.[10]

As of , this was the last time a 3-seed made or won the Super Bowl.

Background[edit]

Host selection process[edit]

Dolphin Stadium won the bid to host Super Bowl XLI on September 17, , after a campaign against Phoenix, Tampa, New York City, and Washington, D.C. With this game, the Miami metropolitan area tied New Orleans, Louisiana as the city to host the most Super Bowls (9).[11]

This was the fourth Super Bowl at Dolphin Stadium, which has also been known as "Joe Robbie Stadium" and "Pro Player Stadium". The venue previously hosted Super Bowls XXIII (broadcast on NBC), XXIX (on ABC), and XXXIII (on FOX). Super Bowls II, III, V, X, and XIII were also in Miami, but held at the Miami Orange Bowl. This was the first Super Bowl played at the stadium since the city of Miami Gardens where the stadium is located was incorporated on May 13,

In February , the NFL and the South Florida Super Bowl XLI Host Committee unveiled the slogan "one game, one dream" for the game, referring to the entire South Florida region working together to present the event.[12] The Super Bowl XLI logo was also unveiled, featuring the colors orange (to represent the sun) and blue (for the ocean).[12] The "I" in the Roman numeral "XLI" was drawn to resemble a pylon placed at each corner of an end zone because "the goal is to get to the game."[12] The logo had the same shade of orange as the logo of the host city's home team, the Miami Dolphins. The "XL" part was similar to that of Super Bowl XL's logo.

Teams[edit]

Indianapolis Colts[edit]

Main article: Indianapolis Colts season

The Colts' first trip to the Super Bowl in 36 years set a record for longest time between appearances by a team (since broken by the Kansas City Chiefs). Their return was the culmination of a nine-year-long building process. In , they drafted quarterback Peyton Manning to lead the team. Over the next four seasons, Manning, along with other stars such as receiver Marvin Harrison and running back Edgerrin James, turned the Colts into one of the best offensive teams in the NFL, but the team struggled to find consistency on defense and always ended up with either a losing season or elimination from the playoffs in the first round. After the season, Indianapolis fired head coach Jim Mora and replaced him with Tony Dungy. Dungy had developed one of the best defenses in the NFL while coaching the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and it was hoped he could solve the Colts' defensive problems as well.

Over the next four seasons, the Colts won 48 of 64 games, but still could not find much success in the postseason. In , they were blown out 41–0 in the Wild Card playoffs by the New York Jets. In , they won their first two playoff games behind impressive offensive performances, and reached the AFC Championship Game. There, they lost to the New England Patriots 24–14, with Manning throwing four interceptions. In , the Colts had one of the most spectacular offensive seasons in NFL history, scoring points and gaining 6, yards, while Manning set NFL records for most touchdown passes and highest passer rating. But again the New England Patriots' defense (and snowy conditions) proved too formidable, as they lost 20–3 in the Divisional playoffs.

In , the Colts' defense improved, making the team the clear favorites in the NFL. They won the first 13 games of the season and finished with a 14–2 record, while ranking second in the NFL in both points scored and fewest points allowed. But once again they lost in Divisional playoffs, this time to the #6 seeded Pittsburgh Steelers, 21– The Colts' playoff runs ended to with a loss to the eventual Super Bowl champions in three consecutive years preceding this season. After another disappointing loss, Manning had developed a reputation of being unable to make it to a championship, a reputation that followed him from college after he was unable to win an NCAA title with the Tennessee Volunteers (who won a title the year after he graduated). The Colts lost some key players after the season, including James, who departed the Colts for the Arizona Cardinals, and kicker Mike Vanderjagt, the NFL's all-time leader in field goal percentage, who left for the Dallas Cowboys. However, they did gain one key addition: year old special teams returner Terrence Wilkins. Though he had been out of the NFL for three years, Wilkins finished the season with 52 kickoff returns for 1, yards (9th in the NFL).

Still, the Colts remained one of the AFC's top teams in the season. Manning made the Pro Bowl for the 7th time in his career, completing of passes for 4, yards and an NFL-best 31 touchdowns, with an additional 4 rushing touchdowns and with only 9 interceptions and 15 sacks. His favorite target was Harrison, who caught 95 passes for 1, yards and 12 touchdowns. Receiver Reggie Wayne was also a major deep threat with 86 receptions for 1, yards and 9 touchdowns. Tight ends Ben Utecht and Dallas Clark were also reliable targets, each recording over 30 receptions for over yards. On the ground, rookie running back Joseph Addai led the team with 1, yards and a yards-per-carry average despite not starting any games in the regular season. He also caught 40 receptions for yards and scored 8 touchdowns. Running back Dominic Rhodes was also a major contributor, rushing for yards and catching 36 passes for yards. The offensive line was led by Pro Bowlers Jeff Saturday and Tarik Glenn. On special teams, the Colts signed kicker Adam Vinatieri to replace Vanderjagt. While Vinatieri's career field goal percentage was lower, the Colts considered him to be an improvement because of his reputation for making "clutch" kicks, a reputation aided by his game winning field goals in Super Bowl XXXVI and Super Bowl XXXVIII.

Indianapolis' defense ranked second in the NFL in fewest passing yards allowed. Dwight Freeney ( sacks and 4 forced fumbles) and Robert Mathis ( sacks, 4 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries) were widely considered to be among the best pass-rushing defensive ends in the NFL. Behind them, linebacker Cato June led the team in tackles () and interceptions (3). Cornerback Nick Harper added 3 interceptions and 75 tackles. The Colts' run defense, however, was a major problem, giving up 2, yards on the ground, an average of per game and last in the NFL. Another major issue for the Colts was their coverage teams, as they ranked 30th out of 32 teams in average kickoff return yardage allowed and 31st in average punt return yardage allowed. One key issue for the team was the loss of safeties Mike Doss and Bob Sanders, who had missed most of the seasons with injuries.

Indianapolis started out the season winning their first nine games, but ended up losing four of their next seven and finished with a 12–4 record, giving them the #3 playoff seed. Therefore, they had to play in a wild card playoff game. In the Wild Card playoffs, they defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 23–8, then defeated the Baltimore Ravens 15–6 in the Divisional playoffs, and advanced to Super Bowl XLI with a 38–34 win over the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game after rallying from a 21–3 deficit.

Chicago Bears[edit]

Main article: Chicago Bears season

Chicago finished the season with an NFC best 13–3 record and advanced to the second Super Bowl in franchise history. They defeated the Seattle Seahawks 27–24 in overtime in the divisional round of the playoffs, and the New Orleans Saints 39–14 in the NFC Championship game to advance to Super Bowl XLI. The team excelled on defense, ranking third in fewest points allowed () and second in fewest points allowed per drive.[13] They also ranked second in scoring ( points), although only tenth in points per offensive drive[13] thanks to a league leading 65 points scored on defensive or special teams plays.

The Bears offense was led by quarterback Rex Grossman, the team's first round draft pick in Over the previous three seasons, Grossman had played in just 8 regular season games due to injuries, but he recovered to start in all 16 games in By the end of the season, he finished with 3, yards and 23 touchdowns, the most by a Bears quarterback since Grossman had difficulty avoiding turnovers, however, and threw 20 interceptions and lost five fumbles during the year. In the last seven games of the season, he turned the ball over 18 times. Many fans and sports writers expected head coach Lovie Smith to bench him at some point, but Smith insisted that Grossman would be the starter throughout the entire season.

Receivers Muhsin Muhammad (60 receptions, &#;yards, 5 touchdowns) and Bernard Berrian (51 receptions, yards, 7 touchdowns) provided the main deep threat on the team, along with tight end Desmond Clark, who caught 45 passes for &#;yards and 6 touchdowns. Chicago's running game was led by running backs Thomas Jones and Cedric Benson. Jones rushed for 1,&#;yards and caught 36 passes, while Benson rushed for &#;yards and scored 6 touchdowns.

Chicago's defense allowed the 5th least total yardage, allowed less than &#;yards per game on the ground,[14] and allowed the fewest yards per drive of any NFL team.[13] The line was anchored by Adewale Ogunleye, who had sacks, and Pro Bowler Tommie Harris, who recorded 5, along with rookie Mark Anderson, who led the team with 12 sacks. Behind them, two of the three Bears starting linebackers, Lance Briggs, and Brian Urlacher, were selected to the Pro Bowl. In the secondary, cornerbacks Ricky Manning and Charles Tillman each recorded five interceptions. The defense was also able to make up for the offense's poor performance earlier in the season, as explained in the win against the Cardinals in Week 6.

