Tag:Eli Manning
Posted on: January 6, 2011 10:59 pm
 

Polamalu is one popular dude

T. Polamalu sold the most jerseys in the NFL this year. Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Tim Tebow didn’t lead the league in jersey sales this season (that’s shocking for the Wonder Boy, I know). Neither did Drew Brees nor Peyton Manning nor Tom Brady nor Roger Goodell nor Michael Vick (nor Ron Mexico for that matter).

You know who did? Troy Polamalu.

According to CNBC’s Darren Rovell, Polamalu is the first defensive player to earn this distinction since Brian Urlacher in 2006.

The list:

1. Polamalu

2, Brees

3. Tebow

4. Manning

5. Brady

6. Vick

7. Aaron Rodgers

8. Eli Manning

9. DeSean Jackson

10. Mark Sanchez

11. Tony Romo

12. Brett Favre

As Rovell writes, Vick wasn’t even in the top-25 of jersey sales through Halloween (I guess being pretty awesome at quarterback helps your bottom line). Meanwhile, Favre hasn’t been this low since 2006 when he finished 14th (I guess being a lightning rod for criticism, sexual and otherwise, helps kill your Q rating).

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Posted on: December 27, 2010 2:57 pm
 

Hot Routes 12.27.10 playoff pushes

Hot Routes

Posted by Andy Benoit

The Packers were 5/6 in the red zone Sunday. The Giants did not even reach the red zone.

Eli Manning became the first Giants quarterback since YA Tittle 71 years ago to have 30 touchdown passes in a season.

217 of New England’s 348 yards at Buffalo came on the ground.

How’s this for turnover differential: Patriots 0 turnovers, Bills 7. That’s not points off turnovers, that’s just turnovers.

Rookie free agent Kyle Love started at NT for the Pats. He recorded a sack and two tackles.

Chicago’s Johnny Knox had four catches for 92 yards against the Jets. He needs just 40 yards to reach 1,000 on the season.

Chris Harris recovered a fumble, snatched a game-clinching interception and led the Bears with 11 tackles. He also broke up a pass and registered a tackle for a loss.

The Ravens netted just 97 yards passing against the Browns.

The Browns’ only touchdown pass Sunday came from wideout Mohammad Massaquoi.

Time of possession continued to be a problem for the Titans. They controlled the ball for only 20:56 against the Chiefs.

Super talented but equally raw tight end Jared Cook led Tennessee with 96 yards on five receptions. Randy Moss was not even targeted.

With the running game stalled much of the afternoon, Rams quarterback Sam Bradford stepped up and completed 28/37 for 292 against the 49ers.

Michael Crabtree had six catches for 122 yards and a touchdown. It was just Crabtree’s second 100-yard game season and only the third time he’s gone over 60 yards this year.

After going four weeks without a sack, Rams DE James Hall has now reached the quarterback in back-to-back games. Hall had 1.5 sacks on Sunday.

After losing an NFL-record 26 consecutive road games, the Lions have now won back-to-back contests away from home. Detroit’s win left Miami with a 1-7 record at Sun Life Stadium.

Bobby Carpenter, Nathan Vasher and Lawrence Jackson were Detroit’s top three tacklers Sunday. All were acquired as hugely disappointing castoffs from other teams.

The Redskins and Jaguars both failed to reach the 80-yard rushing mark Sunday.

Mike Thomas has evolved into Jacksonville’s No. 1 receiver. He was the team’s statistical leader once again with 96 yards on six catches. Also, emerging wideout Jason Hill added 77 yards on four receptions.

Hmmmm….maybe Carson Palmer CAN still play after all. Without having to worry about two diva receivers, Palmer spread the ball around against San Diego Sunday, completing 16/21 passes for 269 yards and four touchdowns. Jermaine Gresham, Andre Caldwell and Jerome Simpson all had at least four catches and 55-plus yards receiving.

Eric Weddle led the Chargers with 16 tackles…which tells you that top inside linebacker Stephen Cooper wasn’t playing.

With Andre Johnson out of the lineup, Houston wideout Jacoby Jones stepped up with five catches for 115 yards against the Broncos.

