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Game Notes

Is This The Last Time The Manning-led Giants Face The Cowboys?

Mauricio Rodriguez



Is This The Last Time The Manning-led Giants Face The Cowboys?

The 2017 Dallas Cowboys have been a very dramatic football team, on and off the field. Among suspensions, injuries and devastating losses, things have been way more tense than expected. But the Cowboys are not the only ones with their fair share of drama in the NFC East.

This Sunday, the Dallas Cowboys will head to New York to face a Giants team that’s coming from a week of housecleaning. After a 2-10 start, not only was HC Ben McAdoo fired from the organization, but the Giants decided to part ways with their general manager, Jerry Reese.

Throughout all of this drama, Eli Manning’s 210 consecutive starts streak was snapped thanks to McAdoo’s decision to bench the veteran QB. Naturally, players, fans and the media didn’t take this too well, and understandably so.

Even as a die-hard Cowboys fan, it’s inevitable to feel bad for Manning. The Giants benched him for Geno Smith. Maybe, if they had benched Eli to give Davis Webb a bit of playing time, the reaction wouldn’t have been as bad.

But Geno? Well, that kind of move gets you fired, and it did. It’s been a dramatic situation, no doubt. A situation that brought a question to my mind.

Is this the last time the Manning-led Giants face the Dallas Cowboys?

Cowboys Headlines - 98

New York Giants QB Eli Manning Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

It may sound extreme, but both the Giants and Eli could be interested in parting ways. Even with McAdoo out of the picture, the team will likely be looking at the QB position in the first round of the Draft, and Manning might just be looking for a chance with a team like the Jaguars or even the Broncos.

It’d be a very interesting scenario and it would only add more uncertainty to the QB market this offseason, but perhaps it’s possible.

Although this is a Dallas Cowboys blog, I thought of writing about this. You see, the thing about players like Manning is that they’re always there. As a very young fan, I don’t remember watching football without him in the picture.

We’ve witnessed amazing duels between these two teams. We’ve seen Romo come back from behind in 2015, defeating the Giants… but we’ve seen Manning do similar things. More than once, Eli Manning ripped our hearts out.

I still remember the childish excitement I felt when the Cowboys played the first ever regular season game at the AT&T Stadium, then called Cowboys Stadium. I was only ten years old. Dallas was up 31-30, and with three and a half minutes to go, the Giants were holed up inside their own 15-yard line.

Manning drove the Giants offense down the field and and put his team in position to kick a game-winning 37-yard field goal as the clock went down to zero. After throwing for 330 yards and two touchdowns, Manning had ruined the Cowboys debut at Jerry World.

Not to mention when he threw for almost 350 yards and three touchdowns to win the division in the final game of the 2011 season. Or the time the Giants defeated the Cowboys in the divisional round of the 2007 playoffs.

Cowboys Headlines - The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly For Cowboys Against Giants

Eli Manning and Dak Prescott (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

As a life-long Cowboys fan, I’ve always “hated” Eli and the Giants. I’m sure most of Cowboys Nation does, too. The two-times Super Bowl MVP is often regarded as an elite QB and some would argue he isn’t. Between Cowboys and Giants fans, the Tony Romo VS Eli Manning debate always existed.

But even if we hate Eli, we can’t deny that in a way, we kind of enjoy the fact that he’s around.

At the end of it all, we’re football fans. And for a long time, Manning has made the Cowboys-Giants rivalry a even more special one. Every time our Cowboys are playing the Giants, I wake up a bit more excited than I usually do. It’s not your usual game day… it’s Cowboys vs Giants game day.

Whether we’re willing to admit it or not, Eli is a big reason why these games are better. I’d dare say that without Manning, the rivalry wouldn’t be as epic as it is today.

Who knows where Eli Manning will be playing in the future, but for know, we do know he’ll be the starting QB versus the Cowboys next Sunday. Hopefully, he loses.

Tell me what you think about “Is This The Last Time The Manning-led Giants Face The Cowboys?” in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!


I love to write, I love football and I love the Dallas Cowboys. I’ve been rooting for America’s team all the way from Mexico ever since I can remember. If you want to talk football, I’m in… You’ll find me at @PepoR99.

Game Notes

After Calling Out Refs, Will DeMarcus Lawrence Draw A Holding Call?

Kevin Brady



DeMarcus Lawrence, Broncos

Somehow someway Dallas Cowboys defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence seems to have avoided being fined for his ripping of the referees after last week’s win.

