EXIT of the Day:
Hear this Here! EXIT 16s I-95, to Meadowlands, and Met Life Stadium, Near Secaucus, NJ
"On your right is the Meadowlands Sports Complex anchored by MetLife Stadium. Oddly it is the home to both the New York Jets and the New York Giants. And yet these New York teams play all their home games here in New Jersey, the Garden State, not the Empire State. In fact, th Buffalo Bills are the only team from New York who play games in New York. Maybe there is something about being an Empire state that you play in another state's territory. But I digress because New Jersey is happy to host these mega-buck franchises.
So Sports fans, now it is time for a Road Test. The winner will get a free coffee at the upcoming 7/Eleven off Exit 16. Now pay attention to the Fast Facts:
Known as the Big Blue Wrecking Crew, the New York Giants were one of five teams that joined the NFL in 1925. It is the only one of that group still existing. More impressive, 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 in 1986, 1990, 2007, and 2011, along with more championship appearances than any other team, with 19 overall appearances.
During their history, the Giants have featured 28 Hall of Fame players, including NFL Most Valuable Player (MVP) award winners Frank Gifford, Y. A. Tittle, and Lawrence Taylor. The team as a whole is occasionally referred to as the "Big Blue Wrecking Crew", even though this moniker originally refers to the Giants defensive unit during the 80s and early 90s.
The team's heated rivalry with the Philadelphia Eagles is the oldest rivalry in the NFL, dating all the way back to 1933.
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. After a disappointing fourth season (1928) owner Wellington Mara Senior — whose family still owns the team — pulled a typically New York kinda Wall Street maneuver to improve his struggling squad. He bought the Detroit Wolverines, principally to acquire star quarterback Benny Friedman. Then he merged the two under the Giants name. In so doing, he also managed to eliminate a competing team, but who was counting?
In 1930, there were still many who questioned the quality of the professional game, claiming that college "amateurs" played better. In December 1930, the Giants played a team of Notre Dame All Stars at the Polo Grounds in Harlem to raise money for the unemployed of New York City at the height of the Depression. It was also an opportunity to establish the prestige of the pro game.
Legendary Notre Dame coach, Knute Rockne reassembled his Four Horsemen along with the stars of his 1924 Championship squad and told them to score early, then defend. Rockne thought little of pro football and expected an easy win. But from the beginning it was a one-way contest, with Benny 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 pro ball. It also was the last game the legendary Rockne ever coached; three months later Knute was killed in an airplane crash. So... better not bad mouth the Giants or it may be bad karma.
Finally, in the 1980’s two Hall Of Fame members of the Wrecking Crew are credited with initiating the now common Gatorade Shower of the victorious coach: Harry Carson and Lawrence Taylor.
Now for the Road Test. What little mill town in Connecticut had a pro Football Team in 1925?
You have 3 seconds to answer. Three… two… and one. If you said New Britain, get over to the right and get ready to receive your free coffee courtesy of 7/Eleven.
And tell 'em RoadSpoke’s Wrecking Crew sent you!
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