- WHEN: Sunday, Sept. 15; 4:25 p.m. EDT.
- WHERE: MetLife Stadium; East Rutherford, N.J.
- TV: CBS.
- SERIES RECORD: Tied at five apiece (Giants lead 1-0 in the postseason).
- JOHN FOX'S RECORD: 2-3 (1-0 in the postseason).
- PEYTON MANNING'S RECORD: 3-1.
- SERIES STREAK: The Giants have won three straight at home over the Broncos dating back to 1986.
- LAST TIME: Broncos 26, Giants 6; Nov. 26, 2009. In the first Thanksgiving Day home game in Broncos history, Denver never trailed, cruising to a win that snapped a four-game losing streak and temporarily revived hopes of a postseason bid in Josh McDaniels' only full season as coach. The Giants didn't cross midfield until 4:02 into the second half; by that time, they trailed 16-0.
- LAST TIME IN EAST RUTHERFORD: Giants 24, Broncos 23; Oct. 23, 2005. The Broncos' only loss in a 10-game stretch came in agonizing fashion, as Eli Manning led two fourth-quarter touchdown drives to overturn a 23-10 Denver lead. Manning's final pass sealed the Broncos' fate; he found Amani Toomer for a 2-yard score on third-and-goal with 10 seconds remaining. The Broncos had plenty of chances, and might have avoided defeat had Jason Elam not missed wide right o a 49-yard field-goal attempt with 5:24 remaining. Elam wouldn't miss another field-goal attempt for two months, but that was of little consolation as the Broncos saw a five-game winning streak end.
NOTING THE GAME:
- Oh, there are brothers quarterbacking these teams? You don't say …
Anyhow, both Peyton and Eli Manning will remind everyone in the days preceding this clash that they're facing an opposing defense, not each other. Still, big brother has the upper hand in the head-to-head series, leading the Colts to a pair of wins over the Eli-led Giants (26-21 in 2006 and 38-14 in 2010). Unless they meet in the Super Bowl, this seems likely to represent the end of the Peyton-Eli rivalry, so savor this duel. The Broncos and Giants are not scheduled to meet again until 2017 -- one year after Peyton's contract expires. Eli's contract expires in 2015.
- John Fox is still highly regarded in Giants circles for his five-season stint as defensive coordinator (1997-2001), which propelled him to the head-coaching ranks 12 months after he helped lead the Giants to an unexpected NFC Championship while working under Jim Fassel, a former Broncos offensive coordinator who guided the Giants to three playoff appearances in seven seasons (1997-2003) there.
- Fox joined the 100-win coaches club last year (94 postseason, six postseason), and is one of just six active head coaches in the fraternity. Another is Giants head coach Tom Coughlin. Fox will face four of the other five 100-win coaches in 2013; the only one he'll miss will be Rams coach Jeff Fisher.
- Close games are the norm in New Jersey. The last four games between the clubs there -- all at the since-demolished Giants Stadium -- were decided by a combined 13 points. Denver's 14-9 win on Oct. 26, 1980 is the largest margin of victory for either team when they've played in the Garden State. New York posted a 29-17 home win over the Broncos on Nov. 5, 1972, but that game was played at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx; Giants Stadium was still four years away from opening its doors.
- Remember Andre Brown? The former N.C. State running back had a few sips of coffee with the Broncos in 2010 -- including two separate stints each on the practice squad and the 53-man roster -- but found a home with the Giants last year, averaging 5.3 yards per carry and scoring eight times on just 73 rushes. Brown's success and the potential of 2012 first-round pick David Wilson were the reasons why the Giants were willing to part ways with leading rusher Ahmad Bradshaw, who eventually signed with the Colts. Brown isn't the only ex-Bronco in Big Blue's running back corps; 2008 draft pick Ryan Torain will also fight for a backup spot.
- The quarterback connections between the teams don't stop with Peyton and Eli Manning. Giants backup David Carr started four games for John Fox in Carolina in 2007, and one of the four quarterbacks in Giants camp is Curtis Painter, who backed up
Peyton Manningin 2009 and 2010 and started eight games for the Colts in 2011.
- New York's defense collapsed in 2012, finishing the season 31st with declining stats across the board -- particularly in the pass rush, where their sack total dropped from 48 in 2011 to 33. They made no attempt to re-sign Osi Umenyiora, their second-leading sacker last year, and instead will count on a return to form by Justin Tuck and Jason Pierre-Paul to help pick up the slack. The wild card in the equation is third-round pick Damontre Moore, who was
Von Miller's successor at Texas A&M. How well Moore adjusts will be crucial. The Giants have said they plan to use him as a hybrid end and linebacker -- much like the Broncos use Miller.
- A different quarterback has started for the Broncos in each of their last four games against the Giants: John Elway in 1998, Brian Griese in 2001, Jake Plummer in 2005 and Kyle Orton in 2009. Assuming Peyton Manning remains healthy, that will become five of five this year and likely six of six with the teams' 2017 duel in Denver.
- This will be the first of three 2013 games the Broncos play in the Eastern Time Zone. Denver has won consecutive games in that time zone after losing 10 of 11 (including a playoff loss) from November 2009 through October 2012.
- Denver hopes to snap a three-game losing streak in road openers.