Sunday, January 22, 2012
Just in time for kickoff...
By Dan Graziano
SAN FRANCISCO -- Just a little bit of traffic here today. Took two and a half hours to get to this stadium from downtown San Francisco. Which is too long. But I am in place now and ready to keep you updated on the goings-on in this NFC Championship Game between the New York Giants and the San Francisco 49ers.
The injury news is all on the San Francisco side, where wide receiver and kick returner Ted Ginn Jr. is inactive due to a knee injury but tight end Delanie Walker is playing for the first time since breaking his jaw in Week 16. The Ginn news is troubling for a 49ers team that led the NFL in average starting field position. San Francisco has a huge advantage over the Giants in the return game, but Ginn's absence shrinks that somewhat. Having Walker back, however, along with star No. 1 tight end Vernon Davis, should allow the 49ers to run their offense the way they like to run it, with the ability to set the perimeter and help keep the Giants' pass rushers off of quarterback Alex Smith.
The Giants' inactive list offers no surprises. I'm pretty sure it's the same group that's been inactive for the past three games. The Giants are as healthy as they've been all year on both sides of the ball. Running back Ahmad Bradshaw, who missed a couple of practices with a bad foot, as he's been doing for weeks, is active and listed as the starter.
Weather? Yeah, it's windy and gloomy out here by the San Francisco Bay, and it's been raining off and on all day. It's raining right now and the field is wet and slippery, so watch to see if that affects the speedy players in the defensive front for either of these teams.
I'm here, Mike Sando is here, a whole bunch of folks from ESPNNewYork.com are here. We'll be live-chatting the game, so please come join us. Should be fun.