A crucial NFC East matchup between the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys, in Jerry World, on Thanksgiving.
The teams are tied at 7-3, with the Cowboys having the edge over the Giants due to a 23-16 win in Week 3 at MetLife that saw Cooper Rush as the starting quarterback for Dallas.
The Giants are coming off a game they would like to forget, but the Cowboys are coming in riding high off a big win over a good team.
Giants Need To Get the Run Game Going
A large part of this season’s shocking success for the Giants has been their run game. It has been the driving force for the offense, coming in second in rushing attempts and fourth in yards in the NFL.
Saquon Barkley has continued to look like his prior self after two years riddled with injuries, having the second-most rushing yards in the NFL.
Quarterback Daniel Jones has also made plays with his legs, as first-year head coach Brian Daboll has designed the offense around his skills.
Last week against the Detroit Lions, the run game could not get going at all, as Barkley had 22 rushing yards on 15 attempts. As a team, it was only the third time the Giants had less than 100 yards on the ground all season.
The ground game needs to get back into a rhythm in order to beat the Cowboys, who have struggled against the rush despite a great front seven.
If not, Jones will need to lead the offense with his arm, doing so last week with a season-high in passing attempts (44) and yards (341). However, with that, his turnovers followed, throwing two interceptions, and first since Week 3.
Without the run game, the Cowboys can also tee off on a Giants offensive line that still isn’t healthy or that good.
Game-Changing Cowboys Defense
While the Cowboys’ offense was impressive against the Minnesota Vikings, with 458 total yards, the defense, especially the front seven, changed the game.
On the third offensive play, Kirk Cousins dropped back and was sacked by Micah Parsons, who forced a fumble. That resulted in just a field goal, but set a tone for the game.
It would be one of two sacks for Parsons as the team had seven. He also had five quarterback hits, of the teams 11, being around Cousins all game.
By halftime, it was 20-3, and the Vikings moved away from a running game which had its moments, especially Dalvin Cook, who averaged 6.5 yards per carry on only 11 attempts.
If the Cowboys could get to an early lead, they might be able to do the same thing to the Giants, making it pointless to run the ball.
Tony Pollard was the star with 80 rushing yards, 109 receiving, and two touchdowns. Ezekiel Elliot was the counter to him, having 15 carries, same as Pollard, but for just 42 yards, as well as two touchdowns on the ground.
Dak Prescott wasn’t sacked once, going 22-of-25, making all the right plays. He is a big improvement over Rush, and with how the running backs are playing, the Cowboys have a good chance to get to lead early and let the defense cause havoc.
Cowboys May Pull off Another Game in the Trenches
In the first game between the Giants and Cowboys in Week 3, the Giants’ offensive line struggled, allowing five sacks, as Jones was under pressure all night.
However, the Giants did find some success on the ground, with 160 yards between Jones and Barkley.
The big difference is Prescott is back, which changes the game and gives the Cowboys a massive advantage against the Giants’ defense struggling with injuries.