The New York Giants have appeared in five Super Bowls, winning four of those since the AFL/NFL merger. The first came on this date in 1987, when they dominated John Elway and the Denver Broncos at The Rose Bowl.
The three other Giants titles came in remarkably competitive games against the Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots (twice), while their one loss came following the 2000 season when they fell to Ray Lewis and the Baltimore Ravens.
Where do those five Super Bowls rank all-time? That’s open to an individual opinion, but those at USA TODAY believe three of them belong ranked among the 10 best Super Bowls of all-time.
Here’s a look at each of those three in reverse order:
10. XLVI (2011) Giants 21, Patriots 17: For the second time in five seasons, New York broke New England’s heart as Eli Manning completed another improbable throw — this time to Mario Manningham — before the Giants scored a late go-ahead TD and weathered the Patriots’ final drive.
Super Bowl XLVI was an amazing experience for Giants fans not only because they beat the then-undefeated Patriots four years earlier, but because no one believed Tom Brady could possibly lose to Eli Manning twice in the biggest game of their lives. And yet, he did. It was a game that cemented Manning’s legacy as one of the greatest Super Bowl quarterbacks of all-time.
8. XXV (1990) Giants 20, Buffalo Bills 19: New York played keepaway from Buffalo’s explosive K-Gun offense, holding the ball for nearly 41 minutes, and got nice efforts from MVP Ottis Anderson (102 yards, TD) and backup QB Jeff Hostetler. But the Giants only survived thanks to Scott Norwood’s wayward 47-yard field goal in the final seconds.
Super Bowl XXV had a different feel than just about any other title game in history because of all that was going on in the world. The Gulf War had just recently gotten underway, and the Big Game had military guard, including blackhawk helicopters flying overhead.
The game itself was an instant classic and arguably the closest game in Super Bowl history, having come down to the final second and was decided by a field goal that sailed wide by inches.
2. XLII (2007) New York Giants 17, Patriots 14: Arguably the biggest upset in Super Bowl history, the Giants derailed New England’s march to the still-elusive 19-0 campaign with an unrelenting pass rush, David Tyree’s miraculous helmet catch and Eli Manning’s MVP performance.
What more can be said about Super Bowl XLII? The fact that it checks in at No. 1 is easily debatable as it’s widely considered the greatest game in football history. After all, the Patriots were Goliath and the Giants were David. No one gave them a chance against the best team ever assembled, but that’s why they play the game.
Super Bowl XXI (Giants vs. Broncos) checked in at No. 22 overall, while Super Bowl XXV (Giants vs. Ravens) checked in at No. 50 overall.
Strangely, Super Bowl LI (Patriots vs. Falcons) topped the entire list and was named the greatest Super Bowl of all-time.