TALE OF THE TAPE

Week 12: New York Giants Vs. Green Bay Packers

Giants
Packers
Super Bowl XLVI
Green Bay Packers v San Diego Chargers
Quarterback
The Giants have gone through a significant downturn over the last month of the season. Eli Manning has been a big part of that. There are no doubts about Manning’s ability to come through in big games and he is one of the elite quarterbacks in the game, but he is in a slump. If he has a tired arm, the bye week came at the right time and he needs to respond in this game.
Winner Aaron Rodgers is not one to let his team make excuses. Yes, the Packers have suffered a slew of injuries this year and they have not always played their best game. However, when the game comes down to late execution, Rodgers welcomes those opportunities and will usually put the ball on the money when the Packers have a chance to win. In a league with Drew Brees, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning, Rodgers just may be the best of the bunch.
Offense
Winner The Giants need to give Manning a solid ground game in order to bring out the best in their passing game. Ahmad Bradshaw has rushed for a solid 675 yards and his 4.5 ypc mark is respectable, but he has been up-and-down in his production. Wide receivers Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks have the ability to get open and make big play. Tight end Martellus Bennett is talented but inconsistent.
The absence of a ground game has not prevented head coach Mike McCarthy from piling up the rushing attempts. Alex Green has gotten plenty of attempts, but a mark of 3.1 yards per carry is not good enough. Receivers Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, James Jones and tight end Jermichael Finley have allowed the Packers to overcome the poor running attack and the absence of Greg Jennings (groin/abdomen).
Defense
Winner It’s not enough for the Giants to have the best pass rush on paper. They must turn that ability into consistent production if they are going to slow down Rodgers. Jason Pierre-Paul has 6.5 sacks, but he’s not on pace to match last year’s 16.5 sacks. The same holds for Osi Umenyiora and Justin Tuck. They need to pick it up and if they don’t against the Packers, Rodgers will burn them.
Don’t expect to see Clay Matthews in the lineup for the Packers. Matthews has been sidelined with a hamstring injury and he is not likely to play in this game. Matthews is a formidable pass rusher and he has 9.0 sacks to his credit. The Packers have gotten a lift this season from cornerback Casey Heyward, who has a team-leading 5 interceptions.
Special Teams
Winner If the game comes down to a field goal, head coach Tom Coughlin is confident that Lawrence Tynes can get the job done. Tynes gets plenty of opportunities and he has made 28-of-31 FG attempts. Steve Weatherford is averaging 46.9 yards per punt and has a long of 68 yards.
The Packers have done a decent job in kickoff and punt coverage this year. However, placekicker Mason Crosby has not found his rhythm this season. He has been a liability for the Packers and he has made just 11-of-18 field goal attempts this season. Tim Masthay has dropped 26 of his 48 punts in the opponents’ 20-yard line.

The Winner Is

Super Bowl XLVI
Winner Giants
3 out of 4

The Giants have had a week off to work out the kinks in their offense. If Manning is suffering from a tired arm, the time away should help return him to top form. The Packers have reeled off five straight win, but trying to stop the Giants without having Mathews in the lineup may be too much to ask.

MORE TALES OF THE TAPE

  1. EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 25:  Odell Beckham #13 of the New York Giants breaks a tackle by Josh Norman #24 of the Washington Redskins in the second half at MetLife Stadium on September 25, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 25:   Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers runs the ball against Everson Griffen #97 and Tom Johnson #92 of the Minnesota Vikings in the 1st half during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 25, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: New York Giants At Minnesota Vikings

    The Vikings defense has annihilated every opponent so far. Can they do it to the explosive Giants offense this week?

  2. KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 25: Center Mitch Morse #61 of the Kansas City Chiefs prepares to snap the ball to Alex Smith #11 at Arrowhead Stadium during the second quarter of the game against the New York Jets on September 25, 2016 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images) PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback  Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers passes against  Bennie Logan #96 of the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth quarter at Lincoln Financial Field on September 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: Kansas City Chiefs At Pittsburgh Steelers

    The Chiefs and Steelers battle it out in a match-up of AFC playoff contenders.

  3. ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 25:  Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws against the Chicago Bears in the fourth quarter at AT&T Stadium on September 25, 2016 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Running back Carlos Hyde #28 of the San Francisco 49ers rushes for a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on September 25, 2016 in Seattle, Washington. The Seahawks defeated the 49ers 37-18.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: Dallas Cowboys At San Francisco 49ers

    The Cowboys have been rolling with rookie QB Dak Prescott and RB Ezekiel Elliott. They look to continue that momentum this week.

See All Tales of the Tape

More From CBS Pittsburgh

Bringing You The Best in Sports Talk Radio
New Podcast Network
Learn How

Listen Live