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Giants' Manning looking for better result against Falcons

Oct 10, 2006 - 10:59 PM NY Giants (2-2) at Atlanta (3-1) Sunday 1:00 pm EDT

ATLANTA (Ticker) - Eli Manning made his first NFL start two years ago against the Atlanta Falcons. He hopes for a better result this time around when the New York Giants visit the Georgia Dome.

Michael Vick stole the show in Manning's first start on November 21, 2004, hitting tight end Alge Crumpler with a pair of touchdown passes and running for 104 yards as the Falcons posted a 14-10 victory at Giants Stadium.

Manning, the No. 1 overall pick in 2004, completed just 17-of-37 passes for 167 yards and a touchdown and was intercepted twice.

Vick, the No. 1 overall pick in 2001, threw for just 114 yards but hurt the Giants with his legs.

"Preparing for him (Vick) is different than preparing for any team you're going to face," Giants coach Tom Coughlin said. "No other quarterback is even close to being as fast as Vick is. So he can beat you in a variety of ways."

Vick has rushed for 333 yards on 38 carries this season. However, he has completed just 45-of-90 passes for 522 yards, three touchdowns with two interceptions.

Giants defensive ends Michael Strahan and Osi Umenyiora have to be more disciplined in their rush of Vick, who is known for escaping the rush and dashing to the outside.

Manning is strictly a pocket quarterback. He has a passer rating of 97.1, completing 98-of-146 passes for 1,149 yards, nine touchdowns and five interceptions.

On defense, Atlanta has been overshadowed by Chicago, which has yielded just 36 points in five games. But the Falcons have surrendered just 42 points in four games, second in the NFC.

And the Falcons have played the last three games without three-time Pro Bowl defensive end John Abraham, who has been bothered by a groin injury. Abraham had two sacks and two forced fumbles in a season-opening win at Carolina.

The Giants allowed 92 points in their first three games before using the bye week to fix their problems. Coughlin and defensive coordinator Tim Lewis addressed some communication problems that existed with three new starters in the secondary, and the Giants limited Mark Brunell to just 109 passing yards in last week's 19-3 win over Washington.

The Falcons have led the NFL in rushing the last two years and are at the head of the class again, primarily due to Vick and Warrick Dunn, who has rushed for 365 yards in four games.

The Giants will rely on Tiki Barber, who rushed for a season-high 123 yards vs. Washington. It was only the second 100-yard game of the season for Barber, who ran for 1,860 yards in 2005.

Giants tight end Jeremy Shockey is listed as questionable with an ankle injury. He caught just one pass last week against Washington.

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