The loss of Harris to injury after the 12th game of the season coincided with a decline in defensive performance. Before his loss, the Bears allowed only two opponents to score more than 20 points (23 points to the Arizona Cardinals in week six and 31 to the Miami Dolphins in week 9).[15] After his injury, Chicago opponents scored more than 20 points in six of the seven remaining games, including two of three playoff games. Only the New Orleans Saints in the NFC Championship game were held below 21 points.[16]

The Bears' special teams sent three players to the Pro Bowl, including special teams ace Brendon Ayanbadejo, kicker Robbie Gould (who led all NFL kickers with points), and rookie return man Devin Hester, who gained punt return yards with a &#;yards per return average, the second highest in the NFL. He also set a league record with 6 touchdowns on special teams.

Regular season statistical comparison[edit]

The chart below provides a comparison of regular season statistics in key categories (overall rank amongst 32 teams in parentheses).[17]

StatisticIndianapolis ColtsChicago Bears
Points scored per game (2nd, tied) (2nd, tied)
Points allowed per game (23rd) (3rd)
Rushing yards gained per game (18th) (15th)
Rushing yards allowed per game (32nd) (6th)
Passing yards gained per game (2nd) (14th)
Passing yards allowed per game (2nd) (11th)
Yards gained per play (2nd) (21st)
Yards allowed per play (29th) (2nd)
Time of possession per game (23rd) (11th)
Third-down conversion percentage56 (1st)37 (22nd)
Third-down conversion percentage allowed47 (32nd)31 (2nd)
Fourth-down conversion percentage0 (32nd)69 (4th, tied)
Fourth-down conversion percentage allowed79 (30th, tied)62 (27th)
Total turnover differential+7 (7th)+8 (4th)

Playoffs[edit]

Main article: –07 NFL playoffs

Although the Colts' rushing defense looked extremely weak during the season, it ended up being a key factor on their road to the Super Bowl. First, Indianapolis defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 23–8, holding Chiefs running back Larry Johnson (who rushed for 1, yards during the season) to just 32 yards on 13 carries. Then, they defeated the Baltimore Ravens 15–6, winning on a playoff record-tying five field goals by Vinatieri and holding running back Jamal Lewis (who rushed for 1, yards during the season) to just 53 yards.

Then the Colts faced their arch-rivalNew England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game. New England jumped to an early 21–3 lead, but Indianapolis stormed back in the second half, outscoring the Patriots 32–13 with an additional field goal late in the first half. With left in the game, the Colts had the ball on their own yard line trailing 34– On the first four plays of the drive, Manning completed three passes, moving the ball 69 yards to the Patriots yard line in just 24 seconds. Three plays later, Addai scored a 3-yard touchdown run to put them in the lead, 38–34 with only 60 seconds left in regulation. The Patriots responded with a drive to the Colts yard line, but defensive back Marlin Jackson ended the drive with an interception to give Indianapolis the win. This happened to be the biggest comeback in AFC-NFC Conference Championship history.

Meanwhile, the Bears started out their post-season with a 27–24 win over the Seattle Seahawks with Robbie Gould's yard field goal in overtime. One week later, they defeated the New Orleans Saints 39–14 in the NFC Championship Game. Chicago dominated most of the game, jumping to a 16–0 early lead. Two touchdown passes from Saints quarterback Drew Brees, cut the score to 16–14, but the Bears responded with 23 unanswered points to propel them to their first Super Bowl since Thomas Jones finished the game with a franchise postseason record rushing yards and two touchdowns.

It was the first time since the postseason that the home team won both of the conference championship games. The Colts were the first dome team to win the Super Bowl in an outdoor game (the St. Louis Rams were the first dome team to win a Super Bowl, XXXIV inside the Georgia Dome in Atlanta). The Indianapolis Colts were the first division champion to win a Super Bowl with four postseason wins and the second division champion (Carolina Panthers) to win a conference title with three postseason wins.

For the Bears, this marked the first time that a Chicago sports team not owned by Jerry Reinsdorf had reached the champion game/series in their league since the Blackhawks lost in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Super Bowl pre-game practices and notes[edit]

Dolphin Stadium prepares for Super Bowl XLI

The Indianapolis Colts held pre-game practices for Super Bowl XLI at the Miami Dolphins Training Facility on the campus of Nova Southeastern University in Davie, Florida. The Colts' "Team and Family" hotel was the Marriott Harbor Beach.[18] At the Indianapolis pre-race ceremonies on May 27, , eventual Super Bowl XLI MVPPeyton Manning stated to ABC Sports commentator Brent Musburger the day before the game that two-time Indianapolis winner Hélio Castroneves gave a pep talk to the Colts team.

The Chicago Bears held pre-game practices for Super Bowl XLI at the Miami Hurricanes Football Facility, on the campus of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida.

Chicago defensive tackle Tank Johnson was required to request a judge's order to leave the state of Illinois due to an arrest for unlicensed ownership of six firearms and two assault rifles. On January 23, , the judge granted him permission to travel out of state to play in the Super Bowl.[19]

Chicago and Indianapolis are the two closest cities, geographically, to ever play in a Super Bowl; at miles (&#;km) apart (connected by a route that is mostly Interstate 65), they are slightly closer than New York and Baltimore, whose teams played each other at III ( miles) and XXXV ( miles). This prompted Colts coach Tony Dungy to joke to Jim Nantz, at the end of the AFC Championship game, that the two teams should split the difference and play the game in Fort Wayne.[20]

This was the first Super Bowl since Super Bowl V that all players on both teams wore black shoes. As the designated home team in the annual rotation between AFC and NFC teams, the Bears elected to wear their home navy uniforms with white pants, while the Colts wore their road white uniforms with white pants.

Broadcasting[edit]

United States[edit]

The game was televised in the United States by CBS in high-definition with play-by-play announcerJim Nantz and color commentatorPhil Simms. This was the first Super Bowl announced by Nantz.[21] Additionally, the game had Steve Tasker (Bears sideline) and Solomon Wilcots (Colts sideline) reporting on the sidelines and Lesley Visser (Bears sideline) and Sam Ryan (Colts sideline) in the stands.

This was the first Super Bowl aired on CBS since the Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlakeincident three years earlier, in Super Bowl XXXVIII; and the first since the Viacom/CBS split at the end of Extensive pre-game coverage, hosted by The NFL Today team of James Brown, Shannon Sharpe, Boomer Esiason and Dan Marino, whose name graces the address of the game site ( Dan Marino Boulevard), began at noon (US EST) with NFL Films' "Road to the Super Bowl" year in review (narrated by Tom Selleck). This was followed by "The Phil Simms All-Iron Team", and a four-and-a-half-hour Super Bowl Today pre-game show followed by game coverage at PM.[22] Other contributors to the pre-game show included Katie Couric, anchor of the CBS Evening News, Armen Keteyian, CBS News Chief Investigative Correspondent, Randy Cross, who reported from Iraq where U.S. military forces played a touch football game known as "The Baghdad Bowl" and Dick Enberg, who participated in his 12th Super Bowl telecast as a host, play-by-play announcer, or contributor. Westwood One provided radio coverage of the event, with Marv Albert and Boomer Esiason as announcers.[23]

"The Baghdad Bowl" flag football game played in Iraq.

The American Forces Network (AFN) provided coverage of the Super Bowl for U.S. forces stationed overseas and to all U.S. Navy ships at sea.[24]

The opening title sequence of CBS television coverage featured the composition Lux Aeterna, by artist Clint Mansell, in the background.

