New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys
Sunday, September 10, 2017, 8:30 pm Eastern, TV: NBC
AT&T Stadium – Arlington, Texas
Opening Line: Dallas -6 1/2 (-105)
Current Line: Dallas -4
Opening Total: 49
Current Total: 46 1/2
Opening Money Line: Cowboys -200 / Giants +170
Current Money Line: Cowboys -190 / Giants +165
For the fifth time in the last six seasons the Dallas Cowboys open the season with NFC East rival the New York Giants. This time they open in Arlington in the Sunday night game. Both of these teams have the potential to be Super Bowl contenders.
Dallas leads the series 62-46-2. The Giants swept the season series last year 20-19 in Texas and 10-7 in New Jersey. Dallas only lost three games in the regular season and two of those losses came to New York. Dallas makes the return trip to New York December 10.
New York is coached by Ben McAdoo. The Giants went 11-5 last season and finished two games behind the Cowboys in the NFC East despite the sweep. The Giants lost to the Packers 38-13 in Green Bay in the NFC Wild Card playoffs. The Giants went 9-7-1 ATS and the total was 5-12 last season. New York was 2-2 in the pre-season this year including a 40-38 at the New England Patriots in week four.
Dallas is coached by Jason Garrett. The Cowboys had the best record in the NFC last year at 13-3. In between losses to the Giants, the Cowboys won 11 straight games. Dallas was upset at home by the Packers 34-31 in the Divisional playoffs. Dallas was 10-7 ATS and the total was 7-10 last season. The Cowboys went 3-1 in the pre-season. The last pre-season game against the Houston Texans was cancelled because of the effects of Hurricane Harvey on the Houston area.
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New York outscored teams 19-18 last year. The Giants averaged 331 yards per game on offense including 242 passing and 88 rushing yards. The Giants allowed 340 yards per game on defense including 251 passing and 88 rushing yards. New York was 87/238 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents were 92/252. The Giants forced 35 sacks and allowed 22 last season. New York was -2 in turnovers but they scored 4 defensive touchdowns.
Quarterback Eli Manning completed 63% of his passes for 4,027 yards with 26 touchdowns and 16 interceptions. Geno Smith is the back-up.
Running back Rashad Jennings had 181 carries for 593 yards and 3 touchdowns, plus 35 catches for 201 yards and a touchdown. He was not resigned and is currently a free agent. Paul Perkins had 112 carries for 456 yards, plus 15 catches for 162 yards. Shane Vereen had 33 carries for 158 yards and a touchdown, plus 11 catches for 94 yards. Orleans Darkwa has 30 carries for 111 yards and 2 touchdowns, plus 2 catches for 12 yards. Rookie Wayne Gallman will also get some carries. Another rookie Shane Smith is the fulback.
Receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. had 101 catches for 1,367 yards and 10 touchdowns. He is officially listed as questionable with a knee injury, but is probably closer to doubtful. Sterling Shepard had 65 catches for 683 yards and 8 touchdowns. The Giants signed Brandon Marshall from the Jets. Marshall had 58 catches for 799 yards and 3 touchdowns last season. He is probable with a shoulder injury. Tight end Will Tye had 48 catches for 395 yards and a touchdown. He is now with the Jets. The Giants signed Rhett Ellison from the Vikings to be the new tight end and also drafted Evan Ingram at tight end. Nine defensive players are listed on the injury report.
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Dallas outscored teams 26-19 last season. The Cowboys averaged 377 yards per game on offense including 227 passing and 150 rushing yards. On defense, Dallas allowed 344 total yards including 260 passing and 84 rushing yards. The Cowboys were 88/198 on third and fourth down conversions and opponents were 86/211. Dallas forced 28 sacks and allowed 36 last season. Dallas was +5 in turnovers.
Quarterback Dak Prescott won Rookie of the Year in relief of an injured Tony Romo. Prescott completed 67.8% of his passes for 3,667 yards with 23 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. He also had 57 carries for 282 rushing yards and 6 touchdowns. Romo is now retired and working as a broadcaster. Rookie Cooper Rush is listed as the back-up behind Prescott.
Running back Ezekiel Elliott had 322 carries for 1,631 yards and 15 touchdowns, plus 32 catches for 363 yards and a touchdown. He led the league in rushing but was suspended for six games. However, a Texas judge granted a temporary injunction and Elliott will likely play for the rest of the season until the matter is decided in court. Alfred Morris had 69 carries for 242 yards and 2 touchdowns. Darren McFadden will also get some carries. Keith Smith is the fullback.
Receiver Cole Beasley became Prescott’s favorite target last year. He had 75 catches for 833 yards and 5 touchdowns. Dez Bryant had 50 catches for 796 yards and 8 touchdowns. Tight end Jason Witten had 69 catches for 673 yards and 3 touchdowns. Terrance Williams has 44 catches for 594 yards and 4 touchdowns. Brice Butler had 16 catches for 219 yards and 3 touchdowns. Rookies Noah Brown and Ryan Switzer will also get some targets. Nine defensive players are injured or suspended.
The Giants are 6-1 on fiedturf. New York is 5-0 ATS overall against the Cowb, and 6-2 in their last eight trips to Dallas. The underdog is 4-1 ATS in this series recently. The over is 7-2 in this series and 7-1 in Dallas between the teams.
The Cowboys are 2-5 ATS against NFC East teams, 7-19-1 on fieldturf, 1-6 overall and against NFC teams.
The Giants are really good at one thing, and that is stopping the run. That happens to be what the Cowboys prefer to do on offense, and is part of the reason the Giants have had the Cowboys’ number recently. I think Prescott will only get better and I think the Cowboys win a tough game at home.