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Manning, Madonna, Brady: A Breakdown Of Super Bowl XLVI

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The New England Patriots will face the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLVI. (AP Photo) The New England Patriots will face the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLVI. (AP Photo)
Giants quarterback Eli Manning practices with the team in preparation for Sunday's Super Bowl. (AP Photo) Giants quarterback Eli Manning practices with the team in preparation for Sunday's Super Bowl. (AP Photo)
Madonna along with Cirque du Solei and Nicki Minaj will perform during halftime of the Super Bowl. (AP Photo) Madonna along with Cirque du Solei and Nicki Minaj will perform during halftime of the Super Bowl. (AP Photo)
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady throws a pass during practice. (AP Photo) Patriots quarterback Tom Brady throws a pass during practice. (AP Photo)
Windows above the entrance to Lucas Oil Stadium dawn this year's super bowl logo. (AP Photo) Windows above the entrance to Lucas Oil Stadium dawn this year's super bowl logo. (AP Photo)
OKLAHOMA CITY -

Whether you are a die-hard football fan, you watch a game occasionally, or you haven't watched a game all season, chances are you will tune in to Sunday's Super Bowl or at least watch the commercials.

Either way, we've highlighted some of the need to know basics for the game along with some interesting tidbits that might impress your friends at the local Super Bowl party.

Super Bowl XLVI (those are roman numerals that stand for 46) is set for Sunday Feb. 5 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana. Kickoff is scheduled for 5:30 CST.

The game pairs the American Football Conference (AFC) champion New England Patriots against the National Football Conference (NFC) champion the New York Giants.

New England is currently favored by three points entering the matchup.

Since it is an even numbered Super Bowl year, the AFC champion Patriots are designated as the home team for the contest.

Earlier this season, the two teams met in week nine of the regular season. In that game Eli Manning threw a game winning pass to Jake Ballard with just seconds remaining. New York went on to win 24-20.

The Patriots and Giants met once before in Super Bowl XLII in 2008 when the Giants Defeated New England 17-14. Both quarterbacks, New York's Eli Manning, and New England's Tom Brady led their team in 2008 and both return to this year's big game.

Now it's time for a closer look at the two teams.'

New England Patriots:

New England enters the game with a 13-3 season record.

The Patriots have won 10 straight games since losing to Giants 24-20 in week nine of the regular season. That loss also ended New England's mark of 20 straight wins at Gillette Stadium.

The Patriots defeated the Denver Broncos 45-10 in the divisional round, and last week narrowly defeated the Baltimore Ravens 23-20 in the conference championship. During that game, Brady was less than stellar throwing for 239 yards, with two interceptions and, for the first time in 36 games, no touchdown passes.

This is the seventh Super Bowl for the Patriots who are 3-3 in title games. They won in 2001, 2003 and 2004 seasons.

The Patriot offense ranks second overall as well as second in the passing game and No. 20 in the rushing game.

This post season, Brady has completed 40 of his 70 attempts for 602 yards and six touchdowns. Brady has 16 career postseason wins and overall playoff record of 16-5, the best postseason winning percentage by QB with at least 15 starts.

Oklahoma City native, and pro-bowl receiver Wes Welker is one of the Patriots strengths on offense. On the season he has 122 catches for 1,569 yards and nine touchdowns. Welker was nursing a knee injury last week, but it's the Super Bowl, so unless something else major happens, he is expected to play.

02/03/12 Related Story: Wes Welker-From OKC Student To Super Bowl Star

Besides, Welker, tight ends Rob Gronkowski Aaron Hernandez are big factors offensively for New England.

Gronkowski has 90 catches for 1,327 yards and 17 touchdowns for New England. He has also been nursing a high ankle sprain this week, but is expected to be ready to go Sunday. Hernandez has racked up 79 receptions for 910 yards and seven touchdowns this season.

Head coach Coach Bill Belichick is 17-6 in the playoffs.

New York Giants:

The Giants enter the game at 9-7 on the year and have won the last five games straight.

The Giants stomped wildcard Atlanta 24-2 and then went on to win the division with a 37-20 win over Green Bay.

It took overtime to decide the conference champion, but the Giants pulled out the 20-17 victory over San Francisco thanks to a 31-yard field goal by Lawrence Tynes in the extra period.

The Giants are 3-1 in Super Bowls, winning in 1986, 1990 and 2007 seasons.

Eli Manning is competing for his second Super Bowl title and if he and the Giants win it would give Eli one more championship trophy than older brother Peyton who is the quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts.

The Giants offense is fifth overall in passing yards with 295.9 while the rush is ranked No. 32 with 89.2 yards. Overall New York comes in at No. 8.

In this year's post season, Manning has completed 76-of-123 for 923 yards and eight touchdowns.

Ahmad Bradshaw continues to shine for the Giants. He has recorded 171 carries for 659 yards and nine touchdowns. Not far behind is Brandon Jacobs with 152 carries for 571 yards and seven touchdowns.

In the passing game, Victor Cruz paces the Giants with 82 receptions for 1536 yards and nine touchdowns. Hakeem Nicks is the second leading receiver with 76 catches for 1192 yards and seven touchdowns.

The New York defense has come up big this season and will have to buckle down on the pass rush and limit the Patriots receiving in order to win the game. The Giants will have to find a way defensively to limit the big three of Welker, Hernandez and Gronkowski.

Entertainment:

Kelly Clarkson will sing the Star Spangled Banner.

Madonna and Cirque du Solei will perform at halftime. Nicki Minaj is also slated to be a part of the halftime show.

For those who can't be in front of the TV during the big game, this year's Super Bowl XLVI will be live streamed on Verizon mobile phones through the NFL mobile app. As well as streamed online at NFL.com.

Random Tidbits:

-This is the first Super Bowl to be played in Indianapolis.

-This is the first time in the history of the game it will be played in consecutive years in a stadium with a retractable roof.

- This is the first Super Bowl with quarterbacks who have each won a Super Bowl MVP award.

-Tickets for this year's Super Bowl sold for anywhere between $2,000 and $15,000 per ticket.

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