For the first time since 1990, the New York Giants are the reigning Super Bowl champions. Their thrilling victory over the 18-0 New England Patriots is already being called one of the greatest football games every played. Even casual football fans found themselves following the ups and downs of Big Blue last season, so we thought now would be a good time to educate new fans about New York Giants history and trivia.
The New York Giants -- The Early Years
It all started when bookie Tim Mara bought the New York Giants in 1925 for a whopping $500 and then almost went bankrupt when they lost their first three games. Six years later, Mara passed team ownership to his sons Jack and Wellington. Wellington, who was 14 at the time, co-owned the team until he passed away in 2005.
In their early years, the Giants played their home games at the Polo Grounds, Yankee Stadium and even the Yale University campus (1973-1974), before moving into their current home in 1976. It was there – in Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey -- that they put together three Super Bowl champion teams.
The Modern Era
The team’s first Super Bowl victory came in 1986. After finishing in last place or next-to-last place eight times in the 1970s, the Giants began to transform into a winning team after drafting quarterback Phil Simms in 1979 and linebacker Lawrence Taylor in 1981.
Once Bill Parcels took over as coach in 1983, it took only three years for the team to put together a 14–2 record. After defeating the San Francisco 49ers and Washington Redskins by a combined score of 66–3 in the playoffs, the Giants advanced to Super Bowl XXI where they beat the Denver Broncos, 39–20.
With Simms and Taylor still in the prime of their careers, the Giants were able to post a 13-3 record in 1990 and go on to defeat the Buffalo Bills 20-19 in dramatic fashion in Super Bowl XXV. One of the most memorable Super Bowl moments ever occurred when Bills kicker Scott Norwood missed a 47-yard field goal attempt at the end of the game, giving the New York Giants their second Super Bowl championship.
After years of coaching changes, quarterback controversies, and failing to live up to expectations, it looked like the 2007 season would be another disappointment after the Giants started out the season with a 0-2 record. But the team rallied to finish 10-6 and became NFC champions after defeating the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dallas Cowboys, and Green Bay Packers in the playoffs. The Giants set the record for the most consecutive road wins, which currently stands at 11.
Although the undefeated New England Patriots entered Super Bowl XLII as 12-point favorites, the Giants came through with one of the biggest upsets in the history of the game. Quarterback Eli Manning was named the game's Most Valuable Player in the team’s 17-14 victory.
Stadium Information / Seat Licenses
Although all games are sold out for the upcoming season, if you were lucky enough to score some tickets, you can visit the Meadowlands website for directions, parking information, and stadium policies.
The Giants were criticized by many long-time season ticket holders this summer when they announced that fans would have to purchase seat licenses in the team’s new stadium -- forking over one-time fees that start at $1,000 each for 26,179 upper-deck seats and rise to $20,000 for one of 4,162 lower-level field seats. The Giants are selling licenses to every seat in the $1.6 billion stadium they are building with the Jets. This strategy will generate about $367 million if they sell all the licenses. The new stadium is scheduled to open in East Rutherford, New Jersey in 2010.
Current Notable New York Giants
Eli Manning (Quarterback)
Brandon Jacobs (Running Back)
Ahmad Bradshaw (Running Back)
Brandon Jacobs (Running Back)
Plaxico Burress (Wide Receiver)
Sinorice Moss (Wide Receiver)
Steve Smith (Wide Receiver)
Amani Toomer (Wide Receiver)
David Tyree (Wide Receiver)
Kevin Boss (Tight End)
Shaun O'Hara (Center)
Mathias Kiwanuka (Linebacker)
Antonio Pierce (Linebacker)
Justin Tuck (Defensive End)
Osi Umenyiora (Defensive End)
Sam Madison (Cornerback)
R. W. McQuarters (Cornerback)
Jeff Feagles (Punter)
Lawrence Tynes (Kicker)
New York Giants Hall Of Famers
Tim Mara (Founder - No College - Enshrined in 1963)
Mel Hein (Center - Washington St. - Enshrined in 1963)
Cal Hubbard (Tackle - Geneva - Enshrined in 1963)
Steve Owen (Coach - Phillips University - Enshrined in 1966)
Ken Strong (Halfback - New York University - Enshrined 1967)
Emlen Tunnell (Defensive Back, Toledo/Iowa - Enshrined 1967)
Vince Lombardi (Coach - Fordham - Enshrined in 1971)
Andy Robustelli (Defensive End - Arnold College - Enshrined in 1971)
Y.A. Tittle (Quarterback - Louisiana St. - Enshrined in 1971)
Roosevelt Brown (Tackle - Morgan St. - Enshrined in 1975)
Frank Gifford (Halfback, Flanker - S. California - Enshrined in 1977)
Alphonse Leemans (Halfback, Fullback - GW/Oregon - Enshrined in 1978)
Morris (Red) Badgro (End - Southern California - Enshrined in 1981)
Sam Huff (Linebacker - W. Virginia - Enshrined in 1982)
Arnold Weinmeister (Defensive Tackle - Washington - Enshrined 1984)
Tom Landry (Coach - Texas - Enshrined in 1990)
Wellington Mara (Co-Owner - Fordham - Enshrined in 1997)
Lawrence Taylor (Linebacker - North Carolina - Enshrined in 1999)
Benny Friedman (Quarterback - Michigan - Enshrined in 2005)
Harry Carson (Linebacker - South Carolina State - Enshrined in 2006)
NFL MVP Award Winners
Mel Hein (1938)
Frank Gifford (1956)
Charlie Conerly (1959)
Y.A. Tittle (1963)
Lawrence Taylor (1986)
New York Giants Trivia
1) Who was the New York Giants' opponent in their very first home game?
2) Who was named the MVP in the team’s Super Bowl XXV victory over the Buffalo Bills?
3) In the 2008 NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers, whose interception set up Lawrence Tynes' game-winning field goal?
4) Y.A. Tittle’s initials stood for what?
5) Which current Giant was once a national semifinalist in the 400-meter hurdles?
1) Frankford Yellow Jackets
2) Ottis Andersen
3) Corey Webster
4) Yelberton Abraham
5) Plaxico Burress