Giants
Bills
38 - 21 Final
  for this game

Jacobs, Giants rumble to playoffs with win over Bills

Dec 24, 2007 - 4:33 AM ORCHARD PARK, New York (Ticker) -- Eli Manning could not handle the elements for the second time in as many weeks. So Brandon Jacobs and the New York Giants ran their way into the playoffs.

Jacobs rushed for two touchdowns and linebacker Kawika Mitchell returned an interception for the go-ahead score Sunday as the Giants clinched a postseason berth with a 38-21 victory over the feisty Buffalo Bills.

It was the franchise-record seventh straight road win for New York (10-5), which rallied from a 14-0 first-quarter deficit to secure the No. 5 seed in the upcoming NFC playoffs.

"It means a lot - it will be three years in a row for me and for this team going to the playoffs," Jacobs said. "We just have to get over that one-game slump and take it a little further."

The Giants' come-from-behind win seemed improbable on a day when the Bills (7-8) were inspired by the return of Kevin Everett, who made his first appearance in Buffalo since suffering a near-fatal spinal cord injury in the season opener on September 9.

Everett, who began walking on his own recently, addressed the Bills prior to the game and watched the contest from a suite at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

"It was absolutely great to see Kevin and have him back with out football team," Bills coach Dick Jauron said. "He has been a part of our team and will continue to be a part of our team."

The Giants have reached the postseason each of the last three seasons under embattled coach Tom Coughlin, whose job security has come into question over the last 12 months.

"We played our way through some adversity," Coughlin said. "I was glad to see us get our 10th win and secure our spot in the playoffs."

Coughlin again found himself on the hot seat this week courtesy of Manning, who tossed 35 incompletions in last week's 22-10 loss to the Washington Redskins - a performance severely affected by windy conditions at Giants Stadium.

Mother Nature once again played a crucial role, as heavy wind, rain and snow plagued the field conditions Sunday.

"It was probably worse (than last week)," Manning said. "The wind wasn't as bad, but the rain always makes it tough. When you combine wind, rain and eventually snow, it doesn't make for an easy day throwing the ball."

Unable to deal with the weather, Manning nearly cost the Giants a chance at the lead when he lost a fumbled snap on the first play of the fourth quarter.

But New York took a 24-21 lead two plays later when Mitchell intercepted Trent Edwards at the Buffalo 20-yard line and returned it for his third career TD.

"We needed a boost, and (Mitchell) gave it to us," Coughlin said. "We had an opportunity for Kawika to come right back following some disappointing play on the offensive end."

Edwards' pass should have been a completion to Lee Evans, who had the ball bounce off his shoulder pad and into the arms of Mitchell.

"It was just one of those things where it was hard to grab the ball," Evans said. "You try try to get as much body on it as you can, but it just got away."

Prior to Mitchell's heroics, Jacobs kept the inconsistent Giants in the contest with several bruising runs.

The 264-pound Jacobs finished with a career-high 145 yards on 20 carries and rumbled for a pair of second-quarter TD runs to help New York forge a 14-14 tie.

"We knew what we had to do," Jacobs said. "We knew the wind was going to be blowing and it was going to be a little rainy. So that is what you do in conditions like that - you run the ball."

Hampered by a sprained left ankle in the second half, Jacobs gave way to speedy rookie Ahmad Bradshaw, who provided a spark by rushing for a season-high 151 yards and a TD.

A seventh-round draft selection this past spring, Bradshaw essentially sealed New York's win with an 88-yard scoring run to make it 31-21 with 6:12 remaining.

"Right before (Bradshaw) ran it, he said, 'I'm gonna take it to the house and end this game,'" Manning said.

Giants cornerback Corey Webster made it 38-21 just 22 seconds later, intercepting Edwards and returning it for a 34-yard TD.

The Giants finished with 291 rushing yards to offset an awful performance by Manning, who fumbled five times - losing two - and completed 7-of-15 passes for 111 yards and two interceptions.

It was New York's highest single-game rushing total since a 351-yard performance on November 29, 1959.

"We were going to put the ball on the ground and have success," Coughlin said. "We didn't get ourselves into a situation where we felt like we had to do anything but run the ball."

Edwards was equally brutal, going 9-for-26 for 161 yards, two TDs and three interceptions. Fellow rookie Marshawn Lynch rushed for 70 yards and a score for the Bills (7-8).

Buffalo appeared headed toward a romp after taking a 14-0 lead just 9 1/2 minutes into the contest.

