Commentary

Predicting Super Bowl XLVI

Breaking down the game, plus which way the prop bets should go

Originally Published: January 31, 2012
By Nik Bonaddio and Keith Goldner | numberFire
New England Patriots, New York GiantsAP Photo/Winslow TownsonSuper Bowl XLVI is inching closer by the day. Can the Giants pull off another upset?

Although media drama dominates right now heading into a Super Bowl rematch between the New York Giants and New England Patriots, many of you are more concerned with predicting the matchup (and the props). Us, too, so let's dive in.

Offense

By now, everyone knows the Patriots have an edge on offense, with their No. 2 opponent-adjusted passing attack and No. 6 opponent-adjusted running game. The effective passing does wonders for the rushing game despite what conventional statistics might indicate: Although they rank just 20th in rushing yards, the Patriots know when to run, and, when they do, they do it efficiently. Their 47 percent run success rate is phenomenal, third in the NFL behind only the Philadelphia Eagles and New Orleans Saints. The Giants, on the other hand, have the 30th-ranked success rate, a mundane 37 percent.

Eli Manning has been leading a dominant Giants passing attack that includes two of the most efficient receivers in the league. The Giants rank sixth in the league after adjusting for the strength of opposing pass defenses, and they'll need every yard they can scrounge up against the high-flying Patriots.

As good as the Giants are, though, the Patriots are simply much, much better.