The very first Sunday Night Football game of the year on NBC this season brings us a match up between two bitter NFC East rivals, as Eli Manning and the New York Giants go on the road to Arlington, Texas to take on Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys.
Last season both meetings were won by the Cowboys.
Details for Sunday’s game are below.
Date: Sep. 13
Start Time: 8:30 PM ET
Location: Arlington, TX
Stadium: AT&T Stadium
TV Info: NBC
Live Stream: NBC Sports Live Extra
Radio: For Cowboys radio affiliate, click here. For Giants radio affiliate, click here.
Ticket Information: For Cowboys ticket info, click here. For Giants ticket info, click here.
Keys to Victory
Last season the Cowboys fought their way to the NFC East title, and they did so behind what was a strong running game. DeMarco Murray, the league’s leading rusher, and that offensive line put in some serious work. However, while the Cowboys’ line is still one of the best in the NFL, Murray is gone, signing with the Philadelphia Eagles as a free agent this past spring. So, in this opener, it’ll be crucial to get that running game established and set the tone for the year to come. To start, head coach Jason Garrett will be using a running back-by-committee approach that includes Joseph Randle, Darren McFadden and the recently-acquired Christine Michael.
Whether it’s all three putting their fair share in or one of them breaking out, as we saw last season, the running game is crucial to the success of this team and for Tony Romo in the passing game.
New York Giants
Defense. Defense. Defense.
In the two losses to the Cowboys last year, it’s not as if the Giants couldn’t score. They scored 21 and 28 points respectively. But, each time out, they gave up 31 points to that Cowboys offense. With the Cowboys searching for an identity in the running game to start the season here, they’re going to need to get to Romo early and often to disrupt the rhythm of that passing game. Of course, this effort is hindered by the stupidity that was Jason Pierre-Paul’s 4th of July fireworks mishap. Still, the rest of that defensive front needs to make the Dallas passing game a living nightmare on Sunday night if they want to win.
Point Spread: Cowboys (-6)
Moneyline: Giants +210, Dallas -250
It really will be interesting to see just how well this Cowboys running game performs now that Murray is gone. It’s always a bold strategy to use the running back-by-committee concept, but that’s the hand that’s being forced on Dallas here, at least early on. However, while some may have considered him a bust in Seattle, there’s a good chance that Christine Michael could be the breakout player of the bunch behind that offensive line.
With Michael carrying a lot of the load and putting in a solid performance, that Giants defense won’t be able to hold Romo, Dez Bryant, Jason Witten and the rest of that Cowboys passing game in check. Dallas starts the season at 1-0.
