ESPN Patriots-Giants prediction roundup

A roundup of how ESPN's analysts see Sunday’s Patriots-Giants Super Bowl playing out.

PatriotsGiants* ESPNBoston.com’s Mike Reiss: Patriots 30, Giants 20. This reminds me of the Nov. 13 game at the Jets, a contest in which many predicted trouble for the Patriots but the team came through. I think they do it again. While there is respect for the Giants’ pass rush, it’s not like opponents have been completely shut down by the unit. I expect some points from a faster-paced attack and quarterback Tom Brady to play better and limit mistakes. On the opposite side, the improved defense limits the run and forces Eli Manning into some long-yardage situations and that’s when the Patriots can dial up some pressure. Promises to be a good one.

* ESPNBoston.com Patriots analyst Tedy Bruschi: Patriots 27, Giants 24. I see this game going down to the wire. Both of these teams are playing great football. There are matchup advantages for both teams in all three phases. In the end, I see New England winning. Throughout this year there have been breakout players that have established themselves as championship caliber -- Gronkowski, Hernandez, Spikes, Mayo, Chung, just to name a few. Stephen Gostkowski will add his name to the list. Adam Vinatieri will no longer be the only Patriots kicker to say he kicked a game-winner with a world championship on the line. It's good.

* ESPNBoston.com columnist Jackie MacMullan: Patriots 27, Giants 24. Is there any doubt this game goes down to the final two minutes?

* ESPNBoston.com’s Mike Rodak: Patriots 27, Giants 24. Another Super Bowl classic for the Patriots. It's a back-and-forth contest that will yet again test the Patriots' mettle. Tom Brady will be hit, pressured, and will probably throw an interception or two. This game will be decided by the Patriots' defense, and their ability to stop Eli Manning when it counts most. Some way, somehow -- just as this season has gone -- the Patriots will come out on top.

* ESPNBoston.com’s Chris Forsberg: Patriots 17, Giants 14. New England's Revenge Tour 2011 crescendos with tight end Rob Gronkowski making some sort of ridiculous touchdown grab that's one part Tyree and another part Schilling's bloody sock, sending New England into dizzying euphoria and exorcising some demons from Super Bowl XLII. No leaving the field early for Belichick this time around. No, the only thing that'll tear him away from this celebration is submitting the paperwork to rename his boat VI Rings.

* ESPNBoston.com’s Steven Krasner: Giants 17, Patriots 14. The injury to Gronkowski makes the difference. Even if he can play, his mobility and strength will be compromised, helping the Giants defense in what should be a tight, exciting game.

* ESPN Boston Radio’s Adam Jones: Patriots 24, Giants 20. Tom Brady vs. Eli Manning. It's a debate nationally right now. By Monday, it won't be ...

* ESPN Boston Radio’s Andrew Brooks: Patriots 31, Giants 23. The Patriots don't want to talk about revenge because this is a new team and it brings back bad memories, but that's exactly what this game is all about. It's not a regular season game either, this is revenge at its finest for the Patriots. It starts with Belichick, who obviously has a history with Coughlin, and doesn't need to trickle down any further than Tom Brady, who is tired of hearing about Eli Manning (and other inferior QBs). Patriots take the opening possession to the house for a TD and never look back.

* ESPNNewYork.com columnist Ian O'Connor: Giants 34, Patriots 24. Four years ago, the Giants' pass rush negated the talent difference between Tom Brady and Eli Manning. This time around, the pass rush is just as fierce, and there is no discernible talent difference between Brady and Manning. No David Tyree required in the rematch.

* More picks from ESPNNewYork.com:


* ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter: Patriots 27, Giants 16. The Giants are the better and more complete team. But they also have to figure out a way to beat Bill Belichick, Tom Brady and the memory of Myra Kraft.

* ESPN NFL analyst Eric Mangini: Patriots 34, Giants 31. The Giants have become the trendy pick and I understand why. Tom Brady, however, is going to have better answers to the problems New York can create and he will take advantage of the Giants’ inconsistent disguise. Both teams will score a lot of points and it will probably come down to who has the ball last.

* ESPN senior NFL writer John Clayton: Patriots 24, Giants 20. It's hard to beat Tom Brady three times in a row at his game of comeback football in the fourth quarter. Although I worry about the Patriots' defense, I think Brady and Bill Belichick will find a way to squeak out a victory.

* ESPN.com NFL columnist Ashley Fox: Giants 27, Patriots 24. The Giants are on a Packers-esque roll, and the Patriots haven't lit the playoffs on fire. Eli Manning will torch the New England secondary to get his second ring in big brother's house.

* ESPN NFL analyst Jon Gruden: Patriots 30, Giants 27. I don't think you can get Tom Brady twice in the same game.

* Granland's Bill Simmons: Patriots 24, Giants 19.

* Grantland's Bill Barnwell: Patriots 27, Giants 23. In a year where there was no truly great team, the Super Bowl might end up coming down to who does a better job of hiding their weaknesses. The Patriots will need to dredge up an ambulatory pass rush, while the Giants will need each member of their secondary to keep up while remembering how to run the ball in the case that they do get a lead. The game should resemble the second half of the Week 9 contest between these two teams, with a mix of impressive offense and occasionally sloppy play on both sides of the football. Well, resemble it in most ways.

* ESPN experts: 28 of the 63 eight experts picked the Patriots. 35 pick the Giants.

* Sunday NFL Countdown: Mike Ditka, Keyshawn Johnson, Cris Carter and Tom Jackson all pick the Giants.

* Madden simulation: Giants 27, Patriots 24. Kicker Lawrence Tynes kicked a game-winning 40-yard field goal as time expired to lift the Giants past the AFC Champion Patriots, bringing home the Giants' second Super Bowl championship in four years. Giants Quarterback Eli Manning was named the game's MVP, completing 25 of 39 passes with two touchdowns and an interception. New England's Tom Brady also had a big day, throwing for 327 yards and three touchdowns with one interception. Most of Brady's best moments came late in the game. Trailing 24-10 with less than 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, Brady led New England on a furious rally, scoring two touchdowns to tie the game 24-24, the second coming on a 14-yard pass to wide receiver Wes Welker with 1:50 left on the clock.

* AccuScore simulations: Patriots 31, Giants 29 (average of more than 10,000 simulations). Click HERE to simulate the game yourself.

* Matt Williamson, Scouts Inc. (Insider): Giants 28, Patriots 24.

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* What's your prediction for Patriots-Giants? Leave it in the comments section of this blog post.