NFL Preseason Preview - Chicago (1-1) at N.Y. Giants (1-1)
By Scott Garbarini, NFL Editor
(Sports Network) - A pair of expected NFC contenders coming off strong
performances continue their preparations for the upcoming 2012 season when the
defending world champion New York Giants welcome the Chicago Bears to MetLife
The Giants will be holding their first true home game since capturing last
season's Lombardi Trophy with a hard-fought 21-17 victory over New England in
Super Bowl XLVI, though Big Blue was in its familiar venue for last weekend's
annual preseason encounter with the fellow Met Life Stadium-tenant Jets. The
Giants looked very much like an elite outfit in that one, taking the latest
battle of New York with a convincing 26-3 triumph over their crosstown rivals.
Excellent defense set the tone for last Saturday's rout, with the Giants
sacking quarterbacks Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow a combined seven times while
limiting the Jets to a meager 148 total yards on the night. The unit also came
through with a touchdown when rookie cornerback Jayron Hosley intercepted a
hurried Sanchez and returned the pick 77 yards late in the first half.
The Giants' offense wasn't quite as crisp, with Super Bowl XLVI Most Valuable
Player Eli Manning going just 7-of-14 for 62 yards and tossing an interception
before exiting at halftime.
New York will probably be without top receiver Hakeem Nicks once again, though
the big-play wideout did resume practicing this week as he recovers from a
broken foot sustained earlier in the summer. Will Beatty, the Giants'
projected starter at left tackle, remains sidelined indefinitely with a
lingering back issue, however, with veteran Sean Locklear filling in during
The Giants continue to be banged up on the defensive end as well. Tackles
Chris Canty (knee), Shaun Rogers (blood clot in leg) and Marvin Austin (back)
will all sit out another week, as will linebacker Michael Boley (hamstring)
and cornerback Terrell Thomas (knee). Hosley joined the list of walking
wounded when he left Saturday's win with a turf toe injury.
Chicago bounced back from a lopsided home loss to Peyton Manning and the
Denver Broncos in the opening week of the preseason to down Washington last
Saturday at Soldier Field. The Bears wound up holding on for a 33-31 decision
over the Redskins, but had built a comfortable 30-10 lead after three quarters
before Washington rallied against the bottom members of the Chicago depth
Starting quarterback Jay Cutler and understudy Jason Campbell both fared well
in the win, with the pair combining for 263 yards on 16-of-28 passing. The
Bears' offense also got good games out of a pair of rookies, with second-round
wideout Alshon Jeffery coming up with three catches for 62 yards and fourth-
round tight end Evan Rodriguez gaining 49 yards on his three grabs.
Offseason acquisition Brandon Marshall added 61 yards on two receptions for
the Bears, who finished with 307 net passing yards as a team.
Chicago was hit with a few concerning injuries against the Redskins. Starting
free safety Chris Conte will miss the rest of the preseason after dislocating
his shoulder, while rookie backup Brandon Hardin was carted off the field with
a neck problem in the third quarter and punter Adam Podlesh strained his left
The Bears are already without defensive leader Brian Urlacher, with the
decorated middle linebacker to be held out of the entire exhibition slate to
build strength in his surgically repaired left knee.
Chicago owns a 15-7 advantage in its all-time preseason series with New York
and had won three consecutive bouts in the set before being dealt a 41-13 loss
at MetLife Stadium last August.
08/22 14:44:38 ET
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