Nielsen Media Research reported 93 million viewers for Super Bowl XLI, making it at the time the fifth most watched program in U.S. television history (trailing only the M*A*S*H finale and Super Bowls XLIII, XXX, and XLII).[citation needed]

Commercials[edit]

Advertising rates were reported as being slightly higher than in the year before, with CBS confirming a price of $ million for some second spots, compared with $ million during Super Bowl XL. However, CNN reported that after discounts, the average price is likely closer to $ to $2 million. Familiar advertisers in recent years such as Anheuser-Busch, CareerBuilder, General Motors and Coca-Cola bought multiple advertising spots, and other popular advertisers like Go Daddy and Emerald Nuts had commercials this year.[9]

The only major hype related to commercials in the months leading up to Super Bowl XLI involved various campaigns to allow consumers to be involved in the creation of Super Bowl ads, inspired by consumer-generated content sites like YouTube. Frito-Lay announced a campaign in September to allow the public to submit ads for their Doritos brand and vote on the best one, which aired during the Super Bowl. Doritos actually aired two of the ads due to a close voting margin; the winning ad (featuring a chance meeting with a man and a woman that feature the qualities of Doritos) aired in the first quarter, while a second (with a checkout lady overly enamored with the product) aired in the second quarter. The five finalists each received $10, in this contest. General Motors announced a similar contest, open only to college students, for their Chevrolet brand; however, the ad would be produced professionally based on ideas suggested by the public. The winning ad featured men gathering around an HHR model with women in it and stripping off their clothes and giving it a car wash. The NFL itself advertised a similar contest to generate suggestions for a commercial promoting the league, with the winning concept featuring fans' disappointment that their teams' season was over.[25]

The annual USA Today Super Bowl Ad Meter survey chose a Budweiser ad featuring crabs worshiping an ice chest with that particular beer inside as the top ad of Super Bowl XLI, followed by another Budweiser commercial featuring a stray dog with mud spots climbing onto the brewery's trademark Clydesdale-drawn wagon in a parade. In all, Anheuser-Busch took seven of the top ten spots in the annual survey, sweeping the top three spots. A YouTube user survey chose the Doritos "Snack Hard" ad (produced for the incredible price of $12, the cost of three bags of the snack product)[26] as their top ad, that ad finished fourth in the USA Today survey. ADBOWL results were slightly different with only 6 of Anheuser-Busch's ads finishing in the top ten. The highest ranked being the Bud Light "Rock, Paper, Scissors" spot. Also in the top ten were Blockbuster Video's "Mouse", Doritos' "Car Wreck", GM's "Robot" and Taco Bell's "Lion's Talk 'Carne'."

One ad that drew criticism from the gay community was for the Snickers candy bar featuring two men accidentally "kissing" each other after sharing the product in question, then proceeded to rip chest hairs as a manly act as homophobic.[27] The ad proved to be controversial, and the ad was cancelled the next day by Masterfoods USA (Mars, Incorporated's snack food division), and three other versions were deleted from the snickers.com web site. The ad was ninth in the USA Today ad survey, and according to a Masterfoods publicist, not intended to harm anyone.

A different ad for General Motors featured a laid offassembly linerobot contemplating suicide, which drew criticism from the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. The group asked for an apology from GM, and that the ad be taken off the air and the company's website.[28] The suicide scene was replaced with a scene of the robot watching a car being crushed at a junkyard when it was shown again during the 79th Academy Awards on February

International[edit]

The Super Bowl was broadcast live in Canada on CBS (which is available in Canada) as well as Global TV and NTV which both took the main CBS commentary, and on the French cable channel RDS. In the United Kingdom the Super Bowl was broadcast on ITV1, Sky Sports 1 & Sky Sports HD1 with Sky Sports taking the main CBS commentary and ITV taking the NFL supplied international commentary feed of Spero Dedes and Sterling Sharpe.

Super Bowl XLI was broadcast in over countries. Amongst the television networks who broadcast Super Bowl XLI were:

Entertainment[edit]

Pre-game ceremonies[edit]

Before the game, Cirque du Soleil, Romero Britto and Little Louie Vega performed as the pre-game act,[31] and Billy Joel sang the National Anthem, accompanying himself on piano. He also performed at Super Bowl XXIII, which was played at the same venue. Joel became the second person to sing the National Anthem twice for a Super Bowl; Aaron Neville sang the national anthem before Super Bowl XXIV, in New Orleans, and Super Bowl XL (along with Aretha Franklin), in Detroit. This was also the last time until Luke Bryan sang at Super Bowl LI that a male artist had sung the national anthem at a Super Bowl.[32]

2 days before the game, 4 tornadoes devastated Central Florida, causing over million dollars in damage, and causing numerous of injuries and 21 deaths. A moment of silence was held before kickoff, in honor of the victims of the severe weather.

Marlee Matlin and Jason Hay-Southwell performed the National Anthem in American Sign Language.[33]

Besides participating in the CBS telecast of the pre-game show, Dan Marino also participated in the coin toss along with Norma Hunt, who was the widow of Lamar Hunt, the former owner of the Kansas City Chiefs and the man who gave the Super Bowl its name.

Halftime show[edit]

Main article: Super Bowl XLI halftime show

American singer and musician Princeheadlined the halftime show

American singer and musician Prince performed in the halftime show.[34] The setlist for Prince's performance was a short rendition of "We Will Rock You" by Queen; Prince's hit songs "Let's Go Crazy" and "Baby I'm a Star"; covers of Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Proud Mary", Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower", and Foo Fighters' "Best of You"; and finally his signature song "Purple Rain" in the downpour. The minute performance featured Prince accompanied by two dancers he called "The Twinz" (Maya and Nandy McClean)[citation needed] and the Florida A&M University marching band, the Marching [35] Prince had rehearsed with the drum line for a week before the performance. The performance was on a large, central stage which was shaped like Prince's logo, and was outlined with lights. He played before 74, fans at Dolphin Stadium, who had been given flashlights to point at the stage during the performance of "Purple Rain". The event was carried "to the biggest audience of his life" with million television viewers.[10] Overall, the show was energetic and well received by the rain-soaked audience surrounding the stage.[36] Music critics were extremely enthusiastic about his performance, one calling it "arguably the best halftime show in Super Bowl history",[10] and others saying it was one of the best ever.[37][38][39]

Following the game, controversy emerged about a silhouetted camera shot of Prince, projected against a large sheet by a bright light on the other side of him. The controversy centered around his guitar, which detractors claimed seemed phallic, and critics stating that it "looked embarrassingly rude, crude and unfortunately placed". Though the guitar has been considered by some an extension of a male player's sexuality (especially highlighted by such artists as Jimi Hendrix, Eddie Van Halen, and even Prince himself), supporters of Prince say that the show did not, in fact, become any more sexually charged than usual, noting that "a guitar at waist level does look like an enormous phallus".[40] In , Entertainment Tonight listed the silhouetted camera shot, naming it "Prince's Demon Phallus", as one of the top seven Super Bowl halftime moments.[41] In , shortly after Prince's death, the halftime show's producer Don Mischer said that having a silhouetted camera shot of Prince was his idea, but denied it was meant to be a phallic statement.[42]

Post-game ceremonies[edit]

Former Colts and Dolphins head coach Don Shula presented the Vince Lombardi Trophy to the Colts after the game, and Peyton Manning was named MVP.[43]

Game summary[edit]

First quarter[edit]

The Bears won the coin toss and elected to receive. For the first time in Super Bowl history, the game was played in the rain, which was continuous throughout the game.

The rain did not hinder Bears' return man Devin Hester, who ran back the opening kickoff 92&#;yards for a touchdown to give Chicago the then earliest lead in Super Bowl history, after only 14 seconds.[44] The Colts avoided kicking to Hester for the rest of the game, allowing him only one punt return, and choosing to squib kick whenever Hester was in the deep kickoff return position.[45]

On Indianapolis' first drive of the game, defensive back Chris Harris intercepted a deep, third-down pass from quarterback Peyton Manning and returned it 6 yards to the Bears' yard line. However, Chicago could not gain a first down on their ensuing possession and they were forced to punt. After several short runs and passes, Manning beat the Bears' defense with a yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Reggie Wayne, cutting the Bears' lead to 7–6. The touchdown occurred because of a mental error on the Bears' secondary. Cornerback Charles Tillman passed Reggie Wayne onto safety Danieal Manning. However, Manning chose to follow tight end Ben Utecht over the middle, leaving Wayne all alone. The score remained the same, at 7–6, after punter/holder Hunter Smith fumbled the snap on the point-after-touchdown (PAT) attempt. On the ensuing kickoff, Chicago tight end Gabe Reid fumbled Adam Vinatieri's bouncing kickoff while being tackled by Robert Mathis; Colts linebacker Tyjuan Hagler recovered the loose ball. However, on the next play, Indianapolis gave the ball back when running back Joseph Addai fumbled the hand-off and Bears defensive end Mark Anderson recovered it.

On the first play after the turnover, Thomas Jones's yard run moved the ball to the Colts' 5-yard line. Three plays later, Rex Grossman threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to receiver Muhsin Muhammad, giving the Bears a 14–6 lead. After forcing an Indianapolis punt, Chicago lost another turnover when Cedric Benson's fumble was recovered by Colts defensive end Dwight Freeney on the Bears' yard line. Indianapolis subsequently advanced to the yard line, but decided to punt rather than risk a yard field goal attempt.

