Bradshaw: Giants 'learned a lot' from loss to 49ers

January 21, 2012, 2:45 am
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As expected, Ahmad Bradshaw and his aching foot returned to practice Friday for the New York Giants, two days before the NFC championship game at Candlestick Park against the 49ers.And though he did not play in the regular-season meeting on Nov. 13 between the two teams, Bradshaw believed the Giants came out of the 27-20 loss all the more prepared."Right now, we have a lot of confidence," Bradshaw, who has made a custom of sitting out practice on Wednesdays and Thursdays before returning on Fridays, told reporters. "We have a lot of guys that have been in this situation. We have a great gameplan going into it. Playing them the first time gave us a lot of ammo and we have things to use against them. If we can go out and execute, we will be fine.
"We learned a lot and we have a lot of stuff on film. I think our coaches handled what our gameplan is going to be and like I said, if we execute, we will be good."Bradshaw's 659 rushing yards led the Giants this season, though his 3.9-yards-per-carry average was a career-worst, and his 12 games played tied a career low. Still, his nine rushing touchdowns and two receiving scores were career highs."Ahmad's done a great job catching little passes and getting yardage, getting big plays," said quarterback Eli Manning. "He's just one of those players where you want to try to create touches for him, whether it's the run game or screens, little check-downs where good things seem to happen. He makes guys miss. If you can get the ball in his hands, good things usually happen."Bradshaw missed all of November due to injury but has averaged 4.0 yards per carry since returning, including the playoffs. And five of his TD's came in the regular season's final three weeks.The Giants have been on the road for all but one game since Christmas Eve, and are 4-0 in that span. So why should they brash Giants be afraid of the 49ers and their homefield advantage?"Our plan is to take their crowd out the game and that is just by making plays," Bradshaw said. "We had seven big plays last week and if we can stick to that routine, we can hopefully take their crowd out of it."But across from Bradshaw will be waiting the NFL's No. 1-ranked rush defense, which allowed a mere 77.2 yards on the ground per game this season."They are a great defense," Bradshaw said. "We just have to stick to our game plan. Linebacker-wise, they have great linebackers and a great DB corps. I just want to go out and play my game. We have a great plan and I think we will be fine."That is the plan in every game, to run the ball, especially because of how good we have been these last couple games running the ball."And the forecast for rain?"It doesn't matter what the conditions are," he said. "If it is a rainy game, hopefully we run the ball more. Just stick your cleats in and keep digging."