Series history and predictions The New Orleans Saints (2-1) meet the New York Giants (1-2) this afternoon in the 30th meeting between these two NFC franchises. The Giants hold a 16-13 edge in the series [url=http://www.thesaintsfootballauthentic.com/drew-brees-jersey-authentic]Youth Drew Brees Jersey[/url] , including a 12-4 advantage when the games are played in New York, site of today's contest. Their first meeting against each other was in the Saints inaugural season of 1967. It was the fourth game of the season, and the Saints were playing their first road game in franchise history, on October 8, 1967 in Yankee Stadium. Despite New York rolling up 535 yards of total offense against just 210 for the Saints, the Giants needed a fourth quarter touchdown to edge the fledgling New Orleans franchise 27-21. Their next meeting, also in New York, would be a year later nearly to the day, October 6, 1968. The score wasn't nearly as close this time, as the Giants took advantage of four New Orleans turnovers on their way to a 38-21 win. The Saints would get their first victory over the Giants that following season, again on the road, on November 16, 1969. In a back and forth affair that saw the teams combine for 30 second quarter points, the Saints emerged victorious 25-24, on a 4th quarter field goal by kicker Tom Dempsey. The first time that the Saints hosted the Giants in New Orleans (Tulane Stadium) was the third game of the 1970 season, a 14-10 Saints victory. Neither the Giants or the Saints were very successful through the 1970's and into the early '80's, but New Orleans did manage a 3-2 record against New York though the disco decade. By the mid-1980's, both teams had built themselves into a perennial playoff contender in the very strong NFC, powered by strong running games and intimidating defenses. The fortunes of both franchises turned around during the 1981 draft by adding a future Hall of Fame linebacker. The Giants by selecting Lawrence Taylor with the second overall pick (one behind the Saints selection of running back George Rogers), and New Orleans drafting of Rickey Jackson with the 51st overall selection. Both teams would build linebacking corps around their iconic superstars that were considered by many to be among the top linebacker units in the history of the league. The Saints and Giants met seven times during Taylor's and Jackson's tenures, 1981-93, with the respective teams that drafted them. With other defensive stars roaming the field like Carl Banks, Harry Carson, Pepper Johnson, Leonard Marshall of the Giants, and Pat Swilling, Sam Mills, Vaughan Johnson, and Wayne Martin of the Saints [url=http://www.thesaintsfootballauthentic.com/alex-anzalone-jersey-authentic]Womens Alex Anzalone Jersey[/url] , points were often hard to come by. New Orleans was only 2-5 against New York in those games, but the average score was just 16-14, and the contests were fierce and physical wars. Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty ImagesTwo-time Super Bowl winner Eli Manning is a native of New Orleans and of course the son of Archie Manning, quarterback of the Saints from 1971-82. Eli's first start against his father's former team was on September 19, 2005. The game was played in New York, but the Saints were considered the home team, because the site of the game had to be moved because of the devastation caused to the Gulf Coast due to Hurricane Katrina. The Saints outgained the Giants that day, 422-257, but 3 interceptions by quarterback Aaron Brooks proved to be their undoing, as they fell to defeat, 27-10. Tragedy had intertwined these teams nearly four years earlier as well. New Orleans would visit the Giants on September 30, 2001, in what was New York's first home game since the 9/11 terrorist attack on the city. In another contest where football certainly took a backseat to life events, the Giants would edge New Orleans that day by a 21-13 score. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty ImagesSaints quarterback Drew Brees is 4-2 against the Giants since joining New Orleans in 2006, scoring over 40 points in three of those meetings. Brees and Manning have engaged in some memorable aerial duals during their showdowns, including one of the most exciting offensive shootouts in recent history. On November 1, 2015, the two teams combined for 63 first downs, 1,024 total yards, and 101 points during a 52-49 last second Saints victory. Manning completed 77% of his passes for 350 yards and six touchdowns during the game. Not to be outdone, Brees outdueled his counterpart by completing 78% for an eye-popping 505 yards and an NFL-record seven touchdown passes. The last meeting between these two took place during the second game of the 2016 season in New York. The kicking game would make the difference in this matchup between two of the conference's top quarterbacks. Early in the game, Saints kicker Wil Lutz had a short field goal blocked, which New York defensive back Janoris Jenkins returned for a touchdown. In a defensive struggle, the Giants converted a short kick of their own to pull off a 16-13 victory. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty ImagesDespite lofty statistics, Brees' teams have often struggled to put points on the board when they travel to The Big Apple, whether it's to play either the Giants or the Jets. New Orleans is just 1-2 as the visiting team against the Giants during Brees' tenure, and have averaged just 23 points in those games while being prone to some costly turnovers. They come into this game averaging nearly 35 points per game, with Brees averaging 359 yards passing per game and throwing 8 touchdown passes with no turnovers. He benefits from having two of the best offensive weapons in the game with wideout Michael Thomas and running back Alvin Kamara. The New Orleans offense is still without suspended Pro Bowl running back Mark Ingram however, and has struggled to consistently run the ball. New York will be missing a few key defenders for this one [url=http://www.thesaintsfootballauthentic.com/marshon-lattimore-jersey-authentic]Youth Marshon Lattimore Jersey[/url] , sidelined by injury, but still have defensive playmakers such as Jenkins, Landon Collins, and Alec Ogletree. Defensively, the Saints have played well against the run but have been getting bombarded against the pass after such improvements in that area last season. Eli Manning has two very talented receivers in Sterling Shepard and former