Two NFC East rivals looking to shake off disappointing seasons kick off their respective season in Arlington on Sunday night, as the New York Giants pay a visit to Cowboys AT&T Stadium to take on the Dallas Cowboys.
For Eli Manning and the Giants, the momentum of a Super Bowl XLVI victory didn’t carry over to the 2012 season, as they finished 2nd in the NFC East (9-7) behind a resurgent Washington Redskins team led by Robert Griffin III and missed the playoffs altogether. For Tony Romo and the Cowboys, they might be playing for Jason Garrett’s job–he’s 21-19 in three seasons (all 3rd-place finishes in the NFC East, including back-to-back 8-8 records) with no playoff appearances.
All time, Dallas is 57-43-2 against the Giants, but in their four trips thus far to Jerry’s World, Big Blue has yet to lose–in fact, they’re on a six-game winning streak in the Big D.
Two big questions surrounding the Cowboys in 2013–how will Dallas’ new $100+ million man, Tony Romo, respond after a vote of confidence by Jerry Jones in the form of a six-year contract extension? After a career season in 2012, is Dez Bryant finally poised to become a star in the NFL? Can Anthony Spencer and DeMarcus Ware raise the intensity in 2013? Can the Cowboys get back to among the NFL’s elite? One thing’s for sure–Jerry Jones won’t stand for another playoff-less season, and the next one out could be Garrett.
For the Giants, they’re beginning life without Ahmad Bradshaw, who shipped off to Indianapolis in the offseason after being cut. How will David Wilson carry the load in 2013? How will Victor Cruz do? He suffered a dropoff in yardage in 2012, but still recorded ten touchdowns. And, of course, leading the charge is Eli Manning, who fell off last season after nearly passing for 5,000 yards in 2011 and will need to get back to form in order to get his team back to the postseason.