Breakfast links: Giants need a blowout?

October, 28, 2011
10/28/11
8:00
AM ET
Friday links. Yours for the clicking.

New York Giants

The Giants plan to have both Justin Tuck and Brandon Jacobs back for Sunday's game against Miami. Tuck's return is gigantic for a defense that has had a hard time stopping the run, and it should create a defensive end rotation that will be nearly impossible for opponents to handle with Tuck, Osi Umenyiora, Jason Pierre-Paul and even outside linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka occasionally assigned to rush the passer.

Steve Politi thinks the Giants need to do more than simply win the Miami game -- that they need to win it convincingly. I can see Steve's point, but I don't agree with him. A win is a win, and heading into the second half of their schedule the most important thing for the Giants is to make sure they don't lose games they should win. If the Giants were a team that was unsure of itself and in need of a confidence boost in advance of their second-half gauntlet, I think a big blowout Sunday would be important. But the Giants are not short on confidence, and I'm sure they'd be just as happy winning by one as they would be to win by 30.

Dallas Cowboys

Now, Jason Witten thinks the Cowboys need to win the Sunday night game in Philadelphia because they need to start moving away from this .500 record they have. I see his point, too, but in the big picture I believe the Cowboys are the NFC East team that can most afford to lose this weekend. The Eagles need the game much more than does Dallas, whose remaining schedule is soft.

Tony Romo's ribs are still hurting him enough that he'll keep wearing the protective vest and taking the painkilling injections Sunday night. He's obviously hoping that any week could be the last week he needs to do those things.

Washington Redskins

Chris Cooley blames his season-ending knee injury on the NFL lockout. I'm not sure how much more I have to say about Cooley. Everybody loves the guy, so go ahead and keep doing that. I guess I don't know him well enough.

Earlier in the week, Mike Shanahan said he could have done more to help prepare his defense for the Carolina game. Defensive coordinator Jim Haslett said he agrees, and wouldn't mind the kind of help Shanahan could offer.

Philadelphia Eagles

DeSean Jackson doesn't think Cowboys defensive coordinator Rob Ryan was right to take shots at the Eagles in the preseason since he's a coach and not a player. Jackson also continues to say all of the right things about his contract situation, even though I don't think that's headed for the same resolution he thinks it is.

Defensive coordinator Juan Castillo said that, if Asante Samuel is unhappy with the way he's been treated by the front office, it's not affecting his work on the field.

Dan Graziano

ESPN New York Giants reporter

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