If there’s one good thing to take out of the Giants’ 31-21 loss to the Cowboys, it’s that the New York offense didn’t look as helpless as it did versus the Eagles during the week before. In that game, Eli Manning was constantly under siege and the Giants were held to zero points.
Against Dallas, though, Manning threw for 248 yards with three touchdown passes, zero sacks, and zero interceptions. Despite the result, it was a good game for a Giants passing attack that will be missing a key piece in Victor Cruz for the rest of the season.
So why did the Giants fail on Sunday? Gaining consistent yards on the ground proved to be an issue, as well as turnovers.
“If they’re stacking the box, we’ve got to throw it,” said Manning, “But they’re playing safeties two deep and soft. You’ve got to be able to run the ball versus those looks. They’re good looks to run. We weren’t getting much success with it. That makes it tough. It’s going to be tough to throw against that as well and that’s when you give up sacks or interceptions and bad things happen.”
Even a lack of sacks or interceptions in Dallas couldn’t stop bad things from happening when Manning threw the ball. On a key series early in the fourth quarter, Larry Donnell fumbled the ball while trying to reach the first down marker. That led to a turnover which in turn led to a touchdown for the Cowboys.
Despite the error, Manning still has faith in the Giants’ young players.
“Donnell is doing great things but is still a young guy,” said Manning, “He had some fumbles and had some bad plays so there’s still some young aspects to it but there is definitely the talent there. When you get through some of the growing pains of these young guys they’re doing a lot of good things.”
Although New York has just played seven games so far, they’ve had a season’s worth of ups and downs. Manning and company will use the upcoming bye week to rest up and get ready to make a playoff push with the final nine games that are left on the schedule.
“We’ll get away,” said Manning, “I told the guys we’ve had a long stretch with seven games, five preseason games. We’ve played a lot of football, been at it a long time. I think it’s good to get away from it but I just told them ‘Make sure you get away, still get some workouts, still be moving and make sure, when you come back, we know what’s ahead of us.’ We know what the challenge is ahead of us and get ready to make a big run and to get where we’re playing our best football.”