Super Bowl XLVI keys to the game, prediction

There are a few major keys that will determine the outcome of Super Bowl XLVI between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots. I’ve analyzed both teams tendencies and statistics for the 2011 season and it comes down to about three main goals that each team must achieve to guarantee victory tonight.

These are the keys to a Super Bowl victory for the New York Giants:

Brady could end up like Alex Smith two weeks ago - Jason O. Watson-US PRESSWIRE

Do what you’ve done all year; get to the passer. The New York Giants were tied for second in the NFL this season with 48 sacks on defense. New York was also tied for second in safeties this year, with two. They have four legitimate full-time starters on any other roster, but because they are all on the same team they rotate. They even have a “NASCAR” package where they put in all four speed guys at the same time (usually on 3rd and long). If the Giants can disrupt Brady in the pocket, they will have the chance to be successful in coverage and ultimately on offense with the extra possessions.

Eli tosses an interception versus the Redskins - CHRIS FAYTOK/THE STAR-LEDGER via US PRESSWIRE

Don’t turn the ball over, at all. The Giants offense cannot turn the ball over against New England. Even if the Patriots offense isn’t having it’s best day, New York can’t give them extra possessions. The Patriots can have great games against a good defense. See their first playoff game against Denver.

Victor Cruz could have a field day against the Patriots secondary - William Perlman/The Star-Ledger via US PRESSWIRE

Throw the ball early and often. If there were ever a secondary to want to pick apart, it’d be these New England Patriots. The Washington Redskins with Rex Grossman had two receivers go over 90 yards in Jabar Gaffney and the recently-resigned Donte Stallworth. Rex also didn’t have a bad game himself with 252 yards and two touchdowns.

These are the keys for a New England Patriots’ Super Bowl victory:

Patriots will have to play "lights out" - Michael Ivins-US PRESSWIRE

Play solid defense for sixty minutes. In all likelihood the Pats will have to play one of their best defensive games of the season to win tonight. They have to force Eli to think, disrupt routes at the line of scrimmage and hopefully force a few turnovers. Their secondary will be the major issue. I’m sure Belichick knows this and it’ll be interesting to see what he does about it.

Gronk want touchdowns

Control the clock on offense. This doesn’t necessarily mean that BJGE will carry the ball a significant amount of times. Controlling the clock can be done with an effective short passing game. Tight end Rob Gronkowski will start; the question is whether or not he’ll be at full speed when the pressure is on that ankle. The Pats will have to limit the Giants possessions and hopefully wear down that front seven by the fourth quarter.

The Patriots will have to play for the win at all times - Tim Farrell/The Star-Ledger via US PRESSWIRE

Re-watch the Redskins’ tape versus New York, again. I’m sure that Belichick has looked through all of the Giants losses and noticed one thing. The Redskins were the only team to beat them twice. Washington beat them with mediocre quarterback play and a lot of heart. The Skins just flat out wanted both games more than New York. The Giants tend to do well when they are the public underdog. The Pats are still favored in Vegas, but I believe much of the football world thinks that New York will win.

Prediction:

New York Giants fans pose with a sign after defeating the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII at the University of Phoenix Stadium. - Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE

The New York Giants will play the game to win and go for the kill early. I truly want nothing more than to see Eli Manning leave the field in disappointment, but I believe the Giants matchup well against New England and will win. Tom Brady is one of the greatest to play the position so the game will be close for a while, but New York will pull away towards the end.

New York Giants 38, New England Patriots 24.

Stay tuned to Riggo’s Rag for more Super Bowl insight! You can follow the blog on twitter at @RiggosRag and myself at @KMawyer2

Topics: New England Patriots, New York Giants, Super Bowl XLVI, Washington Redskins

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