Giants

Manning Stresses Leadership, Seizing Opportunities As G-Men Prepare For Falcons

Eli Manning (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Eli Manning (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (WFAN) - It all comes down to three games.

It was four last week, but the Giants came out on Sunday and demolished the Saints, 52-27, to remain atop the NFC East.

One down and three to go.

The Redskins and Cowboys also won, so New York remains just one game up in the division.

Although the win over Drew Brees and New Orleans was thoroughly impressive, these next two weeks will likely define the Giants’ season. Quarterback Eli Manning and company travel to Atlanta in Week 15 before heading to Baltimore to take on the Ravens. The Falcons, at 11-2, have already clinched the NFC South, and the Ravens sit atop the AFC North at 9-4.

The next two weeks will be a true test of how good these Giants really are, and Manning believes that the personnel on the roster is ready for the challenge.

“We do have some great leadership on this team,” Manning told WFAN host Mike Francesa in his weekly spot on Monday. “(We have) guys who understand the opportunity that we’re in, that we have good players, that we have a good team. As you get guys who have all of a sudden been in the NFL for six, seven, eight years, they understand, ‘Hey, you don’t have these opportunities very often.'”

The two-time Super Bowl MVP was superb in the Giants’ Week 14 win, completing 22 of 35 passes for 259 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions. He wasn’t sacked once all day.

Although he has two Super Bowl victories to his name and will likely be honored in Canton some day, the veteran quarterback struggled early on in his NFL career — as most young quarterbacks do — and he knows the importance of seizing the opportunity.

After all, chances to take home the Lombardi Trophy don’t come around very often.

“You get into the playoffs, and then you try to get hot and make a run,” the 31-year-old said. “That’s the goal. Guys understand that it’s tough, it’s hard to do that. And when you’re in this spot, when you’re in this position, you’ve got to take advantage of it because you don’t know if you’re going to get another chance. You don’t know what’s going to happen next year.

“You don’t know what players you’ll have or if you’ll be on a different team, or the circumstances with injuries. A lot of things can happen … It’s tough to make it and you’ve got to win big games, and at the end of the season you’ve got to be playing your best football and understand the importance of this.”

The Giants last played the Falcons in the playoffs last season, winning 24-2 in the NFC wildcard round at MetLife Stadium.

Which team do you think will be tougher for the Giants to beat — the Falcons or the Ravens? Sound off with your thoughts and comments below…