Team Giants


Giants - Cowboys
Game 14 preview
Sunday Dec 19, 1:00 PM - Cowboys at Giants

Giants (4-9) Cowboys (9-4)
Last Sunday, the Cowboys held a 24 point halftime lead. Washington came back, scoring three touchdowns while holding the Cowboys to just one field goal. Late In the fourth quarter, Washington fumbled the ball over. That became their last drive of the game, and the Cowboys had a 27-20 win.
The Giants did not do well in their game with the L.A. Chargers. With 4:33 remaining, the Chargers held a 37-7 lead, and didn't have to do much more. The two touchdowns the Giants added after that, just made the 37-20 final score look a bit better.

Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys currently lead the NFC East, just as they did the last time they faced off with the Giants earlier in the season. After the Cowboys beat the Giants, they went on to win two more before their six game win streak ended. The Cowboys went 3-3 after that, and their 9-4 record has them in position to possibly win a playoff spot this week, with a win over the Giants.
That would happen if either New Orleans or San Francisco, also lose their games. The Saints are heavy underdogs (+11), and the the 49ers are heavy favorites (-9). A Cowboys win also puts them in great position to take the NFC East division title, considering Philadelphia and Washington have 6-7 records with only four games left to play.

Cowboys Offense
The Cowboys are second in the league, averaging 29.2 points a game, compared to last year when they were at 24.7. Dak Prescott is one of the reasons there is that improvement. Prescott was on his way to breaking the passing yardage record when he was severely injured in the Cowboys first game with the Giants last year, and he missed the rest of the season. This year Prescott has thrown for 24 touchdowns and 10 interceptions while completing 68 percent of his passes for 3381 yards.
While still in the top ten quarterback ranking, those numbers likely would be higher if Prescott hadn't sustained a calf injury in a game with New England. Prescott missed one game and since he's been back, the Cowboys have a 3-3 record, with Prescott throwing 8 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. Wide receiver CeeDee Lamb is Prescott's top target. Lamb and Amari Cooper are tied for the team lead, each having caught 6 touchdowns.
The Cowboys rank 6th in the NFL in rushing offense, averaging 128.5 yards per game. The one two punch of Ezekiel Elliot and Tony Pollard has been a bit diminished, with Elliot dealing with a knee injury for a few weeks. Pollard missed the last game due to a torn plantar fascia in his left foot. Pollard practiced for the first time in a limited fashion this week and may play. Both running backs can catch, and Pollard's sure hands have given him 31 catches on 34 targets.

Cowboys Defense
The Cowboys defense was their weak point last year. Their rushing defense was ranked 31st and they were 28th in points allowed. The Cowboys were improved in both areas when they last met up with the Giants, and continued to do so after that. Last year the Cowboys gave up 159 rushing yards a game, and now it's 110. That of course helps in the most important area. Instead of giving up 29.6 points a game, that number is impressively down to 22.1.
The Cowboys 27-20 final score over Washington last week, wasn't as close as it may appear. Dak Prescott threw a pick-six late in the fourth quarter. Overall the defense kept Washington's running game in check, and held quarterback Taylor Heineke to 122-passing yards. Heineke was sacked four times, with two of them coming from rookie linebacker Micah Parsons. Parsons leads the team by far, with 12 sacks.
Defensive end Randy Gregory, who had an interception last week, is second on the team with 6 sacks. In the secondary the defense likes to employ man-to-man coverage, Trevon Diggs is an aggressive cornerback, and has 9 interceptions on the year, nearly half of the teams total 20. Anthony Brown is second with 3, and Jourdan Lewis has 2.

Giants Offense
Quarterback Mike Glennon will be in for his third consecutive start this week. Glennon has faced the Cowboys before. In the Giants first game with them, Daniel Jones left with a concussion he suffered near the goal line right before the half. Glennon coming off the bench, threw for 1 touchdown and two interceptions, with a 64 percent completion percentage, which was better than Jones was doing earlier in the game. As a starter with the opportunity to practice more with the main players, you would expect that number to stay somewhere in that same area, but it hasn't. In Glennon's two starts against the Dolphins and Chargers, it's averaged down to 50 percent.
To be fair, most backup quarterbacks are in for the short term. Hopefully, they are good game managers and can keep things going. The Giants offensive line hasn't played well all year, and they need a quarterback who can actually step up and make things happen to cover their deficiencies. Jones hasn't proven that he can even do that in a consistent fashion. Glennon's 'main players' have been in and out of practice with various injuries and COVID protocols. Last week, Kenny Golladay dealing with a rib injury, was targeted 8 times, but was able to pull in only 2 passes for 15 yards. Sterling Shepard had returned after missing a few games, and caught two of Glennon's 4 passes for 27 yards.
On the plus side, Saquon Barkley ran for a season high 64 yards last week, and caught 3 passes for 31 yards. The Giants did put together some good plays near the end of that game. Barkley had an 18-yard touchdown catch, and Glennon finished their next drive off himself by running the ball in 8 yards for a touchdown. Did the Giants suddenly wake up, or did the Chargers begin to snooze on their big lead?

Giants Defense
Last week against the LA Chargers, the defense showed no pass rush. This was not a new event for the Giants, and it didn't help that their shaky secondary is susceptible to deep passes. Justin Herbert completed 23 of his 31 passes for 275 yards and 3 touchdowns, including one that went for 59 yards when there was less than a minute left in the first half. They didn't play their best against the Chargers last week, and it's possible that defensive end Leonard Williams will miss this game.
Linebacker Jaylon Smith was available for the Giants after being released by the Green Bay Packers. Smith was a second-round pick of the Cowboys in the 2016 NFL draft, and played with them this year. With Micah Parsons exceeding expectations, the Cowboys decided to move on from Smith, who looks to be playing in this game against his former team.
The Giants secondary is hurting. Cornerbacks Adoree Jackson and Aaron Robinson had tested positive for COVID-19, and may not play against the Cowboys The good news is that safety Xavier McKinney has been cleared from the Reserve/COVID-19 list, and he will be in this game with the Cowboys.

The Cowboys are favored to win in this game with the Giants. They are also at a point where they can field more healthy playmakers, something the Giants have struggled with all year. The Giants were hit with injuries on both sides of the ball with free agents, rookies, and their regulars. It includes starting quarterback Daniel Jones, who will now miss his third straight game.
The Cowboys know what that can feel like after last year when they lost Dak Prescott, and finished up with a 6-10 record. Add to that, this week the Giants had eight players on the reserve/COVID-19 list at various times after testing positive for the virus. The Cowboys should note that the Giants recently implemented a number of trick plays. For this game, the Cowboys biggest worry should be that one or two might actually work for a change.

NFC East Games
Sunday at 1:00pm Cowboys (9-4) at Giants (4-9).
Sunday at 1:00pm Washington (6-7) at Eagles (6-7). -------- UPDATE ------- Tuesday at 7:00pm.
The Cowboys and Eagles are the teams favored to win in these games.
Check out.
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tgtwitter TeamGiants on Twitter.

Giants could have selected Micah Parsons with the 11th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Giants traded their 11th overall pick for the Bears 20th and 5th round picks, and 1st and 4th round picks in 2022.

Giants selected wide receiver Kadarius Toney with their 20th pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Next Games
Dec 26 Giants at Philadelphia
Jan 2 Giants at Chicago

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