Samuel, Falcons have a history with Eli Manning

FLOWERY BRANCH — Cornerback Asante Samuel and the Falcons have some history with the New York Giants and quarterback Eli Manning. And it isn’t pleasant.

Samuel and his new team will get a chance to exorcise some of those demons when the Falcons (11-2) face the Giants (8-5) at 1 p.m. Sunday at the Georgia Dome.

Samuel, while starring for New England, and Manning crossed paths five seasons ago in Super Bowl XLII. Samuel dropped an cinch interception that could have virtually ended the game and preserved New England’s perfect season. Instead they famously finished 18-1.

On the next play, Manning connected with David Tyree on his ridiculous ball-on-the-helmet catch and the Giants took home the Lombardi Trophy. Samuel has never shied away from the misplay.

“I didn’t make a play that could have easily ended the game,” Samuel said at the time.

More recently, it was Manning who eliminated the Falcons from the playoffs last season in the wild card round. The most painful dagger he landed in that day was a pass to Hakeem Nicks, who weaved his way through the secondary on his way to a 72-yard touchdown.

The Giants won 24-2 and went on to win another Super Bowl.

Samuel and Manning share more history. After he signed with the Eagles as a free agent, he faced Manning twice a season in the NFC East for four seasons.

Samuel has been more than willing to share information he has accumulated on Manning with his new Atlanta teammates.

“Just a couple of tendencies and tips that I know from playing against him two times a year,” said Samuel, who has three career interceptions and 10 passes defensed against Manning.

The Giants are averaging 256.5 passing yards per game, which ranks ninth in the league. Manning has dangerous weapons in Nicks and the Salsa-dancing Victor Cruz. Slowing down the passing attack would be vital to a Falcons’ victory.

Manning knows that Samuel will be ready for the challenge.

“He’s obviously a guy who makes a lot of plays and kind of has his own style, his own technique,” Manning said. “When he sees something, he’s aggressive and he always seems to be around the ball. You always have to keep your eyes on him.”

Samuel played three snaps against New Orleans on Nov. 29 and hasn’t played since. He’s ready to return from a lingering shoulder injury.

“Just being injured and hurting and not feeling like yourself every day was tough,” Samuel said. “Like I said, I’m working hard to get back close to 100 percent, as close as I can and be back to normal.”

With the NFC South title and a playoff berth wrapped up, the Falcons could let Samuel rest. But Falcons coach Mike Smith said that the team will play to win down the stretch.

“That’s not my call,” Samuel said. “I’m here to work hard and help my team any way I can. I just do what I’m obligated to do.”

Robert McClain and Christopher Owens both spent time in Samuel’s left cornerback spot while he’s been sidelined.

“They did a good job,” Samuel said. “Everybody did a good job. Rob and C.O. came in and made some plays. They helped us win some games.”

Samuel has 31 tackles and 13 passes defensed, according to the coaches’ film review. He also has two interceptions.

In addition to providing tips on Manning, Samuel, a 10-year veteran, has shared his career knowledge with the Falcons young cornerbacks.

“He’s been a big mentor to everybody in the secondary,” said McClain, a third-year player. “He brings a different aspect to the game for us.”

Perhaps not coincidentally, McClain is having a breakthrough season at nickel back.

“Personally, he’s taught me so much, just from me watching him and asking him questions,” McClain said. “He talks about his keys and how he plays certain routes. I’ve learned this year just from being on the same team with Asante.”

Even the safeties have picked up some pointers.

“He’s definitely helped us out a lot because he’s been in the league a long time,” safety Thomas DeCoud said. “He’s played against most every team in the league. He’s seen every offense and knows coordinators when they were at different places and what their philosophies are. So he’s definitely added that veteran swagger and the knowledge of the game of football. He’s made everybody better in that regard.”

With Samuel’s return, the defense should be near full strength. However, safety William Moore is battling a hamstring injury and likely will be replaced by Chris Hope in the starting lineup.

“We have some work to do as you could see from the last game,” said Samuel, referencing the Carolina loss. “We took a step back last week. We are trying to put it back together to where we can have some momentum leading into the next season (the playoffs).”


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Who’s the best receiving tandem? Roddy & Julio? Cruz & Nicks?

Atlanta Falcons: Quarterback Matt Ryan is not going over the physical cliff

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Report card: Falcons grades for loss to Panthers

Falcons quoteboard after the 30-20 loss to the Panthers

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35 comments Add your comment

LOL at The Aints

December 14th, 2012
3:50 pm

Enter your comments here


December 14th, 2012
3:56 pm

I think the Birds will rise up in this game, but would have “mo(o)re hope” if Moore, not Hope, is at SS.


December 14th, 2012
4:18 pm

Hope fully we can come out and cause Manning to do some dumb mistakes


December 14th, 2012
4:47 pm

the birds will be drop-kicked back to flowery branch sunday afternoon!

NFC South Champs

December 14th, 2012
9:11 pm

the giants will lose for the sixth time this year !


December 14th, 2012
10:04 pm

Vilma is a guilty thug!

1 and done

December 14th, 2012
10:25 pm

Brees has a noodle arm.

[...] Atlanta Falcons This entry was posted in Atlanta Falcons and tagged Falcons, history, Manning, Samuel. Bookmark the permalink. ← Buddy Nix: Buffalo Bills should trade up for QB in draft [...]

Michael M.

December 15th, 2012
12:15 am

Falcons win Sunday with a huge upset over the Giants……….probably beat em by the 2 points they scored last year…………….seriously.