L.S.U. star Odell Beckham Jr., as well as dangerous rookie running back Saquon Barkley, but the Giants have struggled mightily along the offensive line. Cam Jordan, Sheldon Rankins, and rookie Marcus Davenport have the ability to heavily pressure Manning, hoping to force him into the mistakes that the Saints defense has caused little of this season. New Orleans must get better coverage and communication along the back end, and defensive backs Marshon Lattimore and Marcus Williams will need to play at a Pro Bowl level in order to help contain New York's skill position stars. The Giants have not had a 30 point game in the last 35 games, dating back to the season finale of the 2015 season. They will likely need to score that many to keep pace with Brees and his passing offense. New Orleans is looking for history to repeat itself from last season, when they struggled defensively to open up the year, but fortified itself into a opportunistic unit that could pressure opposing offenses into game changing mistakes. Saints 30Giants 21Game Balls from the Saints 33-18 capture of New York The New Orleans Saints won their third straight game, and second consecutive on the road, with a 33-18 victory over the New York Giants on Sunday. With the win, the 3-1 Saintsmove into sole possession of first place in the NFC South over the idle Carolina Panthers. New Orleans won without having to rely on statistically strong performances from quarterback Drew Brees or wideout Michael Thomas. The Saints instead got an improved performance from their struggling defense. They allowed the Giants just 239 yards after their initial scoring drive, sacking Eli Manning 3 times, forcing two turnovers, and controlling the Giants playmakers. New Orleans still left some points on the board in the first half, and the Saints complimentary targets still have not shown a consistent ability to produce if Thomas or Kamara are controlled. Nevertheless, New Orleans still had control of the game throughout the final three quarters. Here are the game balls from this important conference win on the road. Alvin Kamara Brad Penner-USA TODAY SportsKamara takes his weekly place among our game ball recipients with his best rushing output of the season. He carried the ball 19 times for 134 yards and a team record tying three rushing touchdowns. He also added 47 yards receiving on a team-high five receptions. Kamara's 181 total yards were nearly 47% of the Saints total output for the day. The New Orleans game plan again called for attacking the defense on the perimeter with their rush attempts, hoping to get their second year superstar in space. Kamara also showed the ability to pick up tough yards between the tackles as well against a rugged New York defense. When more special teams buffoonery from Ted Ginn Jr. caused the Saints to be pinned at their 3-yd. line in a one score game, it was Kamara that saved the game. He would have four carries for 61 yards on a 6-play, 97-yd. march, and clinched the game on a 49 yard touchdown dash over the right side. Demario Davis Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY SportsDavis' play is improving with each week, and is showing why his free agent addition this offseason had so many excited. The team's leading tackler had 11 more stops this game, including 2 tackles for loss, and 2 monstrous second half sacks on blitzes up the middle. Davis led a defensive charge that hurried and harassed Giants quarterback Eli Manning all afternoon, as well as controlling Saquon Barkley [url=http://www.thesaintsfootballauthentic.com/austin-carr-jersey-authentic]Womens Austin Carr Jersey[/url] , the talented rookie running back. Outside of a 28-yd. rush due to broken outside containment, Barkley averaged only two yards per rush, and was held to 100 total yards on 16 touches. Davis has added athleticism to an improved New Orleans linebacking corps, and looks to be emerging into a playmaker for the defense. Taysom Hill Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY SportsThe "swiss army knife" of the New Orleans team is more of a trick gadget than a primary offensive weapon, but one that seems to make plays on a weekly basis. Hill completed a pass to Justin Hardee on a fake punt that led to the Saints first score, and would have had his first career touchdown pass later in the first half, if not for a Kamara drop at the goal line. He also caught a pass, provided some key blocks in short yardage, and rushed for 28 yards. He is the team's second leading rusher on the season, and coach Sean Payton has been showing increasing confidence with his play calls when Hill is in the game. Taylor Stallworth and Tyeler Davison Photo by Elsa/Getty ImagesThe Saints were expected to pressure Manning with an outside rush from Cam Jordan and Marcus Davenport against New York's struggling offensive tackles. While both Jordan and Davenport had solid games, recording multiple tackles for loss, it was the play of the Saints interior line that dominated. Davison returned to the lineup after missing the last two games with injury. He, Stallworth, and Sheldon Rankins stonewalled the Giants inside run attempts all afternoon, and provided good push on the New York pass pocket. Stallworth and Davison combined for five tackles, but also allowed the Saints linebackers to flow freely through the play to create havoc for the New York offense. Davison's 4th quarter sack of Manning forced a fumble that was recovered by Stallworth, and sealed an important road victory for the defending NFC South champions. Marshon Lattimore Photo by Al Bello/Getty ImagesWhen you scoop up a fumble and are on the way to a sure touchdown, only to get pushed out of bounds by one of the slowest quarterbacks in the league, you may not be worthy of a game ball. Still, Lattimore provided exemplary pass coverage and physicality all afternoon. He was primarily responsible for holding Odell Beckham Jr. to just 59 yards in five catches, including minus four yards in the first half, visibly frustrating the Giants star. Fellow corner Ken Crawley still had his struggles, and New York wideout Sterling Shepard caught 10 passes, a touchdown, and a 2-pt. conversion, but the Saints secondary prevented any big plays over the top. Lattimore, last season's defensive rookie of year, will need to continue this kind of lockdown, physical performance if the New Orleans pass defense is going to repeat it's 2017 success.
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