Second quarter[edit]

Following a Chicago punt, Indianapolis drove 47&#;yards and scored with Vinatieri's yard field goal to make the score 14–9. Chicago was forced to punt again on their next drive, and return man Terrence Wilkins returned the ball 12&#;yards to his own yard line. Manning started out the drive with a yard completion to Marvin Harrison. His next pass went to tight end Dallas Clark for 17&#;yards. Two more completions moved the ball to the Bears' yard line, and then Dominic Rhodes took the ball to the end zone with three consecutive carries, the last one a 1-yard touchdown run to give his team a 16–14 lead with left in the second quarter.

After another Chicago punt, the Colts advanced to the Bears' yard line before Tillman ended the drive by forcing and recovering a fumble from tight end Bryan Fletcher. But on the next play, Grossman fumbled a snap, and Colts defensive lineman Raheem Brock recovered the ball. Manning then led the Colts to Chicago's yard line. With two seconds left, Vinatieri attempted a yard field goal, but his kick sailed wide left, and the score remained 16–14 at halftime.

Third quarter[edit]

Wilkins returned the second half kickoff 26&#;yards to the Colts's yard line. On the ensuing possession, Addai rushed five times for 25&#;yards and caught four passes for 19&#;yards as the Colts drove 56&#;yards in 13 plays and scored with a yard field goal from Vinatieri, increasing their lead to 19– On the Bears' next drive, Jones started out with a yard run, and then Muhammad caught a 9-yard pass, bringing up second down and one on the Colts' yard line. But on the next play, Grossman was sacked for an yard loss by Anthony McFarland. Then, on third down, he fumbled the snap. Grossman recovered the fumble himself, but the Bears were forced to punt, and Wilkins returned the ball 12&#;yards to the Colts' yard line. Rhodes then gained 52&#;yards on four carries, with a face-mask penalty adding another Chicago managed to halt the drive at their own 2-yard line, but Vinatieri kicked his third field goal to make the score 22–

Chicago tight end John Gilmore picked up Vinatieri's bouncing kickoff and returned it 9-yards to his own yard line, with an unnecessary roughness penalty on Mathis adding another 15&#;yards and giving the Bears a first down on the Colts' yard line. Chicago could only gain 14 yards on their ensuing possession, but it was enough for Robbie Gould to make a yard field goal, cutting the score to 22–

Fourth quarter[edit]

After an Indianapolis 7-play drive ended in a punt, Chicago started on their own yard line with left in the game. But four plays later, Colts defensive back Kelvin Hayden intercepted a pass intended for Muhammad and returned it 56&#;yards for a touchdown.

From that point on, the Colts took over the game. Four plays after the ensuing kickoff, Colts defensive back Bob Sanders intercepted Grossman's pass and returned it 38 yards to the Bears yard line. Chicago's defense eventually forced a punt, but Smith's yard kick pinned the Bears back at their own 8-yard line. The Bears drove to their own 47, but on a fourth down conversion attempt, tight end Desmond Clark dropped a potential first down reception after being leveled by defensive back Matt Giordano. The Colts subsequently called eight consecutive Dominic Rhodes runs before turning the ball over on downs themselves, leaving only remaining in regulation. Five plays later, the game was over.

Box score[edit]

Scoring summary
Quarter Time DriveTeam Scoring information Score
PlaysYards TOPIND CHI
1 CHI Devin Hester yard kickoff return for a touchdown, Robbie Gould kick good 0 7
1 9 80 IND Reggie Wayne yard touchdown reception from Peyton Manning, Adam Vinatieri kick no good 6 7
1 4 57 CHI Muhsin Muhammad 4-yard touchdown reception from Rex Grossman, Gould kick good 6 14
2 8 47 IND yard field goal by Vinatieri 9 14
2 7 58 IND Dominic Rhodes 1-yard touchdown run, Vinatieri kick good 16 14
3 13 56 IND yard field goal by Vinatieri 19 14
3 6 62 IND yard field goal by Vinatieri 22 14
3 6 14 CHI yard field goal by Gould 22 17
4 IND Interception returned 56 yards for touchdown by Kelvin Hayden, Vinatieri kick good 29 17
"TOP" = time of possession. For other American football terms, see Glossary of American football.29 17

Statistical overview[edit]

This was the third Super Bowl to have two players rush for more than yards as Dominic Rhodes had for the Colts and Thomas Jones had for the Bears. Tony Dungy is the third man to win the Super Bowl as a head coach as well as a player, following Tom Flores and Mike Ditka.

For the Colts, Rhodes rushed for &#;yards and a touchdown, while also catching an 8-yard reception. Addai rushed for 77&#;yards and caught 10 passes for 66&#;yards. Wilkins returned four kickoffs for 89&#;yards and 3 punts for 42&#;yards in what turned out to be his final NFL game. Adam Vinatieri became the first kicker ever to play in five Super Bowls and the first to win four Super Bowl rings. Vinatieri's three field goals and two extra points gave him 49 points for the entire post-season, an NFL record. The Colts' win was the first major professional championship for Indiana since the Indiana Pacers' ABA title in the –73 season.

Hester's touchdown for the Bears on the opening kickoff was the first one in Super Bowl history, and the ninth kick return for a touchdown in a Super Bowl; only three of the nine teams who did this went on to win the game (the Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl XXXI, the Baltimore Ravens in Super Bowls XXXV and XLVII, and the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII). Hester's return also kept a streak alive for there being a kickoff return for a touchdown in each Super Bowl played at Dolphin Stadium. Hester's and Wayne's touchdowns in the first quarter marked the first time in Super Bowl history the first two touchdowns were scored by players from the same college (University of Miami). Jones was the Bears' top rusher with yards, while also catching four passes for 18 yards. Desmond Clark was the Bears' top receiver with six receptions for 64 yards. Grossman completed 20 of 28 passes for yards and a touchdown, with two interceptions, leaving him with a QB rating of for the game.[48]Muhsin Muhammad became the third player ever to score a touchdown in the Super Bowl for two teams, joining Ricky Proehl and Jerry Rice.

Final statistics[edit]

Sources: NFL.com Super Bowl XLI, Super Bowl XLI Play Finder Ind, Super Bowl XLI Play Finder Chi

Statistical comparison[edit]

Indianapolis ColtsChicago Bears
First downs2411
First downs rushing123
First downs passing118
First downs penalty10
Third down efficiency8/183/10
Fourth down efficiency0/10/1
Net yards rushing
Rushing attempts4219
Yards per rush
Passing – Completions-attempts25/3820/28
Times sacked-total yards1–81–11
Interceptions thrown12
Net yards passing
Total net yards
Punt returns-total yards3–421–3
Kickoff returns-total yards4–896–
Interceptions-total return yards2–941–6
Punts-average yardage4–5–
Fumbles-lost2–24–3
Penalties-yards6–404–35
Time of possession
Turnovers35

Individual statistics[edit]

1Completions/attempts 2Carries 3Long gain 4Receptions 5Times targeted

Starting lineups[edit]

Source:[49]

Hall of Fame‡

Officials[edit]

Controversies prohibiting fan parties and presentations[edit]

Prohibiting tailgating[edit]

The NFL upset many fans by banning the traditional practice of tailgating at Super Bowl XLI. Originally, spokesmen for Dolphin Stadium announced that tailgating would be permitted as usual. However, the NFL quickly contradicted this statement, announcing an NFL owner-imposed ban on all tailgating and prohibiting non-ticketed fans within a two-block-radius of the stadium.[50]

Prohibiting church display[edit]

The NFL upset a large number of fans by threatening churches with lawsuits if they had Super Bowl parties. National Football League assistant counsel Rachel L. Margolies sent a letter to the Fall CreekBaptist Church in Indianapolis, ordering the church to cancel its party and remove the trademarked Super Bowl name from its website.[51] She said that the church could not use the words "Super Bowl" as it violates trademark law, could not charge admission as that violates copyright law, could not use its projection screen (only one television could be used and it could not be over 55&#;inches), and could not "promote a message" in connection with the game. Regarding the last point, the Fall Creek Baptist church planned to also show an extra video to highlight the Christian testimonies of Colts coach Tony Dungy and Chicago Bears coach Lovie Smith. "While this may be a noble message", Rachel L. Margolies wrote, "we are consistent in refusing the use of our game broadcasts in connection with events that promote a message, no matter the content."[52]Sports bars nationwide were allowed to show the game, as were businesses that televised sports as part of their everyday operations because they didn't charge admission and they left the message the NFL intended intact.

