shortly after Ryan was stuffed on a fourth-down sneak from the New York 24. The other fourth-down failure came in the third quarter at the New York 21 with the Giants ahead 10-2. Ryan again was stopped.
Ryan blamed himself for choosing the wrong hole. His linemen took the blame.
“It’s disappointing when you have fourth-and-one and can’t get it done on short yardage,” tackle Will Svitek said.
The win was the Giants’ first postseason victory since their Super Bowl upset of undefeated New England four years ago.
Next up is the Packers, who beat the Giants here 38-35 in December.
“We know they are a good team,” Manning said. “We played them tough here, did some good things here, we scored some points. We know offensively we are going to have to play strong, score some points.”
Manning hooked up on a 72-yard catch and run by Hakeem Nicks in the third quarter that put away the inept Falcons. Manning also connected on a 4-yard TD with Nicks in the second period, and a 27-yard TD throw to Mario Manningham in the fourth quarter that finished it off.
The tempo in the first playoff game at MetLife Stadium was set by New York’s defense, which never allowed Atlanta to get going, and by the league’s lowest-ranked rushing game, which ran for a season-high 172 yards – 92 by Brandon Jacobs and 63 by Ahmad Brad
For all of Jacobs’ and Bradshaw’s success, it was Manning’s escape and 14-yard dash on third down in the second period that got the Giants rolling. Jacobs soon broke a 34-yard run.
The Giants never really had to look back as they held the Falcons to 64 yards rushing.