In a complete role reversal, the Colts outrushed the Raiders 191-80.

Jacob Tamme caught seven passes, giving him 60 on the season.

The Bucs outgained the Seahawks 439 to 174.

Kellen Winslow had his best game of the season, catching seven passes for 98 yards and two touchdowns.

Geno Hayes led the Bucs with two sacks.


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Posted on: December 23, 2010 12:04 pm
 

Vick dominating holiday season jersey sales

Posted by Andy Benoit
M. Vick (US Presswire)
We all know Michael Vick’s popularity has surged in recent weeks – the Pro Bowl fan vote tallies tell us that. It’s one thing to vote for a player; it’s another to spend money on him. Below is perhaps the greatest piece of evidence that football fans (and perhaps only football fans) have not just forgiven Vick but have embraced him. Via Philly.com is a list of the 10 highest selling jerseys in the NFL during the holiday shopping season (i.e. the past four weeks). Three of those ten jerseys belong to Vick. Here's the list (courtesy of Philly.com): 

1. Michael Vick replica (jade)

2. Mark Sanchez replica team (green)

3. Michael Vick youth replica (white)

4. Hakeem Nicks replica team (blue)

5. Peyton Manning toddler/child (royal)

6. Eli Manning (blue)

7. Troy Polamalu (black)

8. LaDainian Tomlinson (green)

9. Michael Vick (black)

10. Troy Polamalu replica (black)

Jersey sales offer a different perspective on a player’s popularity than Q ratings and opinion polls. Generally, a person only shells out $100 for a jersey if they’re a hardcore fan of a particular team. That’s why four players from the big-market New York teams made the list. And it’s no surprise that Troy Polamalu, the star of football’s most popular team (aside from the Cowboys), is on there twice. Philadelphia is a big market, but it’s behind New York, Chicago and Dallas/Fort Worth.

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Posted on: December 15, 2010 6:49 pm
 

Archie Manning talks concussions and quarterbacks

Posted by Andy Benoit

The Packers have said that quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who suffered his second concussion in six weeks against the Lions last Sunday, will not practice this week until at least Friday. His status for the Patriots game this Sunday night is very much up in the air.
A. Manning (US Presswire)
Rodgers’ situation casts a bright light on the concussion issues that have taken center stage in the NFL this season. This is essentially the first case of a superstar player possibly having to sit out in what amounts to a virtual “must-win” game.

We had a chance to ask Archie Manning – a man who knows a thing or two about playing with concussions – if he’d want Peyton or Eli to play if they were in Rodgers’ position.

“I’d certainly be concerned,” Archie Manning said. “I think the good news is unlike years ago when I played, I think the league and doctors and teams are on top of this. But it’s just such a concern, I’ve never seen so many concussions. And I know years ago they didn’t call them concussions, they said you were just dinged. They didn’t pay as much attention as they do now. Certainly I’d be concerned if it was my son.”

It just so happens that because the man Rodgers once backed up missed his team’s game Monday night with a shoulder injury, Archie’s oldest quarterbacking son now holds the longest consecutive starts streak in the NFL (205). And the game Brett Favre missed Monday night was also Eli Manning’s 100th consecutive start.

So why is it that the Manning boys don’t get hurt?

“My advice has always been to know what you’re doing so you can get rid of the football,” Archie Manning said after noting simple good fortune. “I think the cerebral part of the game is important. If you hold onto the ball, somebody is going to hit you. The less times you get hit, the greater chance you have to answer the bell every Sunday. But I’m not proclaiming anyone to be an ironman because it’s a tough game out there and anyone can get hurt on any play.”

That, of course, is the main reason there’s so much concern about putting Rodgers on the field this Sunday.

Archie Manning is spreading the word about college football’s Liberty Mutual 2010 Coach of the Year Award. Fans can vote daily now through December 28.

Posted on: December 15, 2010 9:14 am
Edited on: December 15, 2010 10:38 am
 

Giants WR Smith to undergo season-ending surgery

Posted by Will Brinson

Update (10:35): Smith is donecakes, as Giants' PR man Pat Hanlon announced Tuesday that the wide receiver was examined by team physician Russell Warren and then had an MRI on his left knee that revealed an articular cartilage tear that will require season-ending surgery.

