New York Giants
|New York Giants|
Play in MetLife Stadium
East Rutherford, New Jersey
Headquartered in the Quest Diagnostics Training Center
East Rutherford, New Jersey
|Owner(s)||John Mara and Steve Tisch|
|General manager||Jerry Reese|
|Head coach||Tom Coughlin|
Conference championships (11)
Division championships (16)
|Playoff appearances (31)|
The New York Giants are a professional American football team located in the New York metropolitan area. The Giants are currently members of the East Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL). The team plays its home games in East Rutherford, New Jersey at MetLife Stadium, which it shares with the New York Jets in a unique arrangement. The Giants hold their summer training camp at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center at the Meadowlands Sports Complex.
The Giants were one of five teams that joined the NFL in 1925, and is the only one of that group still existing, as well as the league's longest-established team in the Northeastern United States. The team ranks third among all NFL franchises with eight NFL titles: four in the pre–Super Bowl era (1927, 1934, 1938, 1956) and four since the advent of the Super Bowl (Super Bowls XXI (1986), XXV (1990), XLII (2007), and XLVI (2011)), along with more championship appearances than any other team, with 19 overall appearances. Their championship tally is surpassed only by the Green Bay Packers (13) and Chicago Bears (9). During their history, the Giants have featured 15 Hall of Fame players, including NFL Most Valuable Player (MVP) award winners Mel Hein, Frank Gifford, Y. A. Tittle, and Lawrence Taylor.
To distinguish themselves from the professional baseball team of the same name, the football team was incorporated as the "New York National League Football Company, Inc." in 1929 and changed to "New York Football Giants, Inc." in 1937. Although the baseball team moved to San Francisco after the 1957 season, the football team continues to use "New York Football Giants, Inc." as its legal corporate name, and is often referred to by fans and sportscasters as the "New York Football Giants". The team has also gained several nicknames, including "Big Blue", the "G-Men", and the "Jints", an intentionally mangled contraction seen frequently in the New York Post and New York Daily News, originating from the baseball team when they were based in New York. Additionally the team as a whole is occasionally referred to as the "Big Blue Wrecking Crew", even though this moniker primarily and originally refers to the Giants defensive unit during the 80s and early 90s (and before that to the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball teams of the late 1970s and early 1980s).
The team's heated rivalry with the Philadelphia Eagles is the oldest of the NFC East rivalries, dating all the way back to 1933, and has been called the best rivalry in the NFL in the 21st century.
- 1 Team history
- 1.1 1925–32
- 1.2 1933–46
- 1.3 Fourth NFL Championship and "The Greatest Game Ever Played" (1947–1963)
- 1.4 Postseason Drought and Resurgence (1964–1982)
- 1.5 Bill Parcells Era (1983–1990)
- 1.6 Post-Parcells Era (1991–1996)
- 1.7 Jim Fassel Era (1997–2003)
- 1.8 Tom Coughlin/Eli Manning Era (2004–present)
- 1.9 Timeline
- 2 Championships
- 3 Logos and uniforms
- 4 Ownerships, financial history and fan base
- 5 Rivalries
- 6 Players of note
- 7 Coaches of note
- 8 Media, radio and television
- 9 See also
- 10 References
- 11 Bibliography
- 12 External links
The Giants played their first game as an away game against All New Britain in New Britain, Connecticut, on October 4, 1925. They defeated New Britain 26–0 in front of a crowd of 10,000. The Giants were successful in their first season, finishing with an 8–4 record.
In its third season, the team finished with the best record in the league at 11–1–1 and was awarded the NFL title. After a disappointing fourth season (1928) owner Mara bought the entire squad of the Detroit Wolverines, principally to acquire star quarterback Benny Friedman, and merged the two teams under the Giants name.
In 1930, there were still many who questioned the quality of the professional game, claiming the college "amateurs" played with more intensity than professionals. In December 1930, the Giants played a team of Notre Dame All Stars at the Polo Grounds to raise money for the unemployed of New York City. It was also an opportunity to establish the skill and prestige of the pro game. Knute Rockne reassembled his Four Horsemen along with the stars of his 1924 Championship squad and told them to score early, then defend. Rockne, like much of the public, thought little of pro football and expected an easy win. But from the beginning it was a one-way contest, with Friedman running for two Giant touchdowns and Hap Moran passing for another. Notre Dame failed to score. When it was all over, Coach Rockne told his team, "That was the greatest football machine I ever saw. I am glad none of you got hurt." The game raised $100,000 for the homeless, and is often credited with establishing the legitimacy of the professional game for those who were critical. It also was the last game the legendary Rockne ever coached; he was killed in an airplane crash on March 31, 1931.
In a 14-year span from 1933 to 1947, the Giants qualified to play in the NFL championship game 8 times, winning twice. During this period the Giants were led by Hall of Fame coach Steve Owen, and Hall of Fame players Mel Hein, Red Badgro, and Tuffy Leemans. The period also featured the 1944 Giants which are ranked as the #1 defensive team in NFL history, "...a truly awesome unit". They gave up only 7.5 points per game (a record that still stands) and shut out five of their 10 opponents, though they lost 14-7 to the Green Bay Packers in the 1944 NFL Championship Game. The famous "Sneakers Game" was played in this era where the Giants defeated the Chicago Bears on an icy field in the 1934 NFL Championship Game, while wearing sneakers for better traction. The Giants played the Detroit Lions to a scoreless tie on November 7, 1943: no NFL game played since then has ended in a scoreless tie. The Giants were particularly successful from the latter half of the 1930s until the United States entry into World War II. They added their third NFL championship in 1938 with a 23–17 win over the Green Bay Packers.
Fourth NFL Championship and "The Greatest Game Ever Played" (1947–1963)
They did not win another league title until 1956, aided by a number of future Pro Football Hall of Fame players such as running back Frank Gifford, linebacker Sam Huff, and offensive tackle Roosevelt Brown, as well as all-pro running back Alex Webster. The Giants' 1956 championship team not only included players who would eventually find their way to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but a Hall of Fame coaching staff, as well. Head coach Jim Lee Howell's staff had Vince Lombardi coaching the offense and Tom Landry coaching the defense. From 1958 to 1963, the Giants played in the NFL Championship Game five times, but failed to win. Most significantly, the Giants played the Colts in the 1958 NFL Championship Game that is considered a watershed event in the history of the NFL. The game, which the Giants lost in overtime 23–17, is often called "The Greatest Game Ever Played" and is considered one of the most important events in furthering the NFL's popularity. The following year, they lost the championship to the Colts again, giving up a 9-7 4th quarter lead en route to a 31–16 loss. In 1963 led by league MVP quarterback Y.A. Tittle, who threw a then-NFL record 36 touchdown passes, the Giants advanced to the NFL Championship Game, where they lost to the Bears 14–10.
