The strong preparation of the NFL kept the New York Giants final practice before Super Bowl XLVI on schedule despite a problem with one of the team buses.
The second of four buses carrying the team from the Downtown Marriott to the University of Indianapolis had to be replaced after engine problems. The NFL had a substitute bus on hand to deal with the issue and quickly got the players and coaches back en route. There was a delay of roughly five minutes between the first bus arriving and the second, third and fourth buses finishing the 5 1/2-mile journey.
The Giants went through a crisp, 48-minute walk-through practice with every player on the team in uniform and accounted for. The NBC Sports crew of Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Dick Ebersol, Fred Gaudelli and Drew Esocoff were on hand to observe, along with Lt. Col. Greg Gadson, the long-time friend of Giants wide receivers coach Mike Sullivan. Gadson was with the Giants throughout their playoff run to the title in the 2007 season.
Running back Ahmad Bradshaw showed barely a hint of soreness in his ankle as he went through all the scripted situations for the offense. In addition, safety Tyler Sash and defensive end Osi Umenyiora participated in the light-but-focused work.
“He looked fine, no soreness, nothing you could notice,” New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin said regarding Bradshaw. “This was all situational stuff, nothing unusual. It was a Saturday morning jog-thru, all situations.”
The Giants began the practice with approximately 10 minutes of work on special teams situations. The team then alternated offensive and defensive series with backup quarterback David Carr playing the role of Tom Brady for the scout team offense.
The Giants offense looked particularly sharp on its goal-line passing sets as it went through the motions of the final practice, finishing with the traditional victory formation. Coughlin said the team would meet again tonight from approximately 7:30 to 9:15 with a special teams meeting, followed by a team meeting to again review situations. The players will then be shown a three- to four-minute highlight video set to music to “get them in the right frame of mind,” said Coughlin, who will speak to the team after the video and before breaking for a team snack.
The players will be sequestered at the Downtown Marriott tonight. There will be brief meetings Sunday and then the players will be kept off their feet the rest of the day until taking the three-block ride from the hotel to Lucas Oil Stadium roughly three hours before the game.
— Written by Jason Cole, Pro Football Writers Of America