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Giants must battle Eagles, bad memories

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- There are some games that a player never forgets.

Winning the Super Bowl in February 2008 was one that forever will bring a smile to the faces of New York Giants. Losing to the Philadelphia Eagles at the Meadowlands in December is one they will never live down.

How can anyone forget the Meadowlands Meltdown? The Giants had a 31-10 lead with less than eight minutes to play, and they not only lost the game, they managed to do it in regulation, squandering a chance to take over first place in the NFC East and costing themselves a playoff berth.

"Last year will linger with me until I die," Giants defensive captain Justin Tuck said.

The last play is just so memorable.

Giants rookie punter Matt Dodge failed to kick the ball out of bounds in the closing seconds and DeSean Jackson returned the punt 65 yards for a game-winning touchdown on the final play of regulation.

Eagles 38, Giants 31.

Do you remember Giants coach Tom Coughlin slamming his clipboard to the turf as Jackson whizzed by the Giants' bench?

The Giants (1-1) and Eagles (1-1) will meet Sunday with both tied with Dallas for second place in the division, a game behind surprising Washington (2-0).

Giants tight end Bear Pascoe said the loss last season will motivate New York, but most teammates were narrowing their focus to this week.

"If you let games stick with you, you are going to have a bad year," said safety Deon Grant, who has had the added distraction this week of being accused of faking an injury in Monday night's win over the Rams.

"If you're a smart player, and a professional, you deal with what you have to deal with in the offseason," he added. "I know you heard a lot about it because I heard a lot about it in the offseason. You prepare yourself for the season, to face those guys. This is our third game and this one we're prepared for."

Last year's loss isn't the only question facing the Giants. The Eagles have had their number in recent seasons, winning the last six games.

"It doesn't matter because if we won six in a row, I would still want to beat them," Tuck said. "Everybody puts emphasis on it, but the fact of the matter is that stuff is in the past. It is not going to help us prepare for today. That is what we are doing, we are putting that behind us and focusing on what we need to beat them this year. We can't beat them last year."


Super Bowl shuffle in D.C.

WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama is showing some love for his hometown Chicago Bears.

A White House official says the president is inviting members of the Bears 1985 Super Bowl championship team to the White House on Oct. 7.

Super Bowl champions are traditionally honored with a visit to the White House. But plans for the 1985 Bears to come to Washington were scrapped when the space shuttle Challenger exploded just days after their victory in January 1986.

Obama is an ardent fan of his hometown team. He somewhat begrudgingly hosted the Bears' rival, the Green Bay Packers, at the White House this year after their Super Bowl win.

The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because the event has not officially been announced.


Around the league

*Quarterback Matt Ryan was limited with a left knee injury for the second straight day. Ryan worked with the first-team offense, but No. 2 quarterback Chris Redman took snaps with Atlanta's starters, too.

*Jets All-Pro center Nick Mangold says his high ankle sprain is "getting there," but it appears the chances of him playing Sunday at Oakland are becoming slim. Jets coach Rex Ryan will make a decision today on his status.

*Marcus Pollard is adding one more line to his already amazing resume. Reality star. The former Colts tight end and 14-year NFL veteran with a flair for making spectacular catches, will join his wife, Amani, on one of the teams in this season's CBS show "The Amazing Race.

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