NFL: Giants crush Packers 38-10
East Rutherford, N.J. • Adam Merchant had a wish and a command for the New York Giants.
The 15-year-old fan from Barre, Vt., attended practice and then Sunday's game with the Packers thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. He wanted the Giants to snap their two-game slide and get out of their offensive funk.
So he ordered the Giants to "play like world champions," and they delivered a 38-10 rout of Green Bay.
Eli Manning came back from the bye week with a rested arm, and that offensive slump was tossed aside. The Giants (7-4) said they turned things around for themselves, and for Merchant, who has cancer.
"They have one wish," Manning said after throwing for three scores to set a team record with 200 TD passes for his career. "It is sad when you think about it they have one wish, what you want to do, and he wanted to come to Giants practice ... and to a game.
"He said, 'Go show everybody you are the world champions and why you are the world champions and play that way.' Everybody got fired up and played the way we know we can."
The Packers certainly did not. The showcase game was decided early as the Giants outscored the Packers 31-10 in the opening half to end Green Bay's five-game winning streak.
After being manhandled in last season's playoffs by the Giants, who went on to win the Super Bowl, the Packers weren't much more competitive this time. Aaron Rodgers was sacked five times, including twice by Mathias Kiwanuka, who spent much of the game at defensive tackle rather than in his usual linebacker spot.
"When your quarterback is under pressure like that, it affected me tonight," coach Mike McCarthy said of his play-calling. "I probably didn't call the best game I've called. You have to protect your quarterback. It's your No. 1 responsibility."
New York's balanced attack was guided by Manning, who had his first strong game in a month with 249 yards passing.
"I never thought my arm was tired, never felt like it," Manning said. "After a week off, you come back to practice, it felt good, alive, balls coming out with a little pop on it. ... After 10 weeks, it definitely needed a little rest." Giants 38,Packers 10
Green Bay 7 3 0 0 10
N.Y. Giants 17 14 7 0 38
NYG • A.Brown 2 run (Tynes kick), 12:38.
GB • Nelson 61 pass from Rodgers (Crosby kick), 10:44.
NYG • Randle 16 pass from Manning (Tynes kick), 2:38.
NYG • FG Tynes 43, :23.
NYG • Cruz 9 pass from Manning (Tynes kick), 9:37.
GB • FG Crosby 28, 3:37.
NYG • Bradshaw 13 run (Tynes kick), :44.
NYG • Nicks 13 pass from Manning (Tynes kick), 3:36.
Attendance • 80,365.
First downs 16 23
Total Net Yards 317 390
Rushes-yards 26-116 31-147
Passing 201 243
Punt Returns 2-20 2-0
Kickoff Returns 7-168 3-72
Interceptions Ret. 0-0 1-0
Comp-Att-Int 15-27-1 16-30-0
Sacked-Yards Lost 5-29 1-6
Punts 4-38.5 3-45.0
Fumbles-Lost 1-1 2-0
Penalties-yards 7-49 4-24
Time of Possession 28:47 31:13
Rushing • Green Bay, Starks 8-35, Green 10-30, Rodgers 3-22, Kuhn 4-17, Cobb 1-12. N.Y. Giants, A.Brown 13-64, Bradshaw 10-58, Wilson 6-13, Manning 2-12.
Passing • Green Bay, Rodgers 14-25-1-219, Harrell 1-2-0-11. N.Y. Giants, Manning 16-30-0-249.
Receiving • Green Bay, Cobb 4-39, Finley 3-51, Kuhn 3-49, Green 3-20, Nelson 2-71. N.Y. Giants, Nicks 5-77, Bennett 3-44, Cruz 3-36, Bradshaw 2-61, Randle 2-26, Wilson 1-5.
Missed Field Goals • Green Bay, Crosby 55 (WL).