The Bills opened the game with a seven-play, 70-yard drive capped by Edwards' 3-yard TD to tight end Michael Gaines. Buffalo doubled its lead when Edwards found tight end Robert Royal for a 4-yard score with 5:31 remaining in the first quarter.

But the Giants battled back thanks to Jacobs, who ran for TDs of 6 and 43 yards in the second quarter.

Lawrence Tynes drilled a 42-yard field goal to give New York a 17-14 halftime advantage, but Buffalo reclaimed the lead just 66 seconds into the third quarter on Lynch's 3-yard TD run.






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    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 5:15 PM


  • NFL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NY GIANTS 0 17 0 21 38
    BUFFALO 14 0 7 0 21 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: BUF - TD, MICHAEL GAINES 3 YD PASS FROM TRENT
    EDWARDS (RIAN LINDELL KICK), 4:36.
    Drive: 7 plays, 60 yards in 4:36.
    Key plays: Edwards 21-yard pass to
    Reed to New York 39; Edwards
    30-yard pas

    Dec 23 4:14 PM


  • NFL
    TD NYG
    COREY WEBSTER 34 YD INTERCEPTION RETURN
    (LAWRENCE TYNES KICK)
    NY GIANTS 38
    BUFFALO 21 5:50 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 4:00 PM


  • NFL
    TD NYG
    AHMAD BRADSHAW 88 YD RUN
    (LAWRENCE TYNES KICK)
    NY GIANTS 31
    BUFFALO 21 6:12 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 3:56 PM
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    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 3:52 PM


  • NFL
    TD NYG
    KAWIKA MITCHELL 20 YD INTERCEPTION RETURN
    (LAWRENCE TYNES KICK)
    NY GIANTS 24
    BUFFALO 21 14:05 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 3:33 PM


  • NFL
    END, 3RD QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NY GIANTS 0 17 0 17
    BUFFALO 14 0 7 21 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: BUF - TD, MICHAEL GAINES 3 YD PASS FROM TRENT
    EDWARDS (RIAN LINDELL KICK), 4:36.
    Drive: 7 plays, 60 yards in 4:36.
    Key plays: Edwards 21-yard pass to
    Reed to New York 39; Edwards
    30-y

    Dec 23 3:25 PM
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    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 2:56 PM


  • NFL
    TD BUF
    MARSHAWN LYNCH 3 YD RUN
    (RIAN LINDELL KICK)
    NY GIANTS 17
    BUFFALO 21 13:54 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 2:55 PM


  • NFL
    HALFTIME 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NY GIANTS 0 17 17
    BUFFALO 14 0 14 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: BUF - TD, MICHAEL GAINES 3 YD PASS FROM TRENT
    EDWARDS (RIAN LINDELL KICK), 4:36.
    Drive: 7 plays, 60 yards in 4:36.
    Key plays: Edwards 21-yard pass to
    Reed to New York 39; Edwards
    30-yard

    Dec 23 2:37 PM


  • NFL
    FG NYG
    LAWRENCE TYNES 42 YD
    NY GIANTS 17
    BUFFALO 14 2:35 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 2:19 PM


  • NFL
    TD NYG
    BRANDON JACOBS 43 YD RUN
    (LAWRENCE TYNES KICK)
    NY GIANTS 14
    BUFFALO 14 8:32 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 2:08 PM


  • NFL
    TD NYG
    BRANDON JACOBS 6 YD RUN
    (LAWRENCE TYNES KICK)
    NY GIANTS 7
    BUFFALO 14 11:38 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 1:53 PM


  • NFL
    END, 1ST QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NY GIANTS 0 0
    BUFFALO 14 14 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: BUF - TD, MICHAEL GAINES 3 YD PASS FROM TRENT
    EDWARDS (RIAN LINDELL KICK), 4:36.
    Drive: 7 plays, 60 yards in 4:36.
    Key plays: Edwards 21-yard pass to
    Reed to New York 39; Edwards
    30-y

    Dec 23 1:43 PM


  • NFL
    TD BUF
    LEE EVANS 4 YD PASS FROM TRENT EDWARDS
    (RIAN LINDELL KICK)
    NY GIANTS 0
    BUFFALO 14 5:31 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 1:23 PM


  • NFL
    TD BUF
    MICHAEL GAINES 3 YD PASS FROM TRENT EDWARDS
    (RIAN LINDELL KICK)
    NY GIANTS 0
    BUFFALO 7 10:24 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Giants vs. BillsDec 23 1:10 PM
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