Steve Smith finally returned to the Giants' lineup Monday after a month-long absence with a partially torn pectoral muscle. The Giants rolled over the Minnesota (although Smith only caught one ball), but the victory might have been costly, as Smith will reportedly miss the remainder of the 2010 season with a knee injury.

The New York Daily News' Ralph Vacchiano reports Wednesday morning via sources that Smith suffered a torn meniscus in his knee.

"This does not look good for him at all," one of the sources said.

Vacchiano's source did not, however, "know the severity" of the tear, so it's possible that Smith won't miss the rest of the season.

Indeed, the Giants have yet to mention anything regarding an injury to Smith's knee -- he supposedly hurt his hip early in the fourth quarter on his only catch of the game, but given the shroud of overcoverage that Brett Favre induced onto that game, it's no surprise that some injury news could sneak out. 

According to Vacchiano, when Smith was taken for an MRI on his hip Monday, the medical staff discovered the knee injury, although the Giants have yet to announce it.

What happens to Smith then, provided this report is true? Well, the Giants would either have to place him on injured reserve, ending his season, or hope that he can heal in time for one of their three remaining regular season games (and hopefully, the first round of the playoffs).

That's tricky, though, because if Smith doesn't make it back in time, he takes up a roster space and damages the Giants' depth.

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Posted on: December 15, 2010 12:18 am
 

Top Ten With a Twist: Super Bowl contenders

New England has to be considered a Super Bowl contender (US Presswire). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

It’s getting to be about that time.

The time when we really can crack down on the best teams in the NFL and really figure out which squads are legitimate Super Bowl contenders. Preseason favorites (like, ahem, the Jets) have begun to show cracks in the foundation, while other teams – in this case, it’s just one team, really – have begun pulling away.

Three weeks left in the regular season, so we should have a pretty good indication of which team is going to do what once it makes the playoffs (if it, in fact, makes the playoffs at all). Without further ado, here’s your guide to which squad will be spending February in Dallas.

10. Jaguars: Why they will: Why the hell not? I mean, they won’t really. But RB Maurice Jones-Drew is fun to watch, and QB David Garrard has played great football lately. Jacksonville is just a fun underdog to watch. Why they won’t: I’m not even sure they’re good enough to get to the playoffs.

9. Chargers: Why they will: QB Philip Rivers is still having a fantastic season and is still an MVP candidate. Plus, San Diego is the No. 1 defense in the NFL (you can look it up!). Why they won’t: They simply haven’t played well for most of this season. Losses that look like this: 27-20 to the Seahawks; 35-27 and 28-13 to the Raiders; 20-17 to the Rams.

8. Bears: Why they will: They’ve surpassed many people’s expectations for the season while dragging coach Lovie Smith off the hot seat, so why can’t the surprises continue? I mean, if Jay Cutler can play fairly well on a consistent basis, anything can happen. Why they won’t: The offense isn’t good enough, and the defense isn’t good enough to overcome one of (statistically) the worst offenses in the league.

7. Ravens: Why they will: They’ve got plenty of talent at the WR position, and much of the time, QB Joe Flacco can even get his receivers the ball. Plus, there’s always Terrell Suggs and Ray Lewis. Why they won’t: Did you see the way the defense collapsed Monday vs. the Texans? That’s unlike the Baltimore defense we’re accustomed to seeing every season. That secondary struggles, as well.

The duo of B. Jacobs and A. Bradshaw has been big for New York this year (US Presswire). 6. Giants: Why they will: The Giants offense, though beat up in the WR corps, still picks up the yards. Once they figured out their roles, the running back duo of Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw has been outstanding. Why they won’t: For one, Eli Manning doesn’t have very many healthy receivers. For two, the team won’t stop turning the ball over to its opponents.

5. Eagles: Why they will: Michael Vick, LeSean McCoy and DeSean Jackson can lead this team anywhere. The proof lies in the league-leading 402 yards of offense Philadelphia produces per game. Why they won’t: Some injuries on defense – CB Asante Samuel, LB Stewart Bradley and DE Brandon Graham – certainly don’t help. Plus, it seems like Vick would have to play perfect all the way through, doesn’t it?