Falcons Rule.

December 15th, 2012
12:18 am

Angry Birds will show the whole world who the true KING of the NFL is…….42 – 17….on three………DOMINATE!!! 17 – 2 coming up……Get off the wagon you azzclown doubters… too Michael M…….Moron.

Esquire i

December 15th, 2012
12:36 am

Enter your comments here

Esquire is in the HOUSE

December 15th, 2012
12:37 am

Everywhere we goooO,
Everywhere we goooO,
People wanna knooOw,
People wanna knooOw,
Who we aaa are,
Who we aaa are,
So we tell theem, So we tell theem,
We are the FALCONS!! We are the FALCONS!!



Esquire is in the HOUSE

December 15th, 2012
12:38 am

Anybody here tonight? I’m lonely…Everybody is invited to my place to practice our fight song….Please???…sob :(

Esquire is in the HOUSE

December 15th, 2012
12:41 am

SuxTHISBZERO where are you hiding at? I miss your peeswank!


December 15th, 2012
12:42 am

Falcon James

December 15th, 2012
1:30 am

I hope Asante gave Dunta some tips on how not to get burned.

wisconsinfalcons fan

December 15th, 2012
3:28 am

all we need to do is go to basis, make the catch run like we can’t be stop run and kick ass on defense like we know we should be doing I don’t care if it is the g men who cares let’s kick ass, plain and simple, and just to say I’m very sorry about the indecent that happen today in Newtown , Con. it is very sad for the parent that lost their child very sad, and let’s pray for the parents that still have their love ones, God bless each and everyone that was touch in this tragedy, so sad God bless every one


December 15th, 2012
8:31 am

It’s not the secondary i’m worried about, it’s the run stoppers on the D-line that’s gotta step up their game. Likewise if the O-line doesn’t give Matt time to complete passes it gonna be a bad day. Also it would be nice to see the O-line open some holes for J Quizz. Falcons 24 Giants 21.


December 15th, 2012
8:56 am

This game is going to be won in the trenches in two different ways: 1) Can the Falcons offensive line keep the Giants pass rush under control so Ryan can torch their pathetic secondary? 2) Can our defensive front 4 slow down the Giants running game or will they be a sieve and allow 200 yards again on the ground? My gut feeling on this is the Falcons are going to come up big once again at home and keep Manning and the Giants out of the win column and struggling for a playoff spot in the last 2 weeks! On the other hand, if we get MCHammered by these boys again……we may be in trouble the rest of the season.

JJ Fad

December 15th, 2012
9:51 am

Go Giants! Time to represent…


December 15th, 2012
10:27 am

the falcons secondary and linebacker need to be physical and rough up the giants recievers.the secondary should not be scared and play 10 yards off their recievers.make them work for everything they get and ram their tightend on every play.don’t let them off the line easy like in other game.mike smith need to stay in the officials faces about about the giants oline holding the defensive linemen. thats what happens everytime the falcons play the giants.if they do these things, the falcons will have victory tommorow


December 15th, 2012
1:19 pm

DLed, if the article title is about Samuel’s history against Eli I think you should include it: In 8 games, Manning has targeted Samuel 31 times, completing 15 of those passes for 22 yards, one touchdown, three interceptions, and a 43.4 passer rating. Yeah, he dropped an INT in the Superbowl but he’s generally owned Eli.


December 15th, 2012
1:56 pm

Falcphonies are going down. Giants will expose them and the gagger “drop the game ending interception twice in the SB Samuels” yet again.


December 15th, 2012
2:30 pm

Giants. – 28
Falcons – 18

Lots of field goals this time.

Starship 1

December 15th, 2012
3:19 pm

Play to win, instead of conservative play not to lose.


December 15th, 2012
5:41 pm

Yeah, we all know the history the Falcons have with Eli, especially the recent history. But Asante’s history with Eli ain’t too bad either, according to PirdBoop’s post….I think he’ll do fine, if he’s well enough to play and stay in the game.
And actually, the all-time record against the Giants is tied at 10 apiece, so this will be the tie-breaker of sorts…



December 15th, 2012
5:49 pm


December 15th, 2012
6:09 pm

It appears wisconsinfalconfan is a distant relative of Joe Tess Fish House (or whatever his name is).

Rick in Warner Robins

December 15th, 2012
9:22 pm

We can’t afford for Asante Samuel to get well and be back in the line-up, he’s been burned about as many times as Dunta Robinson. The DBs played better without him.


December 15th, 2012
11:03 pm

Should be a good game but trust that the Giants are not concerned about Asante Samuel. We do what we do, regardless of who and where the opponent may be.

[...] – Here’s Darryl Ledbetter’s piece on Asante Samuel’s history against Eli Manning. [...]

wisconsinfalcons fan

December 16th, 2012
4:17 pm

sorry falconRed no way I’m related to him I have my on name here an I have no idea who he is, anyway all i was saying how sad the incident was in Newtown,CT. If I said something to offend you it was not my intent

[...] career wasn’t always heading toward glory, of course. In his first two season more… Samuel, Falcons have a history with Eli Manning – 12/14/2012 FLOWERY BRANCH — Cornerback Asante Samuel and the Falcons [...]

[...] the game, Manning spoke of the cornerback.s abilities: “He’s obviously a guy who makes a lot of plays and kind of has [...]

[...] the game, Manning spoke of the cornerback.s abilities: “He’s obviously a guy who makes a lot of plays and kind of has [...]