The Indianapolis Star picked up the story, and soon pastors across the U.S. were working to cancel their parties. Immediately the NFL received a backlash of bad publicity, with indignant football fans in constant sarcasm (akin to rules imposed about on-field behavior i.e. taunting opposition teams) referring to the NFL as the "No Fun League."[53] For example, the enforcement of this policy earned the NFL a "Worst Person in the World" silver on the edition of February 2, of Countdown with Keith Olbermann.[54]

After a long series of bad press, the NFL issued a written statement clarifying their policy, saying that they did not object to churches hosting Super Bowl parties so long as they did not charge admission and showed the game on "a television of the type commonly used at home". This statement did not attempt to forbid coordination of any other message with the game, something typically done by churches, nor did it attempt to forbid the use of the term "Super Bowl."[55][56]

References[edit]

  1. ^DiNitto, Marcus (January 25, ). "Super Bowl Betting History – Underdogs on Recent Roll". Sporting News. Retrieved February 4,
  2. ^"Super Bowl History". Vegas Insider. Retrieved February 4,
  3. ^NFL.com. "Corrente to referee first Super Bowl". Archived from the original on May 9, Retrieved January 17,
  4. ^ ab"Super Bowl Summaries"(PDF). NFL Postseason Media Guide. NFL Enterprises, LLC. January 2, Retrieved May 23,
  5. ^ESPN. "Goodell wants players held accountable". Retrieved January 17,
  6. ^"Blockbuster: Best Super Bowl Ratings In 7 Years". publications.mediapost.com. Archived from the original on July 24, Retrieved February 6,
  7. ^Colts-Bears draws No. 3 audience of all timeArchived February 8, , at the Wayback Machine SuperBowl.com, February 5,
  8. ^Feder, Robert (February 6, ). "Super Bowl ratings fall short of record". Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on February 7, Retrieved February 6,
  9. ^ abLa Monica, Paul R. (January 3, ). "Super prices for Super Bowl ads". CNN. Retrieved January 17,
  10. ^ abcDave Hoekstra (February 5, ). "Purple rain turned super". Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on April 12, Retrieved February 5,
  11. ^"Miami awarded Super Bowl". NFL.com. September 17, Archived from the original on September 13, Retrieved December 10,
  12. ^ abcTalalay, Sarah (February 17, ). "Committee Unveils Logo, Theme". Sun-Sentinel. p.&#;7C.
  13. ^ abc
  14. ^NFL.com rushing defense statistics[permanent dead link]
  15. ^"NFL Players". www.nfl.com.
  16. ^"Chicago Bears game results". nfl.com. Archived from the original on May 22,
  17. ^"NFL Team Stats - NFL.com". www.nfl.com.
  18. ^"Super Bowl helped Fort Lauderdale hotels more than ". South Florida Sun Sentinel. March 1, Retrieved May 29,
  19. ^Reuters Staff (January 23, ). "Judge allows Bears' Johnson to play in Super Bowl". Reuters. Retrieved February 28,
  20. ^Rushin, Steve (February 5, ). "Storming the Fort (Wayne)". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved January 10,
  21. ^"CBS Sports announces NFL TV schedule". CBS Sports. April 6, Archived from the original on January 3, Retrieved December 12,
  22. ^"CBS Sports NFL schedule". CBS Sports. April 9, Archived from the original on April 1, Retrieved December 14,
  23. ^"Westwood One press release". February 1, Retrieved February 5,
  24. ^CBS announcer's comment during the national anthem
  25. ^"Some Super Bowl ads to be work of 'ordinary people'". January 14, Archived from the original on September 5, Retrieved January 17,
  26. ^"Doritos eats up Cary startup's ad". February 5, Archived from the original on February 12, Retrieved February 15,
  27. ^"Snickers ad pulled after gays complain". February 6, Archived from the original on February 8, Retrieved February 15,
  28. ^AFSP.org (February 6, ). "AFSP Issues Statement to General Motors Regarding Super Bowl Ad". Archived from the original on February 20, Retrieved February 9,
  29. ^ ab"Worldwide media coverage of Super Bowl XLI". Archived from the original on February 3, Retrieved February 4,
  30. ^For the last decade SBS6 used to broadcast the game in The Netherlands. However, this year only NASN will be showing the Super Bowl.
  31. ^"Cirque du Soleil to perform in Super Bowl XLI pregame show". SuperBowl.com. January 9, Archived from the original on February 6, Retrieved January 11,
  32. ^"Luke Bryan to sing national anthem at Super Bowl LI".
  33. ^"Marlee Matlin and Jason Hay-Southwell to Sign National Anthem During Billy Joel Performance at Super Bowl XLI on CBS". Elitestv.com. February 2, Archived from the original on April 3, Retrieved February 2,
  34. ^"Prince to perform at Super Bowl halftime". SuperBowl.com. December 10, Archived from the original on December 14, Retrieved December 10,
  35. ^"Marching to play with Prince". Tallahassee.com. January 24, Archived from the original on September 27, Retrieved January 25,
  36. ^Sanneh, Kelefa (February 5, ). "A Noncontroversial Prince, Just the Way the N.F.L. Likes Him". New York Times. Retrieved February 5,
  37. ^Brad Kava (February 4, ). "Mini Review: Prince At Super Bowl". Mercury News.
  38. ^"No Malfunction as Prince Rocks Halftime". New York Times. Associated Press. February 5, Retrieved February 5,
  39. ^Wilson, David (January 31, ). "Prince's Miami Super Bowl show set halftime's gold standard". The Miami Herald. Retrieved February 1,
  40. ^Jake Coyle (February 7, ). "Some complain of phallic imagery in Prince halftime show". Houston Chronicle. Associated Press. Retrieved February 8,
  41. ^"The Top 7 Super Bowl Halftime Moments". Entertainment Tonight. January 30, Retrieved February 3,
  42. ^Lisa, de Moraes (April 21, ). "Prince Super Bowl Halftime Show: Producer Don Mischer Remembers". Deadline. Retrieved February 3,
  43. ^"Marino, Shula to be honored at Super Bowl XLI". SuperBowl.com. December 14, Archived from the original on December 16, Retrieved December 14,
  44. ^"Super Bowl XLI play-by-play". USA Today. USATODAY.com. January 11, Retrieved August 25,
  45. ^Jun 30, Bryan Dietzler/FanSided via Bear Goggles On Fansided; ET, at p (January 29, ). "A Chicago Bears Superstar: The Career of Devin Hester". FOX Sports. Retrieved April 25,
  46. ^This was the first Super Bowl to be played in rain.
  47. ^"Super Bowl Game-Time Temperatures". Pro Football Hall of Fame. Retrieved March 10,
  48. ^"Notebook". Rotowire.com. February 4, Retrieved February 8,
Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Bowl_XLI
Giants vs Patriots Super Bowl XLII

QUARTERBACKS

12 TOM BRADY

HT:

WT:

YR: 8

COL: Michigan

SKINNY: Has started consecutive games, including playoffs. &#; Needs 20 TD passes to pass Drew Bledsoe () and move into second place on the franchise’s all-time list behind leader Steve Grogan (). &#; Is in games when final margin is less than a TD, including in the playoffs and in Super Bowls. &#; Has orchestrated 24 game-winning drives to break a tie or take a lead in the fourth quarter or OT.

DID YOU KNOW? That Brady’s () career record in regular-season and playoff games is the best of any NFL QB with at least 40 starts in the Super Bowl era.

16 MATT CASSEL

HT:

WT:

YR: 3

COL: USC

SKINNY: Has been the understudy to some of the modern era’s best QBs, including Heisman Trophy winners Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart in college. &#; Appeared in six regular-season games and three playoff games in and went a combined 5-for-8 with 32 passing yards. &#; Hasn’t been needed as a starter yet.

DID YOU KNOW? He played in the Little League World Series for Northridge, CA, and has two brothers who play minor-league baseball.

7 MATT GUTIERREZ

HT:

WT:

YR: R

COL: Idaho State

SKINNY: Played three preseason games with Patriots, connecting 13 times for yards and one TD. &#; Final year at Idaho State, he boasted a passer rating, throwing for 2, yards with a completion percentage of

DID YOU KNOW? Gutierrez never lost a game at DeLasalle High School (Concord, Calif.), where he had a passer rating as a senior.

OFFENSIVE LINE

72 MATT LIGHT

POS: T

HT:

WT:

YR: 7

COL: Purdue

SKINNY: Named to his first Pro Bowl in &#; Led an offensive line that helped New England rush for 1, yards last season, which was second most in 18 years. &#; Started all 16 regular season games and all three in playoffs last season at left tackle. &#; Had started 66 consecutive games, including playoffs, from before injuring ankle on Dec. 22,

DID YOU KNOW? He was starting left tackle for Purdue when Drew Brees was Boilermakers QB.