4. Steelers: Why they will: The Steelers played well without QB Ben Roethlisberger, and now with him in there – even though he’s less than 100 percent – they’re nearly unbeatable. Plus, you know, Troy Polamalu. They don’t win ‘em pretty, but they win ‘em anyway. Why they won’t: The offensive line isn’t very good. Like, not very good at all.

3. Saints: Why they will: New Orleans has played progressively better as the season has neared its end. Even if the Saints can’t catch the Falcons in the NFC South, the wild card should be there for the taking, and hopefully for them, they would catch one of the NFC West teams on the road. Why they won’t: They’re not as good as they were last year.

2. Falcons: Why they will: They have the quarterback, they have the running back, they have the receivers, they have the TE and they have the coaching (and a pretty decent defense). There’s a lot to like about this Atlanta squad. Why they won’t: Not a ton of guys on the team have been on teams that have made deep playoff runs. Unlike, say, the New Orleans Saints.

1. Patriots: Why they will: It’s obvious. Rewatch their last two games – destructions of the Jets and the Bears. Why they won’t: Can Tom Brady really keep up this unbelievable pace? Isn’t the young – and, at times, ineffective – secondary eventually going to get the team in trouble? Especially if the Patriots face somebody like Philip Rivers or Drew Brees?

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Posted on: December 10, 2010 1:59 pm
 

Smith, Nicks questionable for Giants, should play

Posted by Will Brinson

Giants fans concerned about the team's wide receiver depth can breathe a little easier for the moment, as it appears as if both Steve Smith and Hakeem Nicks will return Sunday against Minnesota.

For the moment, they're both listed as "questionable" (as noted by our Giants Rapid Reporter Alex Raskin) but coach Tom Coughlin expects his star receivers to start in Week 14.

Smith apparently "fell hard at practice" Friday, but "bounced right up" and later told reporters himself that he expected to play Sunday.

Smith's missed a substantial portion of time with a partially torn pectoral muscle, while Nicks missed a few weeks due to compartment syndrome in his leg.

Even as freak as those accidents are, the craziest thing about the Giants WR situation is that, as they vie for a division title and a playoff berth, they're starting to get pretty healthy, which could mean they peak at the right time.

Add in a dangerous pair of running backs, one of the toughest quarterbacks in the game (Mike Freeman's words, not mine, but I'll agree), a stout defense with dangerous pass-rushing potential, and the Giants have "peaking at the right time" stamped all over them. Last time that happened (2007), things worked out alright for the G-Men.

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Posted on: December 9, 2010 12:46 pm
 

Giants get stars back

Posted by Andy Benoit
H. Nicks (US Presswire)
A little while back, the injury bug bit the New York Giants passing game so harshly that even Amani Toomer and Ike Hilliard probably felt it. Steve Smith was lost in Week 10 with a pec injury. Hakeem Nicks went out in Week 12 with a freak lower leg issue. The week before, Ramses Barden had been lost for the season with a foot injury.

To make matters worse, left tackle David Diehl battled a hamstring problem during this time and was out of the lineup. So the Giants were forced to turn to street free agent receivers like Michael Clayton, Derek Hagan and Devin Thomas.

After losing Smith, New York lost back-to-back games against NFC East foes Dallas and Philly. It looked as if the media would once again rush to the switch of Tom Coughlin’s proverbial hot seat.

But then the Giants renewed their rushing attack and won two-straight. True, home wins against the Jaguars and Redskins can be expected. But the bottom line is the Giants are now 8-4, tied atop the NFC East, and healthy at just the right time.

Smith and Nicks both returned to practice this week and appear set to play Sunday against Minnesota. David Diehl is also back after missing four games. Thus, Eli Manning once again has his reliable third down slot target, his most explosive catch-and-run deep threat and a veteran to protect his blind side. And, what’s more, he has a golden opportunity to quickly re-establish a rhythm with his targets, as the Vikings, because of iffy awareness from their safeties and a rotation of vulnerable No. 2 corners, have been inconsistent in the secondary this season.

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