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Giants' patchwork defense rises to occasion

Instead of making excuses, the Giants' injury-riddled defense made a lot of clutch plays against the Buccaneers, writes Len Pasquarelli.

Originally Published: January 6, 2008
By Len Pasquarelli | ESPN.com

TAMPA, Fla. -- Beset by injuries, and playing without three starters, the New York Giants' defense determined before Sunday's wild-card game that it was going to make plays, not excuses.

And in a 24-14 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the patchwork unit did just that.

During a triumph that advanced the Giants to the second stanza of the playoffs for the first time since 2000 and a divisional-round matchup against the NFC East archrival Dallas Cowboys, the defense ...

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