Eli Manning leads the Giants into Dallas to face the rival Cowboys as Big Blue kicks off the 2013 season.
The Cowboys defeat the Giants in a game that featured six turnovers by Big Blue. Check out analysis and final grades for New York below.
New York 31, Dallas 36
|Positional Unit||1st Half Grade||Final Grade|
vs. Cowboys Week 1
Game Analysis for the New York Giants
After a sloppy start, that featured two interceptions in the first seven minutes of the game, Eli Manning found his groove as the game progressed.
Under pressure for most of the night behind a shaky offensive line, the 10-year veteran threw for 450 yards and four touchdowns. His work resulted in Hakeem Nicks, Victor Cruz and Reuben Randle all having over 100 yards receiving.
However, he capped off his night with a third interception due to a poorly executed screen pass to Da’Rel Scott. The pick was returned for a touchdown by the Cowboys’ Brandon Carr, which gave Dallas a two-score lead with less than two minutes left in the game.
This unit was awful all night. David Wilson fumbled twice, with the second being scooped up and run back for a touchdown by Dallas. He also only managed 19 yards on seven carries.
Scott was modestly better as a rusher, but was the main culprit in the game-sealing pick-six. His inability to turn around quickly to field Manning’s pass resulted in the ball hitting his shoulder and subsequently landing in Carr’s waiting arms.
The Giants dearly missed the departed Ahmad Bradshaw and injured Andre Brown in this game.
A respectable performance that benefited from Tony Romo being banged up in the second half. The defense didn’t allow a pass longer than 23 yards, but struggled on short and mid-range throws.
Cowboys tight end Jason Witten continued to be a force, as he torched the Giants' linebackers and safeties for 70 yards and two touchdowns. The pass rush was spotty, but effective at getting pressure in the fourth quarter.
Kudos to Ryan Mundy, who had an interception and made the key third-down tackle late in the fourth quarter that gave the ball back to the offense for its final, ill-fated drive.
The Giants managed to hold the Cowboys to under 90 rushing yards and four yards per carry. This was mainly due to their work against the explosive DeMarco Murray, who managed a solid yet unspectacular 86 yards on 20 carries.
Like the pass defense, the Giants prevented the big play in this area. Murray had the Cowboys' longest run—a mere 13-yard scamper.
A Dallas punt that hit Trumaine McBride in the face before touching a Cowboy was costly. The “fumble” gave the Cowboys field position at the Giants' 16-yard line.
They cashed in two plays later with a touchdown.
Tom Coughlin didn’t make any glaring in-game errors, but his team was clearly not sharp. While injuries and inexperience in key spots were a factor, they cannot explain away Big Blue’s six turnovers and generally ill-prepared, sloppy play.
First-Half Analysis for the New York Giants
A 70-yard touchdown pass from Eli Manning to Victor Cruz on a blown coverage late in the half salvaged an otherwise poor showing by this unit. Manning has struggled for the most part, throwing two interceptions while completing less than 50 percent of his passes.
Pass-blocking has not helped his cause, with Dallas hurrying the Giants' signal-caller on several occasions and sacking him once.
The offensive line has struggled in this area as well, with a rusty Henry Hynoski not helping the situation either.
A key David Wilson fumble inside the Cowboys' 10 yard-line likely cost Big Blue at least three points. The second-year running back only has 15 yards rushing.
A lack of a pass rush (no sacks) has allowed Tony Romo too much time to throw the ball. The Giants' secondary has defended the deep ball well, but short and intermediate throws have hurt the team.
Jason Witten continues to be a New York nemesis, as he has caught six passes for 62 yards and a touchdown.
New York has held the quick and elusive DeMarco Murray to 43 yards on 10 carries. Overall, Dallas has a pedestrian 45 rushing yards on 3.8 yards per carry.
The linebackers' ability to fill gaps and tackle surely are big reasons for the successful performance.
An uneventful display by this unit as a whole. No glaring mistakes, but it has also lacked big plays. The highlights are a 20-yard field goal by Josh Brown and a booming 60-yard punt by Steve Weatherford.
Tom Coughlin has managed the game well, but must take blame for the Giants' sloppy play.
When a team turns the ball over three times in less than seven minutes, as the Giants did to start the game, the coach has not properly prepared his team to take the field.