By Ben Fractenberg
MANHATTAN — The New York Giants beat the Carolina Panthers Sunday 31-18 in the first regular season game ever played at the New Meadowlands stadium.
Quarterback Eli Manning threw three touchdowns and the team’s defense shut down the Panthers in the second half.
"This starts us off right with a new season and a new attitude," running back Ahmad Bradshaw told the Daily News. "We just wanted to put (last year) behind us. This is a new season, a new team. Just the fight in this team is way different than last year."
Manning threw for 263 yards and completed 20 of 30 passes, while the Giant’s defense held the Panther’s to just 89 rushing yards.
Wide Receiver Hakeem Nicks caught all three of Manning's touchdown passes. Running back Ahmad Bradshaw ran for 76 yards and touchdown on 20 carries for New York.
It was an important win for the Giants who are out to prove their uneven 2009 season was a fluke. New York went 3-8 in their last 11 games and lost in the first round of the playoffs to the Philadelphia Eagles last season.
"It was necessary," defensive end Osi Umenyiora told the News. "The way we closed out our last stadium was terrible, so we had to find a way to open up this one better."