61 STEPHEN NEAL

POS: G

HT:

WT:

YR: 6

COL: Cal State-Bakersfield

SKINNY: Has started 43 games over last three seasons for an offensive line that has allowed fewer than 30 sacks each year. &#; Became a regular starter in &#; A champion wrestler who won the Dan Hodge Award (the Heisman Trophy of college wrestling) in &#; He did not play college football.

DID YOU KNOW? He wrestled against eventual Heisman Trophy winner Ricky Williams in high school in San Diego, as well as eventual WEE champ Brock Lesnar in college.

65 WESLEY BRITT

POS: T

HT:

WT:

YR: 2

COL: Alabama

SKINNY: Doesn’t fit the typical mold of a Patriots lineup due to enormous size but has surprising quickness. &#; Played in 10 games last year. &#; Started one gameIn that game, played right tackle vs. Cincinnati and helped open holes for rushing yards, which was team’s highest total in 13 seasons.

DID YOU KNOW? That he receives occasional advice and guidance from Hall of Famer and fellow Crimson Tide alum John Hannah.

71 RUSS HOCHSTEIN

POS: G/C

HT:

WT:

YR: 7

COL: Nebraska

SKINNY: Veteran lineman has started seven regular season games at center and three at guard in four-plus seasons. &#; Started final seven regular-season games and both playoff games in &#; He was a three-year starter at Nebraska before being drafted by Tampa Bay in fifth round in

DID YOU KNOW? He was the starting left guard for the Patriots in Super Bowl XXXVIII.

67 DAN KOPPEN

POS: C

HT:

WT:

YR: 5

COL: Boston College

SKINNY: Has developed into one of the game’s top centers after being selected in the fifth round of the draft. &#; Started all 16 regular-season games and three playoff showdowns in &#; Moved into starting lineup second game of rookie season in

DID YOU KNOW? He has been featured in two national television commercials with Tom Brady.

70 LOGAN MANKINS

POS: G

HT:

WT:

YR: 3

COL: Fresno State

SKINNY: The first-round pick has begun pro career by starting all 32 regular-season games with Patriots. &#; Last New England guard to start every game as a rookie was Hall of Famer John Hannah in &#; Protected QB David Carr at Fresno State.

DID YOU KNOW? He grew up on a 10, acre cattle ranch in California and has won awards for steer roping.

77 NICK KACZUR

POS: T

HT:

WT:

YR: 3 COL: Toledo

SKINNY: The th overall selection in the NFL draft has turned into a reliable lineman, starting of regular-season games for the Patriots, as well as four playoff games. &#; He made his first career start at left tackle vs. San Diego on Oct. 2, &#; He’s from the same Ontario hometown as Wayne Gretzky.

DID YOU KNOW?: The Brantford, Ontario native was selected by the Toronto Argonauts in the first round (ninth overall) of CFL Draft.

68 RYAN O’CALLAGHAN

POS: T

HT:

WT:

YR: 2

COL: California

SKINNY: Has proved to be far more valuable than his sixth-round selection in the draft originally may have indicated. &#; The massive lineman played in 11 games last year as a rookie, including six starts at right tackle. &#; Blocked for J.J. Arrington, Marshawn Lynch and Justin Forsett at Cal.

DID YOU KNOW? He and his family own a vineyard in Sonoma County, Calif.

74 BILLY YATES

POS: G/C

HT:

WT:

YR: 4

COL: Texas A&M

SKINNY: He was signed from the practice squad last Oct. 21 and appeared in four games in , including three starts at right tackle. &#; Played four regular season games in , as well as one playoff game. &#; Originally a member of the Dolphins and played three games for Miami in

DID YOU KNOW? His cousin, Taje Allen, played cornerback for the St. Louis Rams and Kansas City Chiefs.

TIGHT ENDS

84 BENJAMIN WATSON

HT:

WT:

YR: 4

COL: Georgia

SKINNY: Saw plenty of double-teams last year and hopes new receiver corps means end to that. &#; His 49 receptions in were the most by a Patriots tight end since Ben Coates caught 67 passes in &#; Started 13 games last year and caught three TD passes. &#; This could be his breakout year.

DID YOU KNOW? That he visited U.S. military bases in Iraq and Afghanistan earlier this year on a USO tour.

88 KYLE BRADY

HT:

WT:

YR: 13

COL: Penn State

SKINNY: A veteran of a dozen NFL seasons with the Jets () and Jaguars (), he has played in games, including starts. &#; Has caught passes for 3, yards and 23 touchdowns. &#; Enters season second behind Chiefs’ Tony Gonzalez for most receptions by an active tight end. &#; Caught a career-high 64 passes in

DID YOU KNOW? He served as TV analyst for NFL Europa broadcasts in

82 MARCELLUS RIVERS

HT:

WT:

YR: 6

COL: Oklahoma State

SKINNY: Signed as a free agent in August after playing 75 games with Giants () and Texans (’05). &#; Spent time in Raiders and Saints organizations last year but was never on active roster. &#; Caught a career-high 24 passes for yards with Houston in &#; Has 51 career receptions for yards and four TDs.

DID YOU KNOW? Split playing time with two other tight ends at Oklahoma State and was never a full-time starter.

86 DAVID THOMAS

HT:

WT:

YR: 2

COL: Texas

SKINNY: Third-round pick in expected to open season on PUP list with foot injury. &#; He played 15 games as a rookie and caught 11 passes for yards and one touchdown. &#; Led the Patriots with five receptions and 83 yards vs. Jacksonville on Christmas Eve, including first career touchdown.

DID YOU KNOW? He caught 10 passes in Rose Bowl to help Texas Longhorns win BCS championship.

RUNNING BACKS

39 LAURENCE MARONEY

HT:

WT:

YR: 2

COL: Minnesota

SKINNY: Takes over as Patriots’ top running back following retirement of Corey Dillon. &#; Rushed for yards and six TDs on carries as a rookie. &#; Was primary kick returner and finished second in NFL with yard average. &#; Was honored with 12th Player Award. &#; Underwent off-season shoulder surgery.

DID YOU KNOW? He was part of the Missouri state champion 4&#; relay team in high school in St. Louis.

33 KEVIN FAULK

HT:

WT:

YR: 9

COL: LSU

SKINNY: Needs only 72 yards to move past Mosi Tatupu (2,), Leonard Russell (2,) and Craig James (2,) and into 10th place on the Patriots’ all-time rushing list. &#; He is the franchise’s all-time leader in receptions by a running back. &#; He is Patriots’ all-time kickoff return leader with returns for 3, yards and two touchdowns.

DID YOU KNOW? That he earned a degree in kinesiology in at LSU in only 3 1/2 years.

44 HEATH EVANS

HT:

WT:

YR: 7

COL: Auburn

SKINNY: Will be the team’s primary fullback. &#; In his third year with Patriots after playing with Seahawks () and Dolphins (). &#; Rushed for yards on 27 carries last season, while making seven catches for 34 yards. &#; Scored his first career touchdown on Oct. 8, with a 1-yard catch from Tom Brady against Miami.

DID YOU KNOW? He is in the planning stages of opening five Dunkin Donuts stores in Alabama.

34 SAMMY MORRIS

HT:

WT:

YR: 8

COL: Texas Tech

SKINNY: Signed by Patriots as free agent on March 3. &#; Has played seven seasons in the AFC East with Buffalo () and Miami () &#; Rushed for a career-high yards vs. Patriots on Dec. 10 in Miami. &#; Caught a career-high six passes vs. New England on Dec. 29, &#; Has rushed for 1, yards on yards during his NFL career.

DID YOU KNOW? Plans to attend Dallas Theological Seminary after his playing days to pursue a career in counseling?

WIDE RECEIVERS

81 RANDY MOSS

HT:

WT:

YR: 10

COL: Marshall

SKINNY: Missed almost all of training camp after suffering a left hamstring strain on Aug. 1. &#; Acquired from Oakland for a fourth-round draft pick on April &#; Is one of seven players in NFL history to record more than receiving touchdowns and one of only 27 to have amassed more than 10, receiving yards. &#; He is fifth all-time with 10, receiving yards.

DID YOU KNOW? Twice named West Virginia’s High School Basketball Player of the Year at DuPont High in Rand, W.Va.

83 WES WELKER

HT:

WT:

YR: 4

COL: Texas Tech

SKINNY: Acquired from Dolphins on March 5 for a second-round choice in the draft. &#; Tied Dolphins franchise record with career punt returns. &#; Recorded a career-high nine receptions at New England on Oct. 8, &#; Caught 67 passes last year for yards and a TD.

