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Giants’ 2011-12 Timeline—the Road to Super Bowl XLVI: Fan’s View
It has been a roller-coaster season for the New York Giants, who survived injuries to key players, a mid-season losing streak and tough schedule to reach the final Sunday of the 2011-12 season. Here's a look back at the team's highest highs and lowest lows on their road to Super Bowl XLVI.
August 22, 2011 — In the second week of the preseason, the Giants smash the Chicago Bears, 41-13, but lose rising star corner back Terrell Thomas to a season-ending knee injury. It was the first of many key injuries the Giants suffered during a horrid preseason.
September 11, 2011 — The Giants kick off the 2011-12 regular season with a 28-14 loss on the road to the Washington Redskins. Eli Manning was sacked four times and completed only 18 of 32 passes for 268 yards, no touchdowns and one interception. Rex Grossman throws for 305 yards and two touchdowns.
September 25, 2011 — Behind a pair of touchdowns from Victor Cruz, the Giants defeat the much-hyped Philadelphia Eagles, 29-16, for their second straight win. Cruz beats prized free agent Nnamdi Asomugha for his second TD of the game to give the G-Men a 22-16 lead in the fourth quarter.
October 9, 2011 — Inexplicably, the Giants lose at home to the lowly Seattle Seahawks, 36-25, and the quarterback combination of Tarvaris Jackson and Charlie Whitehurst. Manning throws for 420 yards and three touchdowns, but he is intercepted a season-high three times as well. It won't be the last letdown.
November 6, 2011 — In a rematch of Super Bowl XLII, the Giants snap the New England Patriots' 20-game home winning streak with a 24-20 win. Manning backs up his claim of being an elite quarterback by finding tight end Jake Ballard for a one-yard touchdown with 15 seconds left in the game.
December 4, 2011 — A week after being embarrassed by the New Orleans Saints, 49-24, the Giants nearly beat the undefeated Green Bay Packers. However, Mason Crosby kicks a 30-yard field goal at the gun to erase Manning's game-tying drive seconds earlier and send the Giants to their fourth straight loss.
December 11, 2011 — With their season on the line, the G-Men defeat the Dallas Cowboys, 37-34, in Dallas. Jason Pierre-Paul, in full beast mode, comes up with a safety and blocks a potential game-tying field goal as time expires to lift New York. Brandon Jacobs runs for 102 yards and two touchdowns.
December 24, 2011 — After being called out several times by New York Jets coach Rex Ryan, the Giants respond with an emotionally-charged 29-14 win at MetLife Stadium. The turning point in the game is a 99-yard touchdown by Cruz in the second quarter to give the Giants a 10-7 lead. They never looked back.
January 15, 2012 — After grounding the Atlanta Falcons in the opening round, the Giants take out the Green Bay Packers, 37-20, in the divisional round. For the second straight game, Hakeem Nicks scores two touchdowns, including a 37-yard Hail Mary to end the first half. Manning throws for 330 yards.
January 22, 2012 — Big Blue stuns the San Francisco 49ers, 20-17, as Lawrence Tynes boots a 31-yard field goal in overtime to send the Giants to the Super Bowl. Devin Thomas recovers a pair of key fumbles on special teams, including one in overtime, and Manning tosses for 316 yards and two TDs.
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Adam Martini is a freelance sports writer who proudly wears his Rodney Hampton jersey on Sundays during the football season. He grew up in Queens, N.Y. rooting for the Giants despite being surrounded by Jets fans.
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