Giants kicker Lawrence Tynes (9) and punter Steve Weatherford (5) celebrate after Tynes kicked the game winning field goal, sending New York to the Super Bowl.

Giants kicker Lawrence Tynes (9) and punter Steve Weatherford (5) celebrate after Tynes kicked the game winning field goal, sending New York to the Super Bowl.

SAN FRANCISCO — The New York Giants have their own Super Bowl formula: in overtime and on the road.

And with Lawrence Tynes’ foot.

Eli Manning directed one short, final drive and Tynes kicked a game-winning 31-yard field goal in overtime, sending the Giants to the Super Bowl with a 20-17 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC championship game on Sunday.

In another tight one in this decades-old postseason rivalry, both defenses made key stops before New York capitalized on another costly mistake by San Francisco.

Manning and the Giants (12-7) will face the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl on Feb. 5 in Indianapolis as 3½-point underdogs. The last time the teams met for the NFL title, 2008, the Giants ended the Patriots’ bid for a perfect season.

Tynes had a hand, er, foot in getting the Giants to that one, too, kicking the game-winning field goal in overtime at Green Bay.

Devin Thomas put the Giants in position by recovering his second fumble of the game after Jacquian Williams stripped the ball from fill-in return man Kyle Williams, who also fumbled earlier to set up a New York touchdown.

“It’s my second NFC championship game, my second game-winner,” Tynes said. “It’s amazing. I had dreams about this last night. It was from 42, not 31, but I was so nervous today before the game just anticipating this kind of game. I’m usually pretty cool, but there was something about tonight where I knew I was going to have to make a kick. Hats off to Eli, offense, defense. Great win.”

Manning went 32 of 58 for 316 yards and two touchdowns in his record fifth road playoff win, New York’s fifth in a row overall and fifth out of six.

A 12-point underdog in the 2008 title game, the Giants battered Brady and got a late-minute TD pass from Manning to Plaxico Burress to win their third Super Bowl.

Five months after declaring he is in the same class as Tom Brady, Manning will get another chance to outdo Brady on the NFL’s biggest stage. He outplayed Aaron Rodgers and the defending champion Packers last week, then fellow former No. 1 pick Alex Smith and upstart San Francisco the next.

Victor Cruz set the tone with eight of his 10 receptions in the first half and finished with 142 yards

“It’s just been a tremendous effort by all of us, man,” Cruz said. “We understand that any one of us can get hot at any moment. As long as we’re all on the same page and just playing together, man, we’ve got a great group of guys.”

Vernon Davis caught touchdown passes of 73 and 28 yards and wound up with three catches for 112 yards for the NFC West champions (14-4), who went from 6-10 a year ago to a contender and ended an eight-year playoff drought.

He scored the game-winner from 14 yards out last week as the 49ers stunned Drew Brees and the favored Saints 36-32.

Thirty years after their dynasty began under the late Bill Walsh, another former Stanford coach — Jim Harbaugh — got the 49ers this far with his “Who’s got it better than us? No-body!” chant that caught on so well with the players and city.

“It will be a tough one. It will take a while to get over,” Harbaugh said.

The only other time these two franchises faced off in the conference championship the game finished in memorable fashion. On Jan. 20, 1991, Roger Craig fumbled with the 49ers leading 13-12 late in the fourth quarter and the Giants went on to win 15-13 to deny San Francisco a chance at a third straight Super Bowl title. New York then beat the Bills to capture its second Super Bowl.

These teams met six times in the playoffs between the 1981 and ’94 seasons with the winner going on to win the Super Bowl four times.

Comments

coachjohnson42 2 years, 10 months ago

The Albany Herald needs to be doing a special story on the journey of Deion Branch from right here Albany,Ga. He came from MONROE HIGH and made it to the NFL as a receiver in case you didn't know. I will admit they have "mentioned" the fact that he is on the NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS TEAM #84 in the past. Maybe a small section or two from time to time......But, this is the 2nd time he is going to the Superbowl and this is unprecedented. Nobody from any school here in SW Georgia has been in two Superbowls and won Superbowl MVP in 2007.What else does this kid have to prove? This will probably never be done again. You cant get any higher than winning a Superbowl and winning Superbowl MVP in one career and he is not done. So, come on Albany Herald......swallow your pride and embrace your own. This is an Albany Native....show him some love!!! We shouldn't have to ask.....

0

VSU 2 years, 10 months ago

Ha Coach....ironic you are accusing the Herald of discrediting Deion Branch, when you inadvertantly discredited him yourself by saying this would be his 2nd Super Bowl appearance when actually it will be his 3rd. Good thing you are not a herald sports writer. Deion Branch certainly deserves more newspaper stories than Tiger Woods. We need more role models like Branch. I know we don't always see eye to eye, but I will be joining you in wishing another super bowl ring for Deion Branch.