DID YOU KNOW? Filled in for injured kicker Olindo Mare against Patriots on Oct. 10, , and successfully kicked a field goal and an extra point at Gillette Stadium.

18 DONTE STALLWORTH

HT:

WT:

YR: 6

COL: Tennessee

SKINNY: Signed as a free agent on March 13 following five seasons with New Orleans () and Philadelphia (’06). &#; Has caught career passes for 3, yards and 28 TDs. &#; Averaged yards per reception last year, which was second best in NFL. &#; Has 13 career games with at least receiving yards.

DID YOU KNOW? He owns Asian-themed restaurant “O” with former Celtics forward Antoine Walker in Miami’s South Beach?

15 KELLEY WASHINGTON

HT:

WT:

YR: 5

COL: Tennessee

SKINNY: Signed as free agent on March 13 after playing sparingly with Bengals last season. &#; Played four seasons in Cincinnati and caught a career-high 31 passes for yards and three TDs in &#; Played in five games in and caught nine passes for yards and a TD. &#; Was a year-old college freshman after spending four seasons as an infielder in the Florida Marlins’ minor-league system.

DID YOU KNOW? Was a former roommate of Sox pitcher Josh Beckett when the pair played minor-league baseball together?

10 JABAR GAFFNEY

HT:

WT:

YR: 6

COL: Florida

SKINNY: Signed by the Patriots on Oct. 9, after being released by Eagles just before the start of the season. &#; Caught 11 passes for yards and a TD in 11 regular-season games but was Patriots’ most reliable receiver in playoffs and became the first player in NFL history to record back-to-back postseason games with at least eight catches and yards. &#; Overall, caught 21 passes for yards and two TDs in three playoff games for New England.

DID YOU KNOW? His father, Derrick, played in games over eight seasons for the Jets (, ’87).

CORNERBACKS

22 ASANTE SAMUEL

HT:

WT:

YR: 5

COL: Central Florida

SKINNY: Ended his holdout/boycott on Aug. 27 by agreeing to a one-year, $ million contract. &#; Tied for the NFL lead with 10 interceptions. &#; Led league with 24 passes successfully defensed in &#; Picked off three passes vs. Chicago on Nov. 26, , becoming first Patriot to do so since Roland James in &#; He has returned five interceptions for TDs, including three in postseason play.

DID YOU KNOW? That his name means “Thank You” in Swahili.

27 ELLIS HOBBS

HT:

WT:

YR: 3

COL: Iowa State

SKINNY: Has started 17 games during his first two seasons in the NFL and has accumulated 88 tackles, five interceptions, three fumble recoveries and eight special teams tackles. &#; Recorded his first career touchdown with a yard kickoff return against Houston on Dec. 17, &#; Tied Asante Samuel for team lead with three interceptions in

DID YOU KNOW? That he was an Art and Visual Communications major at Iowa State and dreamed of being a Disney animator.

21 RANDALL GAY

HT:

WT:

YR: 4

COL: LSU

SKINNY: Has established himself as a reliable NFL defensive back after being signed as a free agent on April 29, &#; Started all three playoff games at left cornerback as a rookie in ’ &#; Was Patriots’ leading tackler in Super Bowl XXXIX with 11 solo tackles. &#; Has been plagued by injuries last two seasons but was healthy throughout training camp.

DID YOU KNOW? That he played on back-to-back championship teams with LSU in and the Patriots in ’

31 BRANDON MERIWEATHER

HT:

WT:

YR: R

COL: Miami

SKINNY: Patriots’ top pick in draft (24th overall) after outstanding collegiate career. &#; Holds Hurricanes career record for DBs with tackles. &#; Became first DB to lead Miami in tackles in (). &#; Has seen time at cornerback as well as his usual safety position this preseason.

DID YOU KNOW? He served as team captain during his senior season with Hurricanes.

28 TORY JAMES

HT:

WT:

YR: 12

COL: LSU

SKINNY: Signed as free agent on April 24 after 11 seasons with Denver (), Oakland () and Cincinnati (). &#; Ranks fourth among active NFL players with 39 career interceptions. &#; Has intercepted at least four passes in each of the last six seasons and seven of the last eight. &#; Was selected to Pro Bowl following season after intercepting career-high eight passes. &#; Started every game for the Bengals over last four seasons.

DID YOU KNOW? That his wife, Angela, is a dentist.

SAFETY

*37 RODNEY HARRISON

HT:

WT:

YR: 14

COL: Western Illinois

SKINNY: Has missed 19 regular-season games and five playoff games over past two seasons due to knee injuries. &#; When healthy, is still considered one of the most fierce hitters in the NFL. &#; Is the NFL’s all-time leader in sacks by DBs with in 13 seasons. &#; Is the only player ever to record at least 25 sacks and 30 interceptions in a career.

DID YOU KNOW? He has six interceptions in his last six playoff games.

26 EUGENE WILSON

HT:

WT:

YR: 5

COL: Illinois

SKINNY: Has started 49 of his first 51 games over his first four seasons, making tackles with nine interceptions, three forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries. &#; Landed on the injured reserve list last December with hamstring and groin injuries. &#; His nine interceptions from led the team over that span.

DID YOU KNOW? He had two INTs vs. Pittsburgh in the AFC title game.

36 JAMES SANDERS

HT:

WT:

YR: 3

COL: Fresno State

SKINNY: Started five regular-season and all three playoff games last season. &#; Made career-high 45 tackles during the season and 17 in the playoffs. &#; Was part of a secondary last year that allowed only 10 TD passes, which was tops in the NFL and the fewest in team history. &#; Has made one interception in each of his first two seasons.

DID YOU KNOW? The entire starting defensive backfield during his junior season at Fresno State (also Richard Marshall, Marcus McCauley and Tyrone Culver) played in the NFL.

23 WILLIE ANDREWS

HT:

WT:

YR: 2

COL: Baylor

SKINNY: Tied for the team lead with 15 special teams tackles as a rookie. &#; It was the first time a rookie led the team in that category since Tebucky Jones in &#; Set Baylor record for kick returns and kick return yardage but has yet to return one for Patriots. &#; Saw action at cornerback in playoff win at San Diego.

DID YOU KNOW? His college coach was former Patriots lineman Guy Morriss ().

24 MEL MITCHELL

HT:

WT:

YR: 6

COL: Western Kentucky

SKINNY: Outstanding special teams player. &#; Signed as free agent April 4, , but missed all of last season with arm injury suffered during training camp. &#; Has recorded 64 special teams tackles in 44 career games. &#; Led the Saints with career-high 29 special teams tackles in

DID YOU KNOW? He scored a TD on Oct. 3, when he recovered a blocked punt in the end zone against Arizona.

32 RASHAD BAKER

HT:

WT:

YR: 4

COL: Tennessee

SKINNY: Claimed off waivers from Minnesota in &#; Played in 28 games over two seasons with Buffalo seeing much of his time in reserve safety and special team roles. &#; In five games in with New England, totaled two tackles after recording 41 over his first two years with the Bills.

DID YOU KNOW? Baker was a part of a shuttle hurdle relay team which fell seconds short of the national high school record.

LINEBACKERS

50 MIKE VRABEL

HT:

WT:

YR: 11

COL: Ohio State

SKINNY: Has tackles, sacks, 10 interceptions, 11 forced fumbles and six fumble recoveries in 10 NFL seasons. &#; Finished third on the team last year with tackles. &#; Had 20 tackles in the playoffs. &#; On Dec. 26, , became first player in NFL history to record two touchdowns and a sack in the same game since sacks became an official statistic in

DID YOU KNOW? Has eight career receptions in regular-season and playoff action, all going for touchdowns.

59 ROSEVELT COLVIN

HT:

WT:

YR: 9

COL: Purdue

SKINNY: Started 15 of 16 regular-season games last year and led Patriots with sacks and 26 QB hits. &#; Led the team in sacks in with seven. &#; Had a sack in eight consecutive regular-season games from Dec. 23, until Oct. 7, &#; Has two career interceptions, both in

DID YOU KNOW? He and his wife, Tiffany, own two UPS stores in Indianapolis.

54 TEDY BRUSCHI

HT:

WT:

YR: 12

COL: Arizona

SKINNY: Has averaged tackles over the last four seasons. &#; Led Patriots with tackles in &#; Led New England with 24 tackles in playoffs. &#; Has 12 career interceptions in regular-season play, including four recorded for TDs.

DID YOU KNOW? Patriots are in regular-season games in which Bruschi has recorded at least one sack.

