Defense wins championships

February 1, 2008

Much of the talk surrounding Super Bowl XLII has to do with the quarterbacks, New England’s Tom Brady and his counterpart, Eli Manning of the New York Giants. But there is an old saying that pertains to sports, not just football, and that is “defense wins championships”. It is here where the winner of Super Bowl XLII will be decided, as the Pats are 12-point favorites in the big game.

Both of these Super Bowl-contending teams were impressive on the defensive side of the ball, as the Patriots finished fourth in yards allowed per game, while the Giants were not far behind in seventh place. The Patriots’ strength comes in their ability to prevent teams from scoring in the red zone, as they were fourth in the NFL in points allowed with 17.1 points. Experience has a lot of do with this aspect of New England’s play, especially from their linebacking unit of Tedy Bruschi, Junior Seau and Mike Vrabel. Bruschi and Seau’s veteran leadership comes in handy when the Patriots have their backs against the wall, while Vrabel’s versatility makes him very hard for opposing coaches to plan for. Some analysts will say that the age of this trio is the Patriots’ weakness, but when a play needs to be made, chances are one of these three players are around the ball. For the Giants, their pass rush is what sparks their defensive crew. Defensive ends Michael Strahan and Osi Umeniyora combined for 22 sacks, while Justin Tuck contributed another ten sacks for the Giants.

There are many exciting prop bets available for Super Bowl XLII at, and there are more defense-based bets than in recent years. Just as an example, the New England defense is favored at -150 to record the first sack of the game, and they are also favored at -170 to rack up more sacks than the Giants. Meanwhile, New York is favored in a less-desirable category, as they come in at -150 to commit the game’s first turnover.

For more incredible Super Bowl props and odds, make your Super Bowl source.

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