Friday, October 26, 2012
W2W4: Giants at Cowboys
By Ohm Youngmisuk
The Giants are headed to Dallas -- where they practically own Cowboys Stadium, as much as Jerry Jones does.
They are 3-0 at Jones’ $1.2 billion stadium. If the Giants can make it four straight, they’ll not only disappoint Jones -- who told Dallas fans to come watch the Cowboys "beat the New York Giants' ass" earlier this summer -- but they will put themselves in solid position heading into the second half of the regular season.
Here are five things to watch for on Sunday in Dallas:
Stay the Mann:Eli Manning saves some of his best games for the Cowboys, especially in Dallas. He has won four of his last five games in Dallas, and has six 300-yard games in his career against the Cowboys -– more than he has against any other team.
In the new Cowboys Stadium, Manning has passed for at least 306 yards and two touchdowns in all three of his games. Dallas did hold Manning to 213 yards and one touchdown in the season opener. If the Cowboys’ improved secondary is the real deal, it will find a way to slow down Manning in Dallas.
The Giants can’t afford to let Romo make plays with his legs and right arm. Romo burned the Giants with three touchdowns back in September.
No more big plays:Kevin Ogletree introduced himself to the Giants and the country with eight catches for 114 yards and two touchdowns in the season opener.
The Giants’ secondary struggled in that game, and has allowed big plays throughout the season. Santana Moss scored twice against the Giants last Sunday.
Prince Amukamara has been solid, and he will play against the Cowboys for the first time this season after missing the opener due to injury. Corey Webster is getting healthier as well.
The Giants have to find a way to slow down Dez Bryant, Miles Austin and Jason Witten and limit the big plays. The secondary has allowed seven touchdowns of 26 yards or longer this season.
The Black Unicorn returns:Martellus Bennett did his best to downplay his first game in Dallas against his former team. But he can definitely come up big for the Giants.
Bennett had four catches for 40 yards and a touchdown against Dallas in the first meeting of the year, and had five catches for 79 yards last Sunday against Washington. Bennett will be going up against a Cowboys defense that has lost linebacker Sean Lee for the season. He can potentially help open up things for Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks against the Cowboys' corners.
Get even: A win in Dallas would be big for the Giants. They can even the series with the Cowboys, which would help if there is a need for tiebreakers at the end of the season. They would extend their winning streak to four games and be 6-2 heading into the second half of the season.
And the Giants (5-2) can create an early cushion between themselves and the Cowboys (3-3), Eagles (3-3) and Redskins (3-4) in the overall standings.
The Giants say they owe Dallas one. Winning this game would give them a boost they can use going into a challenging second half of the season that is filled with tough games against Pittsburgh, at Cincinnati, Green Bay, at Washington, New Orleans, at Atlanta, at Baltimore and Philadelphia.
At 6-2, the Giants would have some room for error in the case that they go into one of their almost-annual midseason swoons.