Eli and Peyton Manning will square off this weekend in the “Manning Bowl” for the first time since 2006, when the Colts defeated the Giants by a score of 26-21 at Giants Stadium.
Things have changed since then, to say the least. Peyton and the Colts struck gold by defeating the Bears in Super Bowl XLI later that season, and Eli and co. followed suit with perhaps the biggest upset in NFL history when Big Blue beat the undefeated New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII as a wild card team.
This edition of the “Manning Bowl” will take place in Indianapolis, where seventh-year quarterback Eli Manning has never played. Eli played fairly well at home last weekend against the Panthers, throwing three touchdowns to Hakeem Nicks while racking up 263 yards in the air. Look for Manning to continue his success this week against a beat up Colts’ secondary, but more importantly keep an eye on the running game for Big Blue.
Arian Foster carved up the Colts with over 250 yards on the ground last weekend, which should raise some red flags going into this week’s game. With the bruiser, Brandon Jacobs, the Giants will try to wear down the Colts’ defense before they unleash the speedy Ahmad Bradshaw.
Peyton, on the other hand, will look to get back on track after his team’s setback in a surprising loss to the Texans that sent the Colts to the bottom of the pile in the AFC South. The rest of the three teams in the AFC South won last Sunday. Look for Peyton to go to the air throughout this game after he attempted 57 passes last week, but keep an eye on the Giants’ defensive line to disrupt Indy’s passing attack as well.
As long as the Giants’ offense is able to eat up the clock throughout the game and put points on the board, they should be in decent shape to win the game. Keeping the ball out of the hands of Peyton and the rest of the Colts’ high-powered offense will be important. During an interview this week, head coach Tom Coughlin said it best:
“It’s a keep-away game against their offense.”