Lawrence went off on the officiating, specifically due to the lack of holding calls being called against opposing offensive tackles. Tracking the number of opposing holding calls has become a Cowboys Twitter hobby as of late, but the amount of missed calls against those blocking DeMarcus Lawrence has certainly got out of hand.

Interestingly enough, it doesn’t appear that Lawrence will be fined at all, despite calling out those refs on Sunday afternoon. Personally I’m glad to see Lawrence avoid the fine as I don’t believe he deserves one, but I was surprised to see the league not step-in nonetheless.

Now the attention moves to tonight’s game, and I must ask the question that will be on the mind’s of all fans – will DeMarcus Lawrence draw a holding call against the Oakland Raiders?

The man has been damn-near unblockable all season long, making it hard to believe linemen aren’t attempting to hold him often. And now that Lawrence has made his complaints public I’m sure the referees will have his comments on their minds as well.

This could be similar to what we see during NBA Playoff series, where a head coach will call out referees early in a series in an effort to game them during the latter parts of the playoffs. Hopefully if Lawrence is held today, he will get those calls.

So what do you guys think, will DeMarcus Lawrence draw a holding call tonight?


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Game Notes

Cowboys Wishlist #SNF Edition: Dallas Cowboys @ Oakland Raiders

Mauricio Rodriguez



Cowboys Wishlist #SNF Edition: Dallas Cowboys @ Oakland Raiders 1

Believe it or not, we just have three more Sundays of Cowboys’ regular season football. Whether we’ll be able to see them past December or not remains unknown. But for now, it’s all about the Oakland Raiders. Just like Dallas, the season in Oakland has been pretty disappointing.

Things have changed for the Cowboys, though. After being blown out three times, they’ve turned the tide this last couple of weeks. After beating the Redskins and the Giants in consecutive weeks, they’ll try to win one more game without Ezekiel Elliott.

After that, things should be back to normal. In the meantime, here is this week’s Cowboys Wishlist!

Wish #1: Dak Prescott Passes for 300+ Yards

After failing to pass the 200 passing yards mark for four consecutive weeks, Dak Prescott was back on track last week as he threw for a career high 332 yards versus the Giants. After Zeke was suspended, most of Cowboys Nation expected Dak to put the team on his back during 21’s absence.

Film Room: How Dak Prescott Beat The Giants' Blitz

Despite under-performing through the first games of the suspension, at least Dak has a chance to turn things around. The first time Dak passed for more than 300 yards was versus the Steelers in what was one of the best games of the 2016 NFL season. One week later, he threw for another 301 yards against Baltimore.

I wish Dak Prescott is able to pull off something similar this year by passing for more than 300 yards in consecutive weeks. And what a better time to do it than the last time he’ll miss Zeke on the field.

Wish #2: Rod Smith Has an Increased Role on Offense

Sean's Scout: RB Rod Smith Proving Valuable Offensive ThreatAlfred Morris was the player the Cowboys’ coaching staff decided to turn to with Elliott suspended, and he did a decent job. After all, he brought experience to the table. Some will argue he didn’t do enough, some will say it was the right call to play Morris as this team starting RB.

Despite Morris’ 127-yard game versus the Redskins, I still wanted Dallas to give Rod Smith more touches. That wasn’t the case. I really wanted to see what he can bring to the table as a long-term backup for Elliott. He’s a better pass catcher and a better blocker than Morris anyway.

I wonder if what looked to be a breakout game versus the Giants translates to more carries this Sunday night. I wish it does, and that Smith takes care of business again.

Wish #3: La’el Collins Dominates Khalil Mack

A lot of us, myself included, questioned the decision to move La’el Collins from left guard to right tackle in the offseason. We liked the idea of him taking the position in which he had played during the 2015 season. However, through 14 weeks, it looks like Dallas made the right call.

Collins has had himself a pretty good season and has done nothing but improve week after week. Not even his injury has slowed him down these last two weeks. When he lines up versus Raiders’ Khalil Mack, he’ll be facing his toughest test yet. 

Cowboys Wishlist #SNF Edition: Dallas Cowboys @ Oakland Raiders

Collins has faced players like Von Miller, Joey Bosa, Ryan Kerrigan and Jason Pierre-Paul… will he be able to stop Mack? I definitely wish he does. Dak Prescott has been sacked enough.

Wish #4: Dez Bounces Back

Dez Bryant had an amazing 50-yard TD a week ago just before halftime. It came just at the right time, as the Cowboys tied the game 10-10 in New York. That’s why we love Dez. He finds the way to be in epic moments frequently.

But that’s not enough. This year, Dez has been struggling. There’re many reasons why he’s struggled, and both Dak and Dez are to blame. It seems that for every epic moment, we get a couple of bad plays like this one:

Dez – Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

But with 88, you never know. He’s a play-maker and can change the outcome of a game out of nowhere. The Raiders’ pass defense hasn’t been good this year, and Dez might find a way to throw up the X… maybe even two times. I wish Dez has a bounce back week in Oakland.

Wish #5: Hold The Raiders Under 20 Points

With the return of Sean Lee and a few shake-ups on the Cowboys’ secondary, the defense has been looking pretty interesting and promising. They held Washington to 14 points and the Giants to 10. It’d be impressive to see them hold their opponents under 20 points three weeks in a row.

Graham Barfield on Twitter

Cowboys Run Defense Splits With Sean Lee (7G): 3.85 YPC (10th-fewest) Without Sean Lee (6G): 4.71 YPC (2nd-most)

The Raiders will be playing without Amari Cooper, but they still have Derek Carr. Despite having a bad year himself, he still can be a headache in a close game.

If the Cowboys are able to hold Oakland under 20 points, I’ll be satisfied.

Tell me what you think about “Cowboys Wishlist #SNF Edition: Dallas Cowboys @ Oakland Raiders” in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!


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Game Notes

Irving and Scandrick Are Out; Neal, Jones, and Awuzie Got This



Will Chidobe Awuzie's Return Benefit The Cowboys' Defense?

The 7-6 Dallas Cowboys will be taking on the 6-7 Oakland Raiders on Sunday night in Oakland, California. Both teams are still in the hunt in their playoff pictures and must win out if they want a chance at playing football in January.

Cowboys Head Coach Jason Garrett said Friday that David Irving (concussion) and Orlando Scandrick (back) would miss a third day of practice each, which was followed by the team listing both players as out for Sunday night’s game against the Raiders. This will be the second straight game that both defenders will be inactive due to injury.

Both players suffered their injuries in the Washington Redskins game just three weeks ago and have yet to practice since. In their absence, rookie Lewis Neal and newly signed Datone Jones will get a lot of work at the three-technique position to fill in for David Irving.

Datone Jones, Lewis Neal

Lewis Neal - DT

Dallas Cowboys DT Lewis Neal

In limited playing time last week at the Giants, Datone Jones flashed, especially in the run game. Sunday’s game was the first week the Cowboys’ dressed Jones since signing with the team last month.

Against the Giants, Jones was credited with two tackles and one run stuff, according to ESPN.

Along with Datone Jones, Lewis Neal will also get playing time at defensive tackle. Of the two players, Neal is the better pass rusher and he’s shown that in the limited playing time he’s received.

Neal is an undersized defensive tackle that I evaluated as a 3-4 defensive end in last year’s draft process. His explosive first step and ability to convert speed to power makes him a tough matchup for offensive lineman when rushing the passer.

While I would prefer to have David Irving on the field, a combination of Lewis Neal and Datone Jones can get the job done and make some big plays while doing so.

Chidobe Awuzie

The other player the Cowboys will be without this weekend, is starting cornerback Orlando Scandrick. Just like David Irving, Orlando Scandrick has yet to practice in the last two weeks. His replacement, Chidobe Awuzie has been phenomenal while filling in for the 10th year veteran.

Sunday Morning Wishlist: DAL Cowboys @ NY Giants 1

Dallas Cowboys CB Chidobe Awuzie

Against both the Washington Redskins and New York Giants, Awuzie has gotten the start at left cornerback. In those two games, Chidobe Awuzie was targeted eight times, and in those eight targets, he gave up only two completions for 19 yards. He also has five passes defended and six tackles over the two-game span.

He has performed excellently after spending most of his rookie season on the sideline nursing a hamstring injury.

John Owning on Twitter

Chidobe Awuzie was targeted 5 times against NYG. Allowed only 2 catches for 19 yards. Eli had a 51.3 passer rating when targeting him, per PFF #DallasCowboys

Normally, when the Cowboys’ defense looks to be without two of its better players, Cowboys Nation starts to panic, but you shouldn’t this week. I have faith in Lewis Neal, Datone Jones, and Chidobe Awuzie to hold down the fort and you should too.

Look for #33, #58, and #66 to make a ton of plays in both the running and passing game this Sunday night against the Oakland Raiders.

What are the Cowboys’ chances against the Raiders without Irving and Scandrick?

Let me know below!


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