0

coachjohnson42 2 years, 10 months ago

hey, it was a slip...I was thinking of Superbowl Championships....which is two, not appearances, which is 3.......After they beat the NY Giants, he will have 2 rings, 3 appearances.....there....ya happy now????

0

dannyaller 2 years, 10 months ago

@Coachjohnson24 ....

Swallow our pride? Seriously?

Not only did we do a story in Sunday's paper --- not sure how you missed it (http://www.albanyherald.com/news/2012/jan/22/albanys-branch-pats-have-been-overlooked-all-year/?sports) --- but we did a story two weeks ago and have featured Deion prominently every time he's caught a TD or had a big game this year. He's only had five scores and is the No. 4 receiver on the team, so he hasn't had the kind of season he's had in past seasons, but nonetheless, no one at The Albany Herald has forgotten about him. Trust me.

As for your request to have a story done on him before the Super Bowl? The game ended about 24 hours ago and there's plenty of plans to do more than ONE story on him in the next two weeks before the game. So don't worry .... you don't have to ask.

Also, this is Deion's third Super Bowl. Not his second.

0

coachjohnson42 2 years, 10 months ago

Thanks for the correction.....Now do a FULL PAGE COLOR STORY on his journey and dedicate the entire sports section to his legacy. Headline, ALBANY'S OWN MAKES SUPERBOWL HISTORY (AGAIN). Giving special respect to his high school coaches at MONROE HIGH, ,his college career, his parents, family, and friends. It should be a front page story, however, I understand you have more important stories to put out there on the front page that have just been "eye popping" lately........Albany will be happy to know the Albany Herald cares about its own. I challenge you find another Albany native or a sports legend from SW Georgia who has accomplished more in professional sports. THREE Superbowl appearances is UNBELIEVABLE.....

0

Abytaxpayer 2 years, 10 months ago

@danny Thanks for the stories the Herald has done and the additional stories it appears the Herald has plans for. Not to defend coach (the sky may fall) but Deion Branch really does deserve a lot of attention not just from the Herald but from All of Albany. Deion Branch is a living example of where determination, hard work, and a little gift of outstanding athletics can get you. Deion Branch is and should be held up as a role model to the youth of Albany, his life is one more kids in Albany can see as attainable for themselves if they just try as hard as he did. Deion Branch deserves more attention because he grew and developed his skills here unlike some who have a park and statue just for being born here.

0

coachjohnson42 2 years, 10 months ago

In comparison to the coverage of Lee County's Buster Posey.......I needed to speak up for Deion Branch...we are proud of Buster too, but dang.....The Herald ran outta ink writing stories about him.....talk about over-exposure...geez!!!

0

The_Dude 2 years, 10 months ago

Mr. Posey was a top 5 pick, one of the best college catchers ever to play the game, and started for a MLB team before 23. That deserves some ink. Mr. Branch is a fine player, but has ridden the coattails of a certain QB for a long time. What did he do in Seattle? Not much. Go Giants.

0

coachjohnson42 2 years, 10 months ago

Mr. Posey is decent, but not a top 5 pick of today. We love him over here in Lee County but he road the coattails of a great baseball team period.(coach,pitchers, and team-mates) He was over-exposed and over-rated. This added pressure on him to perform. He didn't ask for all that publicity because he is a humble man. Deion Branch is also a humble man who does not brag, trash talk,or show off during games. He did well in New England, and later Seattle (even though they had a weak QB in Seattle) and thats why Brady wanted him back. Brady knows he needed Deion to get back to the Superbowl. Deion is a Superbowl MVP...he doesn't have to prove anything to you my friend. Did Buster win MVP? Noooooooo......

0

Sister_Ruby 2 years, 10 months ago

There sure are a lot of WHITE players on these two super bowl teams. I wonder why? There must be some kind of SNAFU at work here. It's not supposed to work out like this!

0

coachjohnson42 2 years, 10 months ago

Says who? That's a ignorant statement Sister Ruby....Every Superbowl we have ever had has had white players on it. What in the world are you talking about?

0

VSU 2 years, 10 months ago

It's the teamwork of white, black, hispancis, samoans etc that work together that takes any team to the super bowl.

0

coachjohnson42 2 years, 10 months ago

Thats true VSU.....Tom Brady (white) throws touchdowns to Deion Branch (Black). Ebony and Ivory live together in perfect harmony........Roger Staubach (white) threw touchdowns to Drew Pearson (Black) and the list goes on and on....Ebony and Ivory live together in perfect harmony.......

0

VSU 2 years, 10 months ago

Truthfuly, I don't pay attention to what race they are. Of course I know who is who, but all I pay attention to is players on the field playing and root for them no matter what or who they are. I see men in helmets and jerseys clashing.

0

coachjohnson42 2 years, 10 months ago

Me too.....Go Pats!!! Blacks and Whites kicking butt together....

0

Sign in to comment