While looking at the slate of Sunday’s NFL game schedule, the Giants-Cowboys game at Metlife stadium meant very little to the NFL Playoff picture and the overall landscape of both franchises. The players on both teams had a lot to play for such as pride, job safety, respect and reputation.
With that being said the Giants and Cowboys went out on the field and put out a game that will most likely be repeated on the NFL network later in the week. Each team missing a respective superstar as Ezekiel Elliot was out for Dallas and Odell Beckham Jr out for New York, but that didn’t stop both teams for laying it on the line.
The result of the instant classic was a was a 36-35 Cowboys win over their rival which dropped the Giants record against the NFC Eats to 1-5 which matched their 2017 record. The Giants improved their overall record by two games from last season finishing 5-11. The Giants were swept in their season series with Dallas for the second year in a row.
The Giants had some shining moments during the 2018 which focused around rookie sensation Saquon Barkley who concluded his sensational rookie season with 17 carries for 109 yards with one touchdown and finished with 261 rushing attempts for 1,307 yards and 11 touchdowns, and 91 catches for 721 yards and four scores in his rookie campaign. He concluded the season with an amazing highlight as he jumped into the end zone with a Michael Jordan like hang time move.
” I just tried to get into the end zone by any means necessary and thankfully I got the ball over. I got to be a little more careful there, that’s something you can learn as a rookie, understanding that you can’t lose the ball in that situation. But thank God we were able to get a touchdown.”
“I probably could’ve just walked in.” Barkley stated on Monday to reported. “The offensive line did a really good job of blocking, but we were actually just watching that play. I was watched it with a couple offensive linemen and they were like you don’t think you could’ve just walked in here, we just laughed about it. I made up in my mind that no matter by any means I’m going to score and for some reason my body said jump and I was able to jump, but that’s something you could learn, too. In that situation, it worked out for me. We scored a touchdown, but that’s not the right time to do it. I don’t know, I think the down and distance was third down. That’s time to do if it’s fourth down in a critical moment so I got to find a way with being better ball security. Obviously, I didn’t have any fumbles this year so I did a pretty good job with that, but that was too close to call so got to definitely be smarter, but at the end of the day it did work and when the opportunity comes you got to make those plays.”
What about Eli?
A huge question from the Giants side of the equation was the future of Eli Manning as a member of the Giants. Considering the options available at the QB position in both the draft and free agency, Manning seems to be the safe bet as your starter in 2019.
Manning completed 24 of 41 passes for 301 yards, two touchdowns and one interception for a passer rating of 87.6. It was Manning’s fifth 300-yard game of the season. . This was Manning’s 50th career regular-season 300-yard game. The Giants are 19-31 in those games.
When asked about the season and the 5-11 season, Manning discussed the close ones that got away. “I think a lot of close games early in the year. Obviously we were not playing well offensively. I thought we lost a couple of close games and in the second half, we played a lot better offensively and got into a rhythm. We made plays and felt good about what we were doing. We made adjustments but still had some close heartbreaking games, especially these last two. We just were not able to make plays at the end to win but we had an opportunity at the end. We had an opportunity in this game to make it a two-score game at the end and didn’t take advantage of that and had to settle for a field goal. We had to settle. We needed 15 yards to get in field goal range and threw four straight incompletions.”
Eli Manning has only known football and unlike his older brother, Eli has had no injuries that will force him to walk away. “This is all I know. I love coming to practice. I love game planning, getting plays that will work and competing. Winning games, celebrating touchdowns, all of that. All of that is fun. The losses hurt and they are tough to deal with. They are tougher now than in the past because you know your opportunities are running low to make playoffs and championship runs. When you are not doing as well as you want to, it is tough to handle. ”
Jason Garrett On the Last Touchdown: Yeah, I thought it was a pretty remarkable play by our quarterback and our receiver. Obviously, they put some pressure on (Dak Prescott) and he had to get out of the pocket. Dak does such a great job moving in the pocket, he does such a great job keeping his eyes up and making those throws on the run. Sometimes people get down — ‘Hey, he takes sacks’ — but one thing you have to understand when you have a movement quarterback like that, there are a lot of good plays that he makes too, and certainly that was as good a play as I’ve ever seen him make, and (Cole Beasley) made a big-time catch on the other end of it
Leighton Vander Esch On Momentum heading into the playoffs: Yeah, it’ll be good for us. We’ll keep preparing and move on to a new week. We don’t know whether we play on Saturday or Sunday yet, so we’ll prepare accordingly and go get another win.
Cody Latimer On The Touchdown At The End of the First Half: It was a good touchdown. It was a great throw, though, by Eli (Manning). Eli threw an amazing pass where I was able to get in where the DB wasn’t. Just something we worked on in practice all the time and like I said, it was a great pass and a great play call. I knew it was – missed most of the year to me being out and I just wanted to be able to contribute. I made it back, busted my butt to get back for these last two games. Just trying to show on film for everybody, for myself, and just trying to do the best I can the last two games. Head down, eyes up, and we’ll see what happens.
Evan Engram On The Progress The Franchise Is Making: The things that we learn through the losses are going to pay off. You never want to lose, and you never want to be happy about losing or what you learn, but the thing is that we have to get better at the things that happen in those losses. That’s more important; that’s going to help us build in the future.
Michael Thomas on the Direction of the Giants: Definitely. I think this team moving forward, especially with all of these young guys, it is going to be great. It is great for the team. They got experience that, at most times, only vets get in these crucial situations with the game on the line. You just have to take it home and take it, if no one can give it to you. All of us will be better and this team will be better. I am definitely looking forward to next year
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