New York Giants
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We’ll do the historical rundown momentarily, but as this is NFLbets, we’ll start with a betting-centric angle on the ever-lucrative New York Giants. Here’s a tip: If there’s no clear favorite to take the NFC, hedge with the New York Giants. In each of the team’s five Super Bowl appearance, only the Super Bowl XXI team (the 1986 Giants) had been favored to win the NFC. Further, in the *four* instances in which the Giants were underdogs – at +6½ against the BIlls in XXV, +3 against the Ravens in XXXV, -12 against the Patriots in XLIV, -3 against the Patriots in XLVI – the Giants won outright for upset victories. O, and each time they’d been underdogs in the NFC Championship Game, too.
And just because the phrase “New York Giants” doesn’t exactly conjure up images of domination for a decade or even a single season of all-time great proportions, but the truth is that this team has a history of winning while the rest of the league naps. The Giants’ eight NFL titles are topped only by the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears; their 32 playoff appearances are equaled by only the Packers and Dallas Cowboys; and with the second Super Bowl win over the Patriots, the Giants became the fourth member of the four-Lombardi club, along with storied franchises such as Green Bay, Dallas, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the San Francisco 49ers.
First playing in the NFL in 1925, the New York Giants didn’t take long to start winning, putting together an 11-1 regular season in ’27 and winning their first NFL title. The Giants rose the level of perpetual title threat in the 30s under head coach Steve Owen. Over 24 seasons spanning from 1930 to ’53, Owen’s Giants were good for a cumulative 153-100-17 record, a .605 winning percentage; in those two dozen years, the Giants played in 10 championship games, though only winning two.
The New York teams of the mid-1950s to early 60s typically included a fair share of All-Pros and future Hall of Famers, led by RB Frank Gifford most years. The Giants played in six title games between 1956 and ’63 while four times winning 10 or more of the 14 regular-season games, but only the relatively unheralded ’56 Giants would win a title after going 8-3-1 in the regular season.
The Super Bowl era for a few reasons were unkind to the Giants from 1965 and straight through the 70s. In these 15 years, the Giants managed just two seasons of better than .500 winning percentage and suffered four seasons of two wins or fewer. The franchise turned around in the 1980s, however, building a powerhouse on both sides of the ball with notables like Phil Simms, Joe Morris and only one of the greatest to ever play the game, Lawrence Taylor, coached by Bill Parcells. These Giants won two Super Bowls – including the upset over the Buffalo Bills’ revolutionary offense which was deftly neutralized by New York defensive coordinator Bill Belichick – and made five playoff runs between 1985 and ’90.
And sure, the 15-year period following Parcells’s departure was OK enough for Giants fans, but most lifelong diehards will forever look upon the era of Tom Coughlin and Eli Manning as the team’s finest ever. Between 2005 and ’11, Coughlin’s Giants made the playoffs five times and took those two wins over the Patriots in the big game. A pair of oddities about those teams: All six of the Coughlin/Manning Giants’ playoff wins came in the team’s championship runs; also, the Coughlin/Manning Giants were 3-2 against the Belichick/Brady Patriots while the rest of the league was 76-228.
For the official New York Giants website, click here.