Originally posted on Ultimate NYG  |  Last updated 1/21/12

WHEN SF HAS THE BALL

8 man box.  Put pressure on Alex Smith to beat you.  Where?  On the outside.  He is most comfortable with the inside passes, ie a crossing route or seam pass.  Make him make the harder and more precise throw to the edge of the field.  If he is able to make a perfect throw deep and out, it may be a big play, but make him earn that.  New Orleans gave him inside throws and Smith had a good day. 

It is the reverse for the SF running game.  Take away the edge and maintain the lane discipline.  Iupati likes to pull to spring those edge runs.

Who is the one player that is dynamic in the offense?  Vernon Davis.  Bracket him.  I'll take my chances with Webster in 1 on 1 vs Crabtree.  And as noted this week, without Braylon Edwards, I am comfortable with Ross in 1 on 1 also, with maybe some deep help from Phillips if required.     

WHEN NY HAS THE BALL

With a strong chance of rain, a sloppy field and wind, this dynamic may very well put the CB at a disadvantage.  Considering that Eli has the better WRs, this could/should help the Giants more than it will hurt the Giants CBs.  Imagine the slippery Cruz on a slippery field!  As Coughlin has noted, Cruz will make you pay if you take the wrong angle, and we could have some wrong angles and slips by defenders.  Nicks is crafty with a nose for the endzone too.  And Manningham has some of the quickest breaks in his route of anyone in the NFL, so he can lose a defender too.

The strength of the 49ers is their inside game.  Willis.  Justin Smith.  Bowman.  Don't bother trying to go crazy running in between the tackles.  Use Bradshaw on the edge with flares and screens (although I have completely given up w Gilbride on the screen).  Use Bradshaw on the checkdown.  Eli should have success with max protect plays because if he has 7 men blocking and his 3 WRs out there with defenders slipping, he should be able to find someone.  If Ballard is at all effective, use him on delayed routes outside (not inside where the LBers are).

SUMMARY

This is the Giants' game to win.  On defense, the Giants should defend the inside of the field on passes and the outside on runs.  Load the box against Smith and make him beat you.  Focus on Vernon Davis, as I do not believe the WRs/QB of SF are good enough to beat the Giants.  On offense, a slippery field should give Nicks, Manningham and Cruz an advantage.  Get Bradshaw open in space.  Use Pascoe and Beckum in the red zone.  60 minutes! 

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