Next Sunday my favorite sports team of all time the New York Giants will play in the Super Bowl. I never thought the Giants would be in the big game this year. I am one of those people who thought that the Giants’ head coach, Tom Coughlin, should have been fired at the end of last year. This was his fourth year with the Giants and they have been mediocre for most of that time. Who knows if that was really his fault but when a sports team has been bad to mediocre for too long you fire the head coach. That’s how professional sports works.

Most of this year the Giants have been pretty mediocre. They have talent but they didn’t play like it for a lot of games. I watched every game and they tortured me for a lot of them. They won just enough games to make the playoffs, which is better than twenty other teams in the league, but it was still painful to watch them in most of their games. They played plenty of teams that they were better than but never blew them out. They let bad teams hang around to the end of games and the Giants barley hung on to win. They lost a bunch too. Watching them did not fill me with confidence.

At the beginning of the year I fully expected their coach to be fired by now. Through out the season I saw no evidence that would have changed that expectation. I wanted to my expectations to change. I was hoping that the Giants and Tom Coughlin would do well because they’re my team and I always want them to win. I kept waiting for them to prove me wrong all season. But their game time execution didn’t always reflect my hopes.

Then a funny thing happened. The perfect record 15-0 New England Patriots came into town for the last game of the season. The Giants and Patriots had their playoff slots sewn up and the result of the game meant nothing, standings wise, but the Giants finally played with some fire. They played like the game meant something to them. This is the kind of football I’ve been waiting for them to play for years. They finally played like a good team and not a mediocre one. Unfortunately the Patriots played like a great team and won the game 38-35 but you can’t have everything.

The next week the Giants played their first playoff game. It was against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Giants were the underdog. I expected the Giants to win this one because they have more talent than the Buccaneers. All the experts picked the Bucs but I never really understood why. Except for the fact that it was a home game for Tampa. The Giants won the game without a whole lot of trouble and it was on to Dallas.

The Dallas Cowboys had the best record in the NFC and were heavy favorites. The game was in Dallas and I didn’t expect the Giants to win but I though they had a good shot. It was a game between division rivals, which means they play each other twice a year (out of sixteen games), and know each other well. The Cowboys had already beaten the Giants twice this year but that meant nothing. Anything can happen in a game between division rivals. The Giants won in thrilling fashion. Excellent. On to Green Bay.

The Green Bay Packers and their fans were happy that the Giants beat the Cowboys. If the Cowboys had won then the Packers would have to go to Dallas to play. Since the Giants won the game was in Green Bay (they had a better record than the Giants). Every team wants home field advantage in the playoffs.

The Giants were big underdogs again but I had confidence in them. They were finally playing well and I thought Dallas was a scarier team than Green Bay. It was zero degrees Fahrenheit at game time and both teams put on a hell of a show with a Super Bowl berth at stake. The Giants pulled off the win and something I never thought would happen this year is happening. They are going to the Super Bowl. They get to play the perfect Patriots (18-0 now) again and are bigger underdogs than ever. I’d put the Giants’ chances of winning at one in three but I don’t care. I never thought they’d make it this far and I can’t wait for next week’s big game.