96 ADALIUS THOMAS

HT:

WT:

YR: 8

COL: Southern Mississippi

SKINNY: Patriots most high-profile, free-agent signing. &#; Has made tackles, sacks, six interceptions, 15 forced fumbles and six fumble recoveries in seven seasons with Baltimore. &#; His 11 sacks last season were fourth most among linebackers. &#; Became first Raven to record three defensive TDs in

DID YOU KNOW? His 28 sacks over the past three seasons are the most by any NFL linebacker.

55 JUNIOR SEAU

HT:

WT:

YR: 18

COL: USC

SKINNY: Returns for second season with Patriots after was cut short on Nov. 26 by a broken arm. &#; The year-old has played career games, which is third highest total ever by a LB. &#; Was named to s All-Decade Team by Pro Football Hall of Fame. &#; Has recorded or-more tackles in a game 63 times. &#; Recorded 70 tackles last season.

DID YOU KNOW? He was voted to 12 consecutive Pro Bowls from

53 LARRY IZZO

HT:

WT:

YR: 12

COL: Rice

SKINNY: Special teams captaion has led Pats with special teams tackles over the past six seasons, &#; Has made three Pro Bowls as AFC’s special teams representative, &#; Has led his team or tied for the team lead in special teams tackles in seven of the last eight seasons.

DID YOU KNOW? He has missed only one game since the start of the season.

52 ERIC ALEXANDER

HT:

WT:

YR: 3

COL: LSU

SKINNY: Made his first career start in the AFC championship game and led team with 11 tackles. Also had a sack, knocked down a pass and forced a fumble in the loss at Indianapolis. &#; A valuable contributor on special teams. &#; Led or tied for team lead in special teams tackles four times last season.

DID YOU KNOW? Has been released by the Patriots three times since originally signing as a rookie free agent in

58 PIERRE WOODS

HT:

WT:

YR: 2

COL: Michigan

SKINNY: Played in eight games as a rookie after being signed as an undrafted free agent. &#; Tied for the team lead in special teams tackles in four games. &#; Played in all three playoff games and registered two solo tackles.

DID YOU KNOW? He played on the same high school team as the Dolphins’ Ted Ginn Jr. and the Bills’ Donte Whitner in Glennville, Ohio.

51 DAVID HERRON

HT:

WT:

YR: R

COL: Michigan State

SKINNY: Claimed off waivers. &#; A hard-nosed player who excels in a defense. &#; Grew more instinctive later in his college career, making 95 tackles in his season.

DID YOU KNOW? Herron was a blocking fullback for Maurice Clarrett at Warren G. Harding High School in Warren, Ohio.

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN

94 TY WARREN

HT:

WT:

YR: 5

COL: Texas A&M

SKINNY: Was an absolute monster last season and registered a career-high tackles with sacks. &#; Was named AFC Defensive Player of the Month for December after recording 43 tackles and four sacks. &#; Led or tied for the team lead in quarterback hits five times last season. &#; Had 19 tackles in three playoff games.

DID YOU KNOW? He has increased his tackles total in each of his four NFL seasons?

75 VINCE WILFORK

HT:

WT:

YR: 4

COL: Miami

SKINNY: Statistics don’t do justice to the job he’s done clogging up the middle on running plays. &#; Despite missing the final three regular-season games, still finished with 81 tackles last season. &#; Had seven tackles in AFC Championship game at Indianapolis.

DID YOU KNOW? He owns the Florida state high school record in the shot put at 68 feet.

97 JARVIS GREEN

HT:

WT:

YR: 6

COL: LSU

SKINNY: Played in every game last season and finished tied for second on the team with a career-high sacks. &#; Named AFC Defensive Player of the Week after recording three sacks, four solo tackles, three quarterback hits, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery on Oct. 1, &#; Recorded a career-high 10 tackles vs. Jets on Sept. 17,

DID YOU KNOW? He is opening a sports bar and grill in his hometown of Donaldsonville, La.

99 MIKE WRIGHT

HT:

WT:

YR: 3

COL: Cincinnati

SKINNY: Has blossomed into a key contributor on the defensive line after being signed as an undrafted free agent on April 29, &#; Played in every game last year at defensive tackle. &#; Made a career-high 12 tackles in final regular-season game at Tennessee on New Year’s Eve.

DID YOU KNOW? He received no offers to play Division 1 football coming out of high school.

90 LeKEVIN SMITH

HT:

WT:

YR: 2

COL: Nebraska

SKINNY: Sixth-round draft choice (th overall) in appeared in three games during rookie season. &#; Missed only one game during college career. &#; Made 36 tackles for losses at Nebraska, which was second highest total ever for a Cornhusker defensive lineman. &#; Earned a construction management degree at Nebraska.

DID YOU KNOW? Was the Georgia state high school discus champion at Stratford Academy in Macon.

95 KAREEM BROWN

HT:

WT:

YR: R

COL: Miami

SKINNY: Got off to a rough start with his new employers and was suspended at opening of camp. &#; Fourth-round selection (th overall) after recording 11 sacks for Hurricanes in &#; Total surpassed best mark of former Miami stars Warren Sapp ( in ) and Russell Maryland ( in ).

DID YOU KNOW? He lined up behind Santonio Thomas during sophomore season at Miami.

SPECIAL TEAMS

3 STEPHEN GOSTOWSKI

HT:

WT:

YR: 2

COL: Memphis

SKINNY: Helped ease the anxiety of Adam Vinatieri’s departure by converting of field goal opportunities as a rookie. &#; Was a perfect 8-for-8 on field goals in the playoffs, including game-winning yarder with remaining against San Diego. &#; Kicked the longest field goal in Patriots playoff history with a yarder against Chargers on Jan. His yard field goal against Chicago on Nov. 26 was the longest in Gillette Stadium history.

DID YOU KNOW? He missed only one of 44 extra-point opportunities in

6 CHRIS HANSON

HT:

WT:

YR: 7

COL: Marshall

SKINNY: Signed by the Patriots after being cut by New Orleans on August &#; Signed with the Saints after being cut in May by Jacksonville, where he played the previous six seasons. &#; Averages yards per punt with yard net average for career. &#; Pro Bowl selection in , averaged yards per punt with yard average. &#; Made NFL debut in with Green Bay.

DID YOU KNOW? Hanson played at Marshall for two seasons with current Patriots teammate Randy Moss.

66 LONIE PAXTON

HT:

WT:

YR: 8

COL: Sacramento State

SKINNY: Reliable long snapper since &#; Has snapped on 10 game-winning field goals, including Adam Vinatieri’s unforgettable yarder to end Super Bowl XXXVI. &#; Snapped on every punt, extra point and field goal attempt from and Missed final three games in due to injury.

DID YOU KNOW?: He is an extreme sports enthusiast and has a BMX course in the backyard of his California home.

Sours: https://www.bostonherald.com//09/06/new-england-patriots-roster/

Similar news:

Chicago Bears

Offensive StartersQBRex Grossman2747 for , 1, yards, 4 td, 7 int, & 14 rushes for 27 yards and 0 tdRBCedric Benson25211 rushes for yards, 4 td, & 17 catches for yards and 0 tdFBJason McKie275116 rushes for 17 yards, 1 td, & 9 catches for 33 yards and 0 tdWRBernard Berrian2731571 catches for yards, 5 tdWRMuhsin Muhammad34111640 catches for yards, 3 tdTEDesmond Clark3081644 catches for yards, 4 tdLTJohn Tait32815LGRuben Brown35128COlin Kreutz309161 fumble recoveredRGRoberto Garza286161 fumble recoveredRTFred Miller341115Defensive StartersLDEAdewale Ogunleye30616 sacks, 0 interceptions, 3 fumbles recoveredLDTAnthony Adams2748 sacks, 0 interceptions, 1 fumble recoveredRDTTommie Harris*24313 sacks, 0 interceptions, 0 fumbles recoveredRDEMark Anderson24114 sacks, 0 interceptions, 0 fumbles recoveredLLBHunter Hillenmeyer27414 sacks, 0 interceptions, 1 fumble recoveredMLBBrian Urlacher29716 sacks, 5 interceptions, 2 fumbles recoveredRLBLance Briggs*27414 sacks, 0 interceptions, 1 fumble recoveredLCBCharles Tillman26415 sacks, 3 interceptions, 0 fumbles recoveredRCBTrumaine McBride22Rook9 sacks, 0 interceptions, 1 fumble recoveredSSAdam Archuleta30610 sacks, 1 interception, 1 fumble recoveredFSDanieal Manning25115 sacks, 2 interceptions, 0 fumbles recovered
Sours: https://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/chi/_roster.htm


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