Eli Manning led the New York Giants to a last-minute 21-17 win over the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl in Indianapolis on Feb. 5. Manning said a couple of months ago that he felt he was just as good as Patriots’ QB Tom Brady and then went out and proved it. It’s the second time Manning has guided his New York teammates to a Super Bowl win over New England as he also did it back in 2008.
The Giants marched 88 yards down the field and scored the winning touchdown with just 57 seconds left to play when Ahmad Bradshaw carried the ball in the end zone from just six yards out. Ironically, he tried not to score when he realized the Patriots were giving him the touchdown.
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick figured it’d be better to let the Giants score a touchdown so they could get the ball back for a chance to come back and win the game. He reasoned that the Giants would just run down the clock and attempt a short field goal if he didn’t allow the touchdown. The tactic made sense, but needless to say it failed.
Along with the two Super Bowl rings, Manning also has won the MVP award for both of the wins. However, the win wasn’t sealed until the last play was completed. Brady’s last-second hail-Mary pass dropped to the turf in the end zone as the game ended. Manning got off to a Super Bowl record start by completing his first nine passes. Brady then completed 16 in a row during the second and third quarters, which broke the previous mark of 13 set by Joe Montana.
Manning completed 30 out of 40 passes overall for a total of 296 yards with a touchdown. Brady completed 27 out of for 41, gaining 276 yards. He threw for two touchdown passes and an interception. Scoring late in a game is nothing new for manning since he led the giants to six comeback wins during the season and threw 15 touchdown passes in the last quarter of games for a new league record.
Manning said when he realized the Patriots were allowing them to score a touchdown he yelled at Bradshaw to tell him not to score. Bradshaw then appeared to try and stop, but tumbled into the New England end zone. The Patriots came close to pulling off a thrilling comeback, but tight end Rob Gronkowski couldn’t hang onto the final desperation pass from Brady. That meant Brady still needs one more Super Bowl win to tie Joe Montana’s and Terry Bradshaw’s record of four quarterback wins.
Brady did tie the record for Super Bowl appearances though along with Belichick since it was their fifth trip to the NFL’s championship game. However, they found themselves down 9-0 before pulling out into a third-quarter 17-9 lead. Scotsman Lawrence Tynes then kicked two field goals for the Giants to close the gap to 17-15, setting the stage for the final touchdown.
Sixty-five-year-old Giants’ head coach Tom Coughlin became the oldest coach to win the Super Bowl while the giants became the first team with a 9-7 record to win the trophy. It’s the fourth Super Bowl win for the Giants, who now trail Pittsburgh (6), Dallas and San Francisco (5) for the most wins.