The Giants defensive line will wreak havoc on the Patriots offensive line. That's a generally accepted fact on how the Giants are expected to slow down the Patriots potent passing attack. The last time these two teams squared off in Week 9, the Giants sacked quarterback Tom Brady twice, allowed two hits, and gave up nine pressures.
In the pre-season game between these two teams, the Giants managed to sack Patriots quarterbacks an astonishing eight times. In the Super Bowl between these two teams? The Giants notched 5 sacks and the Patriots offense was never able to find its groove.
A lot of people are expecting the same approach by the Giants: Pressure Brady and the Patriots offense will crumble. I think the storyline should be a little different. I expect the Patriots to win the trench battle in the Super Bowl.
In the Patriots four playoff games prior to this season, the Patriots offensive line turned into sieves and couldn't stop a wet paperbag.
'07 San Diego Chargers - 2 Sacks
'07 New York Giants - 5 Sacks
'09 Baltimore Ravens - 3 Sacks
'10 New York Jets - 5 Sacks
Now all of those teams featured prominent pass rushers, from Michael Strahan to Terrell Suggs. The Patriots offensive line was completely dominated and their defensive counterpart was unable to generate any type of pressure (4 total sacks in the same four games, with 3 sacks coming in the Giants Super Bowl).
This season seems to be different. The Giants are coming off of a 6-sacks-allowed performance where their offensive line was unable to sustain their blocks. The Patriots? They've allowed one (1) sack in these playoffs and held vaunted pass rushers like Von Miller, Elvis Dumervil, and Terrell Suggs to a total of 2 QB hits and 5 QB pressures. That's extraordinary production.
On the other side of the football, the Patriots defense has been able to dial up the pressure on opposing quarterbacks with eight sacks against the Broncos and the Ravens- and this is a defense that combined for 0 sacks in their prior two playoff games.
The Patriots trenchmen are playing complimentary football at the perfect time. If they put together one more solid performance, the Patriots could be well on their way to another Super Bowl victory.