EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- As the New York Giants' receivers explained the lack of a successful passing game in Sunday's 24-21 loss to the Dallas Cowboys, they kept mentioning the other facet of the offense.
"We got the running game going, we got a lot of carries, they basically couldn't stop us with the running game," Victor Cruz said. "That's the way the game unfolded."
The Giants' running game had its way with Dallas' depleted defense as Andre Brown and Brandon Jacobs' combined for 202 yards and averaged 6.7 yards per carry in the Giants' loss. It's the team's most rushing yards since Oct. 7, 2012, and Brown set a career-high for the second time in three weeks.
"It was awesome to get that thing going and to be effective in the run game was a great deal," Brown said after rushing for 127 yards and averaging six yards a carry. "Came a little late. We had opportunities to put it in the end zone in the green area. Just hurts right now."
The Giants had a balanced offense Sunday, passing it 30 times and throwing it the same amount, but one could certainly argue the Giants should have gone to the running game more. Seemingly each time Jacobs and Brown touched the ball, massive holes opened up for the backs. The Giants' offensive line consistently won the battles in the trenches, and it made life easy for the backs.
The Giants' offense flowed better when they stuck with the running game, and the backs were instrumental in the scoring drives, including Brown scoring on the two-point conversion to tie the game at 21-21. There were times during the game when it was obvious the Giants were going to feed their backs until Dallas proved it could stop them, and Dallas just couldn't slow them down.
Jacobs' 75 yards were his most since Dec. 11, 2011, and his 37-yard run in the second quarter was his longest since Dec. 2010. That run was also the Giants' longest of the season.
"I think the offensive line was out there being very physical and pushing the guys back," Brown said.
Both Brown and Jacobs, for all their success, lamented the team's inability to score during its first two trips to the red zone, which played a large factor in the game's outcome. At the start of the second quarter, Brown rushed just once inside the 10 and the Giants settled for a field goal to make it 7-3.
On their next drive, the Giants had first-and-goal at the Dallas' 4, and Brown was tackled for a loss of six before an incomplete pass. On third down, Brown ran for five and the Giants kicked a field goal.
"It's always good to be able to control the line of scrimmage, get the clock going, but we got to put up more points," Jacobs said. "We are getting down in the green zone, we are getting down in that area, we have to score points."