Postseason Drought and Resurgence (1964–1982)
From 1964 to 1978, the Giants registered only two winning seasons and no playoff appearances. With players such as Tittle and Gifford approaching their mid 30s, the team declined rapidly, finishing 2–10–2 in 1964. They rebounded with a 7–7 record in 1965, before compiling a league-worst 1–12–1 record, and allowing more than 500 points on defense in 1966. During the 1969 preseason, the Giants lost their first meeting with the New York Jets, 37–14, in front of 70,874 fans at the Yale Bowl in New Haven, Connecticut. Following the game, Wellington Mara fired coach Allie Sherman, and replaced him with former Giants fullback Alex Webster.
In 1967, the team acquired quarterback Fran Tarkenton from the Minnesota Vikings. Despite having several respectable seasons with Tarkenton at quarterback, including a 7–7 finish in 1967 and 9–5 in 1970, the Giants traded him back to the Vikings after a 4–10 finish in 1971 . Tarkenton would go on to lead the Vikings to three Super Bowls and earn a place in the Hall of Fame, while the Giants suffered through one of the worst stretches in their history, winning only 23 games from 1973–79. Before the 1976 season, the Giants tried to revive a weak offense by replacing retired RB Ron Johnson with future HOF fullback Larry Csonka, but Csonka was often injured and ineffective during his 3 years in New York. The 1977 season featured a roster that included three rookie quarterbacks.
The Giants were allowed to play their home games at the Yale Bowl in New Haven, Connecticut in 1973–74, and at Shea Stadium (home of the Mets and Jets) in 1975, due to the renovation of Yankee Stadium. They finally moved into their own dedicated state-of-the-art stadium in 1976, when they moved into Giants Stadium at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, New Jersey. One of the low points during this period was the play known as the "Miracle at the Meadowlands", which occurred in 1978. With the Giants trying to kill the clock and secure a win against the Philadelphia Eagles, offensive coordinator Bob Gibson chose to call a running play. This resulted in "The Fumble" by QB Joe Pisarcik that was returned for a game-winning touchdown by the Eagles' Herman Edwards.
The Giants' front office operations were complicated by a long-standing feud between Wellington Mara and his nephew, Tim Mara. Jack Mara had died in 1965, leaving his share of the club to his son Tim. Wellington and Tim's personal styles and their visions for the club clashed, and eventually they stopped talking to each other. Commissioner Rozelle intervened and appointed a neutral general manager, George Young, allowing the club to operate more smoothly. The feud became moot on February 20, 1991, when Tim Mara sold his shares in the club to Preston Robert Tisch.
In 1979, the Giants began the steps that would, in time, return them to the pinnacle of the NFL. These included the drafting of quarterback Phil Simms in 1979, and linebacker Lawrence Taylor in 1981. In 1981, Taylor won the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year awards and the Giants made the playoffs for the first time since 1963. One of the few bright spots during this time was the team's excellent linebackers, who were known as the Crunch Bunch. After the strike-shortened 1982 season, in which they finished 4–5, head coach Ray Perkins resigned to take over the same position at the University of Alabama. In a change that would prove crucial in the coming years, he was replaced by the team's defensive coordinator, Bill Parcells.
Bill Parcells Era (1983–1990)
In 1983, Bill Parcells was promoted to head coach from defensive coordinator. One of his first moves was to change his starting quarterback, sitting the injury-prone and struggling Phil Simms (who had missed the entire 1982 season with an injury) and electing instead to go with Scott Brunner, who had gone 4-5 as the starter in place of Simms in the strike-shortened previous season. Parcells went as far as to demote Simms to the third string position, promoting Jeff Rutledge over Simms to be Brunner's backup. Parcells later said the move was a mistake and one he "nearly paid for dearly" as the team finished with a 3–12–1 record and his job security was called into question.
In the offseason the Giants released Brunner and named Simms the starter. The move paid off as the team won nine games and returned to the playoffs. After beating the Los Angeles Rams in the Wild Card Round, the Giants prepared for a showdown against top-seeded San Francisco. The 49ers defeated the Giants 21–10 in the Divisional Round.
The 1985 Giants compiled a 10–6 record and avenged their loss against San Francisco by beating them in the Wild Card round 17–3. However, they again lost in the Divisional Round, this time to the Chicago Bears, by a score of 21–0. However, the following season would end with the Giants winning their first Super Bowl championship.
First Super Bowl Championship (1986 season)
After 9–7 and 10–6 finishes in 1984 and 1985 respectively, the Giants compiled a 14–2 record in 1986 led by league MVP and Defensive Player of the Year Lawrence Taylor and the Big Blue Wrecking Crew defense. As of 2014, this is the Giants' best regular season record since the NFL began playing 16-game seasons in 1978. After clinching the top seed in the NFC, the Giants defeated the 49ers 49–3 in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs  and the Redskins 17–0 in the NFC championship game, advancing to their first Super Bowl, Super Bowl XXI, against the Denver Broncos at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. Led by MVP Simms who completed 22 of 25 passes for a Super Bowl record 88% completion percentage, they defeated the Broncos 39–20, to win their first championship since 1956. In addition to Phil Simms and Lawrence Taylor, the team was led during this period by head coach Bill Parcells, tight end Mark Bavaro, running back Joe Morris, and Hall of Fame linebacker Harry Carson.
The Giants struggled to a 6–9 record in the strike-marred 1987 season, due largely to a decline in the running game, as Morris managed only 658 yards behind an injury-riddled offensive line. The early portion of the 1988 season was marred by a scandal involving Lawrence Taylor. Taylor had abused cocaine and was suspended for the first four games of the season for his second violation of the league's substance abuse policy. Despite the controversy, the Giants finished 10–6, and Taylor recorded 15.5 sacks after his return from the suspension. They surged to a 12–4 record in 1989, but lost to the Los Angeles Rams in their opening playoff game when Flipper Anderson caught a 47-yard touchdown pass to give the Rams a 19–13 overtime win.
Second Super Bowl Championship (1990 season)
In 1990, the Giants went 13–3 and, at the time, set an NFL record for fewest turnovers in a season (14). They defeated the San Francisco 49ers, who were attempting to win the Super Bowl for an unprecedented third straight year, 15–13 at San Francisco  and then defeated the Buffalo Bills 20–19 in Super Bowl XXV.
Post-Parcells Era (1991–1996)
Following the 1990 season, Parcells resigned as head coach and was replaced by the team's offensive coordinator, Ray Handley. Handley served as coach for two disappointing seasons (1991–92), which saw the Giants fall from Super Bowl champions to an 8–8 record in 1991 and a 6–10 record in 1992. He was fired following the 1992 season, and replaced by former Denver Broncos' coach Dan Reeves. In the early 1990s, Simms and Taylor, two of the stars of the 1980s, played out the last seasons of their careers with steadily declining production. The Giants experienced a resurgent season with Reeves at the helm in 1993 however, and Simms and Taylor ended their careers as members of a playoff team.
The Giants initially struggled in the post Simms-Taylor era. After starting 3–7 in 1994, the Giants won their final six games to finish 9–7 but missed the playoffs. Quarterback Dave Brown received heavy criticism throughout the season. Brown performed poorly the following two seasons, and the Giants struggled to 5–11 and 6–10 records. Reeves was fired following the 1996 season.
Jim Fassel Era (1997–2003)
In 1997, the Giants named Jim Fassel, who had spent the previous season as offensive coordinator of the Arizona Cardinals, as their 16th head coach. Fassel named Danny Kanell the team's starting quarterback. The Giants finished the 1997 season with a record of 10–5–1 and qualified for the playoffs for the first time in four years. However, they lost in the Wild Card round to the Vikings at home. The following year, the Giants began the season 4–8 before rallying to finish the season 8–8. One of the notable games of that season was a win over the eventual Super Bowl champion Denver Broncos in week 15, giving the Broncos their first loss of the season after starting 13–0.
Before the 1999 season, the Giants signed ex-Carolina Panthers quarterback Kerry Collins. Collins was the first–ever draft choice of the expansion Carolina Panthers in 1995, and led the Panthers to the NFC Championship game in his second season. However, problems with alcohol, conflicts with his teammates and questions about his character led to his release from the Panthers. The Giants finished the season with a 7–9 record, Fassel's first losing season as head coach.
NFC Champions (2000 season)
In 2000, the Giants were looking to make the playoffs for the first time in three seasons. The Giants started the season 7–2, but suffered back-to-back home losses to St. Louis and Detroit to make their record 7–4 and call their playoff prospects into question. At a press conference following the Giants' loss to Detroit, Fassel guaranteed that "this team is going to the playoffs". The Giants responded, winning the rest of their regular season games to finish the season 12–4 and clinch the top seed in the NFC. In the Divisional Round, the Giants beat the Philadelphia Eagles 20–10 at home to qualify for the NFC Championship Game, in which they defeated the Minnesota Vikings 41–0. They advanced to play the Baltimore Ravens in Super Bowl XXXV. Though the Giants went into halftime down only 10–0, the Ravens dominated the second half. Their defense harassed Kerry Collins all game long, resulting in Collins completing only 15 of 39 passes for 112 yards and 4 interceptions. The Ravens won the game 34–7.
After a disappointing 7–9 record in 2001, the Giants finished the 2002 season with a record of 10–6, qualifying for the playoffs as a wild card. This set up a meeting with the San Francisco 49ers in Candlestick Park in the Wild Card round. The Giants built up a sizable lead throughout the game, and led 38–14 with 4:27 left in the third quarter. However, San Francisco rallied to win the game by one point, with the final score as 39–38.
After a dismal 2003 season in which the Giants finished with a 4–12 record, Jim Fassel was released by the Giants. His head coaching record with the Giants during this time was 58–53–1.
Tom Coughlin/Eli Manning Era (2004–present)
In 2004, three years after their last Super Bowl appearance, Fassel was replaced by current coach Tom Coughlin. Although Collins had several solid seasons as the Giants quarterback, he experienced his share of struggles. In 2004, the Giants completed a draft day trade for University of Mississippi quarterback Eli Manning. Manning became the team's starting quarterback in the middle of the 2004 season, taking over for Kurt Warner. During the three-year period from 2004–2006, Tom Coughlin's Giants compiled a 25–23 regular season record and two appearances in the Wild Card Round — both losses (to the Carolina Panthers in 2005 and to the Philadelphia Eagles in 2006.) and spawned intense media scrutiny concerning the direction of the team. During this period in their history, standout players included defensive end Michael Strahan, who set the NFL single season record in sacks in 2001, and running back Tiki Barber, who set a team record for rushing yards in a season in 2005. Barber retired at the end of the 2006 season.
Third Super Bowl Championship (2007 season)
Going into 2007, the Giants had made the playoffs in back-to-back seasons. In 2007, the Giants became the third NFL franchise to win at least 600 games when they defeated the Atlanta Falcons 31–10 on Monday Night Football. For the 2007 season, the NFL scheduled the Giants' road game against the Miami Dolphins on October 28 in London's Wembley Stadium; this was the first NFL regular-season game to be played outside of North America. The Giants defeated the Dolphins, 13–10. The Giants finished 10–6, and became NFC Champions after defeating the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dallas Cowboys, and Green Bay Packers in the NFC Playoffs. They set a record for most consecutive road wins in a single season with 10 (a streak which ended with a loss to the Cleveland Browns during week 6 of the 2008 season).
The Patriots (18–0) entered the Super Bowl undefeated and were 12 point favorites going into game weekend. The Giants defeated the Patriots 17–14 in Super Bowl XLII, capped by the famous "Manning to Tyree" pass. It was the third biggest upset by betting line in Super Bowl history (The Baltimore Colts were favored by 17 over the New York Jets in Super Bowl III, and the St. Louis Rams were favored by 14 over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XXXVI.). Co-owner John Mara described it as "the greatest victory in the history of this franchise, without question".
Late Season Collapses (2008–2010)
The Giants began the 2008 NFL season with a record of 11–1, but lost three of their last four regular season games partially due to a self-inflicted gunshot wound to wide receiver Plaxico Burress. However, the Giants still won the NFC East with a record of 12–4, and clinched the number one seed in the NFC after beating the Carolina Panthers for home field advantage and a first-round bye. In the Divisional Round of the playoffs, the Giants lost 23–11 to the Philadelphia Eagles at home.
In 2009, the Giants opened a new training complex, the Timex Performance Center, also located in the Meadowlands. After starting 5–0 in the 2009 season, New York lost to the likewise undefeated New Orleans Saints at the Superdome 48–27, beginning a four-game losing streak, in which they lost to the Arizona Cardinals 24–17, the San Diego Chargers 21–20 and the Philadelphia Eagles 40–17. The streak was broken with a 34–31 overtime victory against the Falcons. On Thanksgiving night, they lost to the Denver Broncos 26–6. The Giants next beat the division leading Cowboys. A week later, with a record of 7–5, they lost to the Philadelphia Eagles, 45–38. On December 27, the Giants lost to the Carolina Panthers 41–9 in their final game at Giants Stadium, and were eliminated from playoff eligibility. The Giants finished the season 8–8.
Following the season, the Giants fired first-year defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan, and replaced him with the former Buffalo Bills interim head coach, Perry Fewell. The Giants defense finished 13th overall under Sheridan, giving up 324.9 yards per game, and the final two losses of the season against Carolina and Minnesota, in which the Giants gave up 85 points, ultimately led to the firing.
In 2010, the Giants moved from Giants Stadium into MetLife Stadium, then known as the "New Meadowlands Stadium". They won against the Panthers in the very first game at the New Meadowlands, but then lost to the Colts in the second "Manning Bowl", so-called due to Eli Manning's brother Peyton playing for the Colts. The Giants dropped one game to the Tennessee Titans before going on a five-game winning streak, beating the Chicago Bears, Houston Texans, Detroit Lions, Dallas Cowboys, and Seattle Seahawks. Before long, the Giants were 6–2, but lost two straight to division foes: to the Cowboys 33–20 at home, and to the Eagles on the road, putting the G-Men in 2nd place in the NFC East at 6–4. In first place was the Eagles, but at December 19 they were both tied for first place at 8–4, setting up a match for first place. The Giants were at home, and led 24–3 over the Eagles at halftime. The score was 31–10 with 5:40 left in the game, but Michael Vick led the Eagles to three touchdown drives to tie the game up at 31 with 40 seconds left. After a Giants three-and-outs, Matt Dodge punted the ball to Desean Jackson, who returned it for a touchdown, concluding the Giants' epic collapse. The next game, the Giants lost to the eventual Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers 45–17, and at 9–6, they faced the Redskins. They had to win and have the Packers lose in order to get into the playoffs. The Giants won 17–14, but the Packers beat the Bears 10–3, so the Giants missed out on the playoffs again, ending a collapse in which the Giants went 4–4 in their last eight games.
Fourth Super Bowl Championship (2011 season)
During the 2011 preseason, the Giants lost Kevin Boss, Steve Smith, Rich Seubert, Keith Bulluck, Derek Hagan, and pro-bowl center Shaun O'Hara to free agency. However, the season also saw the emergence of second-year wide receiver Victor Cruz and second-year tight end Jake Ballard. The Giants opened their season with a 28–14 loss to the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field on the 10th anniversary of the September 11th attacks. However, the Giants secured a 6–2 record by the midpoint of the season, including road victories over the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots. The latter victory ended the Patriots' NFL record home-game winning streak, after a touchdown pass from Manning to Jake Ballard with 15 seconds left in the game.
However, the Giants then suffered a four-game losing streak, including road losses against the resurgent San Francisco 49ers and the New Orleans Saints and home losses to the Eagles and the then-undefeated Green Bay Packers, to make their record 6–6 entering December. The Giants broke their losing streak with a tightly contested 37–34 road victory over the Cowboys on December 11, but lost at home to the Washington Redskins the following week to make their record 7–7 with a Christmas Eve showdown against their crosstown rival New York Jets the following week. The Giants won, 29–14, and knocked the Eagles out of playoff contention, to set up a Week 17 home game against the Cowboys in which the winner would clinch the NFC East while the loser would be eliminated from playoff contention. The game was flexed into Sunday Night Football. The Giants defeated the Cowboys, 31–14, and clinched the NFC East title and the fourth seed in the playoffs. Wide receiver Victor Cruz finished the regular season with 1,536 receiving yards, breaking the Giants franchise record previously held by Amani Toomer.
On January 8, 2012 in the first round of the playoffs the Giants defeated the Atlanta Falcons 24–2. After giving up an early safety in the first half, QB Eli Manning threw for three consecutive touchdowns. RBs Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs combined for 172 yards rushing, a season-high for the Giants. With the victory, the Giants advanced to the second round against the top-ranked Green Bay Packers.
On January 15, 2012, the Giants defeated the Green Bay Packers 37–20. Eli Manning threw for 330 yards and 3 touchdowns, two of which to wide receiver Hakeem Nicks. This earned the Giants a spot in the NFC Championship Game on January 22, 2012, against the San Francisco 49ers. They won this game 20–17, in overtime, with Tynes scoring the winning field goal as he did four years earlier in the same game against the Packers.
The New York Giants won Super Bowl XLVI against the New England Patriots with a score of 21–17. The winning touchdown was preceded by a 38-yard reception by receiver Mario Manningham. As in Super Bowl XLII, Eli Manning was Super Bowl MVP, defeating the New England Patriots for a second time in the Super Bowl.
Ahmad Bradshaw scored the game winning touchdown by falling into the end zone. The Patriots were allowing Bradshaw to get the touchdown so they would get the ball with some time remaining. When Eli Manning handed the ball to Bradshaw, he told him not to score. Bradshaw was about to fall down at the 1-yard line but his momentum carried him in, thus the "reluctant touchdown".
As was the case in each of their four previous Super Bowl appearances, the Giants trailed at halftime. They are the only team in NFL history to have more than two second half, come from behind, Super Bowl victories (4). (The Pittsburgh Steelers, who accomplished the feat in Super Bowl X and Super Bowl XIV, are the only other team to do it more than once.)
Post-Super Bowl Struggles (2012–present)
The Giants began the 2012 season with a home loss to the Cowboys, but rebounded to finish October with a 6-2 record and on a four-game winning streak that included a 26-3 road victory against the eventual NFC champion San Francisco 49ers. Following the arrival of Hurricane Sandy in the Northeastern United States, the Giants lost back-to-back games against the Steelers and Bengals to fall to 6-4. Despite impressive blowout home victories over the Packers, Saints and Eagles, the Giants finished the season 9-7 and out of the playoffs. The Redskins won the division with a 10–6 record only to lose to the Seahawks 24–14 in Wild Card Weekend. QB Eli Manning, DE Jason Pierre-Paul, WR Victor Cruz, and G Chris Snee represented the Giants at the Pro Bowl.
The 2013 New York Giants season began with hope that the Giants could become the first team to play in the Super Bowl in their home stadium, as MetLife Stadium was scheduled to host Super Bowl XLVIII that February. However, the Giants' playoff hopes took a massive hit when they lost the first six games of the season. They rebounded to win the next four games in a row to improve to 4-6, but lost a critical home game to the Cowboys on a last-minute field goal. They finished the season 7-9 and with a losing record for the first time since 2004. The Giants drafted rookie wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. in the 2014 NFL Draft, who would later go on to win the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year award. However, the Giants missed the playoffs for a third straight season, finishing with a 6-10 record.
Season by season timeline of the New York Giants franchise including the team name, changes of Home Field, Postseason Championships Seasons, and coaches throughout the years.
The Giants have won a total of eight League Championships: 1927, 1934, 1938, 1956, 1986, 1990, 2007 and 2011. The first four of those championships came in the pre-Super Bowl era. New York's eight championships puts them third among all currently active and defunct NFL teams, trailing only the Green Bay Packers (13) and the Chicago Bears (9).
Pre Super Bowl NFL Championships
Before the Super Bowl was instituted, the Giants won four officially recognized NFL Championships.
|1934||Steve Owen||New York, NY||Chicago Bears||30–13||8–5|
|1938||Steve Owen||New York, NY||Green Bay Packers||23–17||8–2–1|
|1956||Jim Lee Howell||New York, NY||Chicago Bears||47–7||8–3–1|
|Total NFL championships won:||4|
Super Bowl Championships
The Giants have won four Super Bowls, tied with Green Bay and New England for the third most behind only Dallas and San Francisco (both with 5), and Pittsburgh (6).
|1986||Bill Parcells||XXI||Pasadena, CA||Denver Broncos||39–20||17–2|
|1990||Bill Parcells||XXV||Tampa, FL||Buffalo Bills||20–19||16–3|
|2007||Tom Coughlin||XLII||Glendale, AZ||New England Patriots||17–14||14–6|
|2011||Tom Coughlin||XLVI||Indianapolis, IN||New England Patriots||21–17||13–7|
|Total Super Bowls won:||4|
The Giants have won five NFC Championship Games, including two in overtime in 2007 and 2011.
|1986||Bill Parcells||East Rutherford, NJ||Washington Redskins||17–0||17–2|
|1990||Bill Parcells||San Francisco, CA||San Francisco 49ers||15–13||16–3|
|2000||Jim Fassel||East Rutherford, NJ||Minnesota Vikings||41–0||14–5|
|2007||Tom Coughlin||Green Bay, WI||Green Bay Packers||23–20 (OT)||14–6|
|2011||Tom Coughlin||San Francisco, CA||San Francisco 49ers||20–17 (OT)||13–7|
|Total NFC Championships won:||5|
Logos and uniforms
With over 80 years of team history, the Giants have used numerous uniforms and logos, while maintaining a consistent identity. The Giants' logos include several incarnations of a giant quarterback preparing to throw a football, a lowercase "ny", and stylized versions of the team nickname.
Giants' jerseys are traditionally blue or red (or white with blue or red accents), and their pants alternate between white and gray. Currently, the Giants wear home jerseys that are solid blue with white block numbering, gray pants with three thin non-contiguous red/blue/red stripes on the pant legs, and solid blue socks. For this they gained their most renowned nickname, "Big Blue". For road uniforms, they wear a white jersey with red block numbering and red "Northwestern" stripes on the sleeves, gray pants with three thin non-contiguous red/blue/red stripes on the pant legs, and solid red socks. The Giants' current helmet is metallic blue with white block numbers, frontally mounted and base mounted on either side of a red stripe running down the center. (The Giants, along with the Pittsburgh Steelers, are one of only two teams in the National Football League to have the players' uniform numbers on the front and back of the helmets.) The helmet is adorned on both sides with the stylized white lower case "ny" logo and features a gray facemask. These uniforms are essentially a modernization of the uniforms the team wore from 1954–1963. Additionally, the Giants had until the '09–'10 season a third jersey which recalled the Giants' solid red home jerseys from the early 50's: a solid red alternate with white block numbers. These jerseys were used a total of four times, but have since been retired. They were used once in 2004 against the Philadelphia Eagles and in three consecutive years – 2005, 2006, and 2007 – against the Dallas Cowboys.
Ownerships, financial history and fan base
The Giants have had a long and, at times, turbulent financial history. The Giants were founded by Tim Mara with an investment of US$500 in 1925 and became one of the first teams in the then five-year-old NFL. To differentiate themselves from the baseball team of the same name, they took the name "New York Football Giants", which they still use as their legal corporate name.
Although the Giants were successful on the field in their initial seasons, their financial status was a different story. Overshadowed by baseball, boxing, and college football, professional football was not a popular sport in 1925. The Giants were in dire financial straits until the 11th game of the season when Red Grange and the Chicago Bears came to town, attracting over 73,000 fans. This gave the Giants a much needed influx of revenue, and perhaps altered the history of the franchise. The following year, Grange and his agent formed a rival league and stationed a competing team, led by Grange, in New York. Though the Giants lost $50,000 that season, the rival league folded and was subsumed into the NFL. Following the 1930 season, Mara transferred ownership of the team over to his two sons to insulate the team from creditors, and by 1946, he had given over complete control of the team to them. Jack, the older son, controlled the business aspects, while Wellington controlled the on-field operations. After their initial struggles the Giants financial status stabilized, and they led the league in attendance several times in the 1930s and 1940s.
By the early 1960s, the Giants had firmly established themselves as one of the league's biggest attractions. However, rather than continuing to receive their higher share of the league television revenue, the Mara sons pushed for equal sharing of revenue for the benefit of the entire league. Revenue sharing is still practiced in the NFL today, and is credited with strengthening the league. After their struggles in the latter half of the 1960s and the entire 1970s, the Giants hired an outsider, George Young, to run the football operations for the first time in franchise history. The Giants' on-field product and business aspects improved rapidly following the move.
In 1991, Tim Mara, grandson of the founder, was struggling with cancer and sold his half of the team to Bob Tisch for a reported $80 million. This marked the first time in franchise history the team had not been solely owned by the Mara family. In 2005, Wellington Mara, who had been with the team since its inception in 1925 when he worked as a ball boy, died at the age of 89. His death was followed two weeks later by the death of Tisch. In 2015, Wellington's widow and Giants co-owner Ann died due to complications from a head injury suffered in a fall. She was 85 years old.
In 2010, MetLife Stadium opened, replacing Giants Stadium. The new stadium is a 50/50 partnership between the Giants and Jets, and while the stadium is owned by the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority on paper, the two teams jointly built the stadium using private funds, and administer it jointly through New Meadowlands Stadium Corporation. The Giants had previously planned a $300 million renovation to the Meadowlands, before deciding in favor of the new stadium which was originally estimated to cost approximately $600 million, before rising to an estimated cost of one billion dollars. One advantage gained by owning the stadium is that the teams saved considerable money in tax payments. The teams leased the land from the state at a cost of $6.3 million per year. The state paid for all utilities, including the $30 million needed to install them.
The Giants are currently owned and operated by John Mara and Steve Tisch. Forbes magazine estimated the value of the team in 2012 to be $1.3 billion. This ranks the New York Giants as the fourth most valuable franchise in the NFL and the ninth most valuable professional sports franchise in the world. The value has steadily increased from $288 million in 1998, to their current value. The magazine estimated their revenue in 2006 at $182 million, of which $46 million came from gate receipts. Operating income was $26.9 million, and player salary was $102 million. Current major sponsors include Gatorade, Anheuser Busch, Toyota, and Verizon Wireless. Recent former sponsors include Miller Brewing and North Fork Bank. Luxury suites, retail and game day concessions at the new stadium are provisioned and operated by global hospitality giant Delaware North Companies. Giants average ticket price is $72.
The Giants draw their fans from the New York metropolitan area. Since their move to New Jersey in 1976, fans from each state have claimed the team as their own. In January 1987, shortly before the team won Super Bowl XXI, then New York City mayor Ed Koch labeled the team "foreigners" and said they were not entitled to a ticker-tape parade in New York City. On February 5, 2008, the city, under mayor Michael Bloomberg, threw a ticker tape parade in honor of the Giants' Super Bowl XLII victory at the Canyon of Heroes in lower Manhattan. New York City held another ticker tape parade on February 7, 2012, in honor of the Giants' Super Bowl XLVI victory. According to a team spokesman, in 2001, 52 percent of the Giants' season ticket-holders lived in New Jersey. Most of the remaining ticket holders lived in New York State with some coming from other states.
Through the lean years of the 1960s and 1970s the Giants, in spite of a 17-year-long playoff drought, still accumulated a 20-year-long waiting list for season tickets. It has been estimated that the Giants have a waiting list of 135,000 people, the largest of any franchise.
The rivalry between the New York Giants and the Philadelphia Eagles is one of the oldest in the NFL, dating back to 1933. The two teams have frequently fought for playoff contention, NFC East titles, and respect. While the Giants have dominated this rivalry throughout most of its history, the series began to even in the 1980s, with the series lead to the Eagles 22–21 through the 1990s and 2000s. The Giants currently lead the series 81–72–2. The two teams have met four times in the postseason, with each team winning two games. Three of those four playoff meetings were held in the 2000s decade. New York City and Philadelphia have a strong geographic rivalry, as seen in other professional sports such as the Mets-Phillies rivalry in Major League Baseball, and the Flyers-Rangers and Devils-Flyers rivalries in the National Hockey League.
The Giants have an old and storied rivalry with the Redskins, dating back to 1932. While this rivalry is typically given less significance than the rivalries with the Eagles and Cowboys, there have been periods of great competition between the two. In the 1980s the Giants and Redskins clashed as both struggled against each other for division titles and even Super Bowl Championships. Most notable among these is the 1986 NFC Championship game in which the Giants defeated the Redskins 17–0 to earn their first ever trip to the Super Bowl. Wellington Mara always felt this was the Giants oldest and truest rival, and after passing away in 2005, the Giants honored their longtime owner by defeating the Redskins 36–0 at home. The Giants lead this series 91–63–4.
The Giants have maintained a fierce divisional rivalry with the Dallas Cowboys since the Cowboys first began play in 1960. The two teams have a combined nine Super Bowl victories between them, and have played many games in which the NFC East title was at stake. The rivalry is unique among professional sports as it is the only divisional rivalry between sports teams from New York City and Dallas, partially due to the large distance between the two cities. The Cowboys currently lead the regular season series 62–43–2, while the Giants hold the lone playoff victory between the two teams, held at the conclusion of the 2007 season.
San Francisco 49ers
Despite never being in the same division, the Giants and 49ers have developed a heated rivalry over the years. The two teams have met eight times in the playoffs (including two NFC Championship Games, both won by New York) since 1982, which is the most of any two teams in that span. The Giants lead the overall series 20-19, but the postseason series is tied, 4–4.
New York Jets
The Giants and Jets have the only intracity rivalry in the NFL, made even more unusual by sharing a stadium. They have met annually in the preseason since 1969. Since 2011, this meeting has been known as the "MetLife Bowl", after the naming sponsor of the teams' stadium. Regular season matchups between the teams occur once every four years, as they follow the NFL scheduling formula for interconference games. Since the two teams play each other so infrequently in the regular season, some, including players on both teams, have questioned whether the Giants and Jets have a real rivalry. A memorable regular season game was in 1988, when the Giants faced off against the Jets in the last game of the season, needing a victory to make the playoffs. The Jets played spoiler, however, beating the Giants 27–21 and ruining the latter's playoff hopes. A different scenario unfolded during the penultimate regular season game of 2011 as the "visiting" Giants defeated the Jets 29–14. The victory simultaneously helped eliminate the Jets from playoff contention and propel the Giants to their own playoff run and eventual win in Super Bowl XLVI. The Giants led the overall regular season series 8–4 and have won the last five meetings.
Players of note
|New York Giants retired numbers|
|1||Ray Flaherty 1||E||1928–35|
|7||Mel Hein||C, LB||1931–45|
|14||Ward Cuff 3||HB, WB||1937–45|
|Y. A. Tittle 3||QB||1961–64|
|16||Frank Gifford||HB, WR||1952–64|
|32||Al Blozis 2||OT||1942–44|
|40||Joe Morrison||RB, WR||1959–72|
- 1 Retired in 1935, this was the first number to be retired by any team in major league sports.
- 2 Posthumous honor.
- 3 The number 14 was retired in honor of Ward Cuff in 1946. Y.A. Tittle requested 14 after the Giants traded for him in 1961, and it was retired a second time in 1964 at the conclusion of Tittle's playing career.
Pro Football Hall of Famers
In the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the Giants boast the second-most enshrined members with 29. Tim Mara, Mel Hein, Pete Henry, Cal Hubbard and Jim Thorpe were a part of the original class of inductees in 1963, while Defensive End Michael Strahan, the most recent Giant inducted, was a part of the Class of 2014. Numerous members, including Larry Csonka, Ray Flaherty, Joe Guyon, Pete Henry, Arnie Herber, Cal Hubbard, Tom Landry, Don Maynard, Hugh McElhenny, and Jim Thorpe were at one time associated with the New York Giants, but they were inducted largely based on their careers with other teams.
|New York Giants Hall of Famers|
|17||Red Badgro||TE/DE||1930–1935||1981||–||Tim Mara||Owner and founder||1925–1959||1963|
|79||Rosey Brown||T||1953–1965||1975||–||Wellington Mara||Owner/Administrator||1937–2005||1997|
|53||Harry Carson||LB||1976–1988||2006||13||Don Maynard||WR||1958||1987|
|39||Larry Csonka||FB||1976–1978||1987||13||Hugh McElhenny||RB||1963||1970|
|1||Ray Flaherty||E||1928–1935||1976||55||Steve Owen||T
|11||Joe Guyon||RB||1927||1978||92||Michael Strahan||DE||1993–2007||2014|
|7||Mel Hein||C||1931–1945||1966||50||Ken Strong||HB/FB/K||1933–1935,1939,
|55||Pete Henry||OT||1927||1963||10||Fran Tarkenton||QB||1967–1971||1986|
|38||Arnie Herber||QB||1944–1945||1963||56||Lawrence Taylor||LB||1981–1993||1999|
|41,60||Cal Hubbard||T||1927–1928, 1936||1966||31||Jim Thorpe||RB, DB||1925||1963|
|70||Sam Huff||LB||1956–1963||1982||14||Y. A. Tittle||QB||1961–1964||1971|
|49||Tom Landry||DB/P||1950–1955||1982||45||Emlen Tunnell||DB||1948–1958||1967|
|4||Tuffy Leemans||FB||1936–1943||1990||73||Arnie Weinmeister||DE||1950–1953||1984|
Ring of Honor
The New York Giants unveiled their own Ring of Honor on October 3, 2010 during halftime of their Sunday Night Football matchup with the Chicago Bears. John Mara had long wished to create a Giants Ring of Honor and Hall of Fame to honor Giants who helped the franchise achieve each of their championships, and the building of MetLife Stadium resulted in the realization of that ambition. The organization had an inaugural induction class of 30 including players, coaches, owners and executives that have had a great impact on the organization. While the entire list of inductees was not revealed until the actual induction, the organization did confirm about a week before the ceremony that Phil Simms, Bill Parcells, Michael Strahan, Tiki Barber, Frank Gifford and Pete Gogolak would all be inducted.
|New York Giants Ring of Honor|
|Carl Banks||LB||58||1984–1992||1986, 1990||2011|
|Mark Bavaro||TE||89||1985–1990||1986, 1990||2011|
|Mel Hein||C/LB||7||1931–1945||1934, 1938||2010|
|Jim Lee Howell||End/Head Coach||21,81||1937–1942,1946–1947,1954–1960||1938, 1956||2010|
|Jack Mara||Owner||—||1925–1965||1927, 1934, 1938, 1956||2010|
|Tim Mara||Owner||—||1925–1959||1927, 1934, 1938, 1956||2010|
|Wellington Mara||Ball Boy/Executive/Owner||—||1925–2005||1927, 1934, 1938, 1956, 1986, 1990||2010|
|Steve Owen||OT/Head Coach||6,9,12, 36, 44, 50, 55||1926–1953||1927, 1934, 1938||2010|
|Bill Parcells||Linebacker Coach/Defensive Coordinator/Head Coach||—||1979,1981–1990||1986, 1990||2010|
|Phil Simms||QB||11||1979–1993||1986, 1990||2010|
|Lawrence Taylor||LB||56||1981–1993||1986, 1990||2010|
|Y. A. Tittle||QB||14||1961–1964||none||2010|
|Emlen Tunnell||DB/Scout/Assistant Head Coach||45||1948–1958,1963–1973||1956||2010|
|Brad Van Pelt||LB||10||1973–1983||none||2011|
|Alex Webster||FB/Head Coach||29||1955–1964,1969–1973||1956||2011|
|George Young||Executive||—||1979–1997||1986, 1990||2010|
NFL MVP award winners
|Giants MVP winners|
Super Bowl MVP award winners
|Giants Super Bowl MVP winners|
|XXI||Phil Simms #11||QB|
|XXV||Ottis Anderson #24||RB|
|XLII||Eli Manning #10||QB|
|XLVI||Eli Manning #10||QB|
First-round draft picks
|Recent first-round draft picks|
|2004||Philip Rivers||North Carolina State||QB|
|2006||Mathias Kiwanuka||Boston College||DE|
|2008||Kenny Phillips||Miami (FL)||DB|
|2009||Hakeem Nicks||North Carolina||WR|
|2010||Jason Pierre-Paul||South Florida||DE|
|2012||David Wilson||Virginia Tech||RB|
|2014||Odell Beckham Jr.||LSU||WR|
|2015||Ereck Flowers||Miami (FL)||OT|
Coaches of note
New York Giants staff
Media, radio and television
|This section does not cite any references (sources). (November 2010)|
As of 2010, the Giants' flagship radio station is WFAN, with games simulcasted on WFAN-FM as of November 2012. Beginning in 2012, the Giants became WFAN's top priority during the entire football season; prior to that, games that conflicted with late season New York Mets baseball games in September and early October were moved to other CBS Radio owned stations. This arrangement only lasted for 2012, and the Mets received priority again in 2013. WFAN acquired the rights to New York Yankees games for 2014, and thus the Giants' schedule will be in conflict with them for the foreseeable future. Games that do conflict will air on the Yankees' former flagship, WCBS, for 2014.
Bob Papa on play-by-play and Carl Banks on color commentary are the Giants' radio broadcast team, with Howard Cross as the sideline reporter. When Papa is unavailable to call games Chris Carrino, WFAN's lead broadcaster for the Brooklyn Nets, substitutes for him. Games are carried over the New York Giants Radio Network over various stations in New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and (as of 2010) Mississippi.
Preseason telecasts not seen nationally air in the area on WNBC, with WWOR-TV serving as an overflow station for when WNBC is airing other programming such as the Summer Olympic Games. Papa and Banks call these games on television, with studio host Paul Dottino as Papa's substitute. WWOR will also air any Giants broadcast that is carried by ESPN, as per the local carriage rules. When the Giants play on NFL Network, those games will be carried by WPIX-TV unless they fall within CBS' broadcast window for Thursday night games, with those games airing locally on WCBS-TV.
The Giants' public address announcer at MetLife Stadium is Jim Hall, who for years was Bob Sheppard's substitute at Yankee Stadium due to their very similar voices. Hall took over the Giants PA job after Sheppard elected to leave the position in 2005 to focus solely on his Yankee Stadium duties.
WFAN has produced the Giants' radio broadcasts since 1995, but has not always aired them on the station. For 1995, then-Giants flagship WOR continued to carry the games as they had for the previous two seasons. In 1996 the games were simulcast on WFAN and WOR, which caused some conflict as at the time, WFAN was the radio flagship of the New York Jets as well. To remedy the situation, beginning the next year WFAN moved the Giants' radio broadcasts to the FM dial and sister station WNEW-FM, where they remained until the end of the 1999 season. In 2000 WFAN lost the Jets' radio contract to WABC and the Giants moved back to WFAN where they have been ever since.
The Giants' longtime radio home was WNEW, where games aired from the mid-1950s until 1993 when the station was bought by Bloomberg L.P. and changed its format. Marty Glickman teamed with Al DeRogatis for a long stretch beginning in the early 1960s on WNEW. Chip Cipolla and later Sam Huff joined Glickman after DeRogatis left to join Curt Gowdy on NBC. After the WNEW split, games began airing on WOR. Glickman moved to the crosstown Jets in 1973 and was succeeded by Marv Albert. Jim Gordon succeeded Albert in 1977, beginning an 18-year tenure as the Giants' play-by-play voice. Meanwhile, Dick Lynch took over as color analyst in 1976 and continued in that role through 2007, with his last game being Super Bowl XLII, and retired following the season due to his advancing leukemia, which took his life in September 2008.
Eventually Gordon and Lynch were joined by Karl Nelson, a former lineman for the Giants. Gordon and Nelson were fired after the 1994 season, after which Papa took over the play-by-play (after being studio host) and led a two-man booth with Lynch. Dave Jennings joined the broadcast team in 2002 following his firing by the Jets, with whom he had worked since his 1987 retirement from the NFL. Jennings was moved to the pregame show after the 2006 season and was replaced by Carl Banks, leaving broadcasting altogether in 2008 due to his ongoing battle with Parkinson's disease that he lost in 2013.
After WFAN began airing games Richard Neer served as pregame and postgame host. He was replaced by Sid Rosenberg, who was in turn fired by the station due to troubles and replaced by Chris Carlin. Carlin left in 2008 to focus full-time on his duties as SNY studio host and Rutgers athletics radio voice and was replaced by WWOR sports reporter and former WFAN host Russ Salzberg, who cohosted with Roman Oben after Jennings left. WEPN Giants beat reporter Paul Dottino was hired by WFAN to host the pregame show for 2009 and continues to be a part of the program. Anita Marks has hosted the pre- and post- game shows since 2010, co-hosting with Dottino for home games and Oben for away games.
The Giants were carried on the DuMont Network, then CBS (New York's Channel 2) in the early TV days of the NFL, when home games were blacked out within a 75-mile radius of New York City. Chris Schenkel was their play-by-play announcer in that early era when each team was assigned its own network voice on its regional telecasts. At the time, there were few if any true national telecasts until the NFL championship game, which was carried by NBC. Schenkel was joined by Jim McKay, later Johnny Lujack through the 1950s and the early 1960s. As Giants players retired to the broadcast booth in the early and 1960s, first Pat Summerall, then Frank Gifford took the color analyst slot next to Schenkel. As the 1970 merger of the NFL and AFL approached, CBS moved to a more generic announcer approach and Schenkel was off the broadcasts.
Giants regular-season Sunday telecasts moved to Fox when that network took over NFC telecasts in 1994 and are carried locally by WNYW.
WCBS-TV and WPIX were previously home to Giants preseason telecasts in the 1990s, with WPIX serving as the Giants' (and Jets') long time preseason home. After the NFC rights were lost by CBS, the Giants followed the conference's broadcast rights to WNYW. WWOR became the Giants' flagship TV station in the late '90s, and stayed so up until WNBC took over rights in 2005.
When the Giants first moved to WNYW, Mike Breen was their preseason play-by-play man. Sam Rosen was the television voice for some time afterward, except for two years when Curt Menefee (then of WNYW) was the voice. When the games moved to WWOR, Rosen regained the position and held it until 2004. Former Giant receiver Phil McConkey became the early season analyst after his retirement and stayed in the booth for many years.
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- Neft, David S.; Cohen, Richard M.; Korch, Rick (1994). The Complete History of Professional Football from 1892 to the Present. New York: St. Martin's Press. p. 113. ISBN 0-312-11435-4.
- Steinbreder, John (1999). Giants: 75 Years of Championship Football (second ed.). Dallas: Taylor Publishing Co. ISBN 0-87833-159-X.
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