The Giants’ tailspin is out of control, and their playoff hopes have been all but erased by their ongoing five-game slide. It’s easy to understand why a Big Blue fan might be losing interest in the season.
Good thing the hated Cowboys are coming to MetLife Stadium for a Sunday night showdown to reinvigorate the muddled masses. Dallas (7-3) has won as many games as the Giants have lost and are battling the Eagles in the NFC East race. If the Giants are going to play spoilers and avenge their Oct. 19 loss to the Cowboys, here are three things they’ll need to do that they haven’t been.
Protect the football
It’s been quite some time since the Giants went one full game without committing a turnover — nearly two calendar years. Last week was among the worst in that time as Eli Manning was picked off five times, nearly doubling his season total to 11. Giants rushers have not lost any fumbles all season, so perhaps a run-heavy offense wouldn’t be the worst idea provided the offensive line can create openings.
When last the Giants saw Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray, he had extended his streak of 100-plus-yard games to start the season to seven. While it was snapped at eight against the Cardinals (79 yards), he bounced back for 100 against the Jaguars before last week’s bye and still leads the NFL in rushing by nearly 300 yards. The Giants rank last in the league in rushing defense, so an atypical performance is necessary.
Tony Romo has been, for the most part, a good quarterback during his 139-game Cowboys career. But, as many fans are already aware, he’s reliable for the occasional miserable game. There have yet to be any of those this season — certainly not when he went 17-for-23 with three touchdown passes and just one interception against the Giants — so it will be up to Jason Pierre-Paul and the defensive line to force Romo into mistakes.