Sunday Night Football Game #1: Giants at Cowboys

No DeMarco, no problem. Cowboys get come-from behind victory to start the season 1-0.

Now that all the games for the first week of the new NFL season are in the books, this is a good of time as any to reflect on Game #1 of the Sunday Night Football schedule.  On a side note I went 10-6 on straight-up picks and 11-5 against the spread, picking the Giants to win and beat the spread.  The former didn’t happen, but the latter did thus the difference.

Due to very poor clock management we instead have the Dallas Cowboys as the NFC East frontrunner as opposed to the Philadelphia Eagles, which many predicted would do well despite gaining reigning rushing champion DeMarco Murray from their division rivals in northern Texas.  The Eagles lost to the Atlanta Falcons on Monday Night for those of you keeping track.

Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo threw a decisive 11-yard touchdown pass to Jason Witten with seven seconds left to give the Cowboys a 27-26 victory.  It was very impressing considering how Romo dropped the initial snap but picked it up to make the decisive throw.

What was not impressive was the terrible game planning by New York, but more detail on that later.

The scoring started with the two teams trading field goals in the first quarter.  Dan Bailey had a 21 yard field goal to give Dallas an early 3-0 lead, but Giants kicker Josh Brown (a former Seahawk) responded with a 50-yarder to make it 3-3 going into the second.

Bailey added another field goal, this time from 32 yards, but Giants defensive back Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie returned a fumble 57 yards to give the Giants a 10-6 lead.  Brown also added another field goal from 40 yards to give the Giants a 13-6 halftime lead.

Brown added another field goal, from 30 yards to make it 16-6, but later in the period Tony Romo threw one of his three touchdown passes, this one a two-yard score to Gavin Escobar, to cut the deficit to 16-13.  Romo had 356 yards passing on the night.

To start the fourth Giants corner Trumaine McBride returned an interception all the way to the Cowboys 1.  The Giants later punched it in with a one-yard run by running back Rashad Jennings to make it 23-13.  The Cowboys were able to respond with one of Tony Romo’s two touchdown passes to Jason Witten.  This one being a one-yard score to cut the deficit to 23-20.

Then a Giant mistake happened.

This is one play Giants quarterback Eli Manning probably wishes he had back.

New York had the ball on Dallas’s one-yard line on third down with only 1:34.  Instead of punching it in with Jennings they decided to throw it and take no time off the clock.  As a result the Cowboys were able to respond and win the ballgame.

People make mistakes, but it’s good to know that sometimes the Seahawks aren’t the only team that passes when they shouldn’t.  The Giants had to settle for another Brown field goal, this one from 19 yards, and that cost them in the end.

Hope you enjoyed the first piece.  Let me know what you thought and if there were any improvements I could make.