The thing about Arsenal is they always try to walk it in
October 7, 2019 4:36 AM   Subscribe

I, a nerd, am going to see the NE Patriots play the Giants this week. If there is a pro sport I DO enjoy, it’s football. But I haven’t watch a game since maybe 2007. I have no affinity for the Pats or Giants (go Eagles). Can you catch me up on this match up in advance of Thursday’s game?

I know vaguely about the Antonio Brown debacle. I know Tom Brady is the greatest of all time or whatever. I don’t know any other players or any of the history (are they super duper rivals?) or the standings this year.

I’m not looking for a long form Deadspin analysis. Just the highlights!

Best IT Crowd ever.
posted by Admiral Haddock to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (15 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
COYG! Wait this isn’t about Arsenal?

I don’t think you need to know about players to enjoy an afternoon at the stadium. Yes, there is history between the two teams, with the biggest being when the Giants beat the Patriots in the Super Bowl to keep the latter from going unbeaten for the entire season and tying the Miami Dolphins as the only team to do so (yes, different season lengths). That was 11 years ago.

Don’t get bogged in that stuff. Have fun.
posted by terrapin at 4:44 AM on October 7, 2019

I wouldn't say there was an intense rivalry between these two teams, mostly because they play in different conferences. Yes, there are the Super Bowls. OTOH, there are a lot of Giants fans in New England, probably historically because New England was almost always a terrible team before the 2001 inflection point.

New England is currently undefeated and is cruising towards another playoff berth, despite the fact that their GOAT quarterback is nine thousand years old. The Giants are 2-3, finally cut bait with their sometimes-good sometimes-terrible QB Eli Manning and are playing the new guy, Daniel Jones. They are likely to have a somewhat difficult year.
posted by selfnoise at 4:53 AM on October 7, 2019 [2 favorites]

So, one thing is, Tom Brady is expected to pass Peyton Manning in total career passing yards this next week, to come into second place (behind other currently active player Drew Brees). It is possible play will stop, via timeout if necessary, for the stadium to play a congratulatory message or highlight this accomplishment. The crowd is definitely going to be anticipating this and will go absolutely wild when it happens, which could be fairly early in the game.
posted by Night_owl at 5:23 AM on October 7, 2019 [4 favorites]

The Giants' best player/arguably the league's best running back Saquon Barkley is potentially going to be back from injury after missing two weeks. He's fun to watch. They're pretty unlikely to win if he's still not fit.
posted by corvine at 5:30 AM on October 7, 2019

Tom Brady is still there. Antonio Brown is long gone. The Pats have their best defense ever, though it's kinda hard to tell because they've played the Bills, Jets, Dolphins, and Redskins (and, to be fair, the Steelers) so far.

The Giants are probably missing Saquon Barkley, and they aren't any good. Eli is on the bench. New QB is Daniel Jones, from Duke, who everybody laughed at them for taking too early in the draft, but...might be good? It's hard to tell. Anyway, get ready for a lot of interceptions.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 5:30 AM on October 7, 2019

What was Belichick thinking sending the Patriots to bed that early?
posted by humuhumu at 6:12 AM on October 7, 2019

The key thing you need to know is that, unless you are a Patriots fan, you root against the Patriots.
posted by escabeche at 7:18 AM on October 7, 2019 [20 favorites]

The Pats are 5-0 this season and it's a little weird how lopsided most of the games are that they have played. This is the first season after Gronkowski, the large golden retriever of the team, retired and so there was some question about whether Brady would be able to "click" with other team members the way he did with Gronk. They also lost Amendola who was incredible. Edleman is doing great though he took some time off for (I think) failing a drug test and then had a chest injury but seems to be doing okay. They have a few other people who have been out including their kicker Gostkowski who is out for the season. This means they have Nugent in and he's fine but untested in some ways, so there's more tension than usual when they are going for the extra points.

Brady is the oldest QB in football and sort of a weirdo (imho). He's in very good shape, has a special diet that people sometimes slag on him for. Has good sportsmanship with the other team and is ok in press conferences but can get really aggravated and huffy on the field when the team isn't super duper winning which is fun to watch a little because, my word, they're a very good team so what's to whine about. He has a supermodel wife who occasionally is a pill about the other members of the team not helping her husband do amazing. He is, by all accounts, a very good, um, thrower? Very accurate. He has a son, that son isn't into football.

The bigger deal is the Brady/Belickek (coach) combo. They've been together forever. Bellicheck, is, unlike Brady, a weird grouch but a very good coach. He is ridiculously terrible in press conferences and he dresses like he just woke up and it's laundry day.

Many people think/thought that the Pats are cheaters and depending which side you fall on this debate, they may just seem like terribly rich brats in a general sense, or that all their haters are just... jealous haters. There is also a pair of identical twins on the team which is a neat little bit of trivia. I've seen all the games this season and they're usually lively though sometimes lopsided. They do seem to be doing fine without Gronk and in yesterday's game there was really a lot of positive activity from everyone on the team it's not just a lot of "Tom mostly throws to Gronk" over and over. I don't know anything about the Giants.
posted by jessamyn at 9:38 AM on October 7, 2019 [3 favorites]

Also Josh Gordon is on the team and he’s been suspended by the league for most of the last 7 years for assorted drug problems dating back to high school. He seems to be clean for now, but if people are talking about him and mentioning weed/alcohol, that’s why.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 10:11 AM on October 7, 2019

Best IT Crowd ever. Thank you for making me think of it.

Don't wear a NY jersey if you're sitting with Pats fans, would be my thought. People will maybe drop beers on you?
posted by Lawn Beaver at 10:17 AM on October 7, 2019 [2 favorites]

"I know Tom Brady is the greatest of all time"

Sounds like you have a lot to learn about football. ;)

The big thing is the Super Bowl history. In typical New England fashion, the fact that they've won 300 other Super Bowls is much less salient than the fact that the Giants beat them in two. If you want to start a fight (you said you're an Eagles fan...), just mention the name David Tyree. He's a horrible football player who only played like seven football games ever before getting cut for being horrible, but somehow he was on the field in the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl as the Giants were trying to mount a comeback, and he somehow caught a pass with the top of his helmet to keep the Giants' game-winning drive alive. This remains a fresh wound for Pats fans. Seriously, just saying "David Tyree" will ruin my officemate's productivity for a good half a day, and he's not even a big fan. So yeah, just be aware that Pats fans will be angrier than usual.

The Brady yardage thing is going to be big, although, again, typical New England to celebrate a guy hitting second place.

Julian Edelman won the Super Bowl MVP last year despite missing a quarter of the season due to being suspended for taking steroids. That's something. #patriotway I don't believe any players on this year's team are actual multiple-murderers, though, which is a nice change.

The Giants are a horribly managed team. Daniel Jones is garbage. Saquon Barkley is overrated. The other guys on the team make David Tyree look skilled. Expecting a competent performance from the Giants in this game is highly optimistic.

"This means they have Nugent in and he's fine"

This won't get you very far at the actual game, but my grandparents danced together for the first time at Mike Nugent's grandparents' wedding.
posted by kevinbelt at 11:19 AM on October 7, 2019 [2 favorites]

Just watch Pats QB Brady. Even in this QB-protection era, it's amazing what he keeps on doing.

Contra to what other people have said, you should automatically hate all NY teams unless you have a compelling reason not to. This is, like, the #1 rule of being a U.S. pro sports fan. I say this as a resident of the great state of New York.
posted by praemunire at 12:55 PM on October 7, 2019 [2 favorites]

Whatever you do, your [misguided, but that's neither here nor there] fandom of the Eagles must remain a secret while at the game. Your personal safety is paramount.
posted by Everydayville at 1:07 PM on October 7, 2019 [1 favorite]

I forgot it was tonight and only remembered at the 4th quarter, looks like I missed all the trauma. Still, saw a sweet QB sneak and now 6-0. 😍
posted by TWinbrook8 at 9:55 PM on October 10, 2019

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