An unpopular title? Yes. 

The reality of what will happen in San Francisco? Also Yes.

As fans, we tend to build strong emotional attachments to our teams. However, emotions have to be put aside when the raw data is overwhelming. Before I delve into the information and present my argument, the New York Giants have had a great season and have definitely exceeding expectations. However, their season will come to an end Sunday Night in San Francisco and here’s why:

Harbaugh Is Harbaugh

When I picked the Niners last week, I touched upon one statistic that has a ton of value: team efficiency. The team efficiency statistic measures the difference between turnovers forced and turnovers given away. The Niners had the league’s best efficiency rating (+33) while the Saints came in at (-3). San Francisco will face a Giant team that was a little bit better (+7) than the Saints, but some metrics that were unfavorable for the Saints, are also unfavorable for the Giants.

At home this season, the Niners have scored an average of 28.5 points per game, scoring at least 20 points in every home game. This isn’t good news for the Giants. The Giants were 3-3 in road games where they surrendered 20 or more points. The three losses? (Washington, New Orleans, and San Francisco). More concerning, the Giants gave up 20 or more points in seven of their nine road games. Rest assured San Fran faithful, the odds of the Niners reaching 20 points or more points in the game is quite good.

Can the Giant offense outscore the Niner offense? On paper, the Giants have better offensive personnel, but as we saw last week, that doesn’t always equate to wins. Ball control is critical in this game and that’s something that could hurt the Giants. The Giant offense is also more prone to creating turnovers, as well. 

To make things more difficult, the Giants have relied on turnovers to lead to scoring opportunities and the Niners just don’t turn the ball over. Alex Smith had the lowest interception percentage in the league, averaging an interception on just one percent of his throws! Overall, the Niners won the turnover battle in 15 of 17 games and have only committed one turnover over the last two months. Under Eli Manning, the Giants are 2-25 when losing the turnover battle on the road. 

Alike the Saints showed last week, a heavy down field throwing team like the Giants will have trouble against the Niners. The Niners have elite linebackers and an All-Pro corner in Charles Rogers who will make things extremely difficult for Eli and Co. The Niners defense features great ball hawks and gang tacklers, something the Giants must be wary of. With their great defensive players and ball-controlling offense, it’s easy to see why I like the Niners in this game.

It’s easy to argue the Any Given Sunday philsophy, but the data is stacking up very strongly against the Giants. Even the Greek Gods of Good Health and Prosperity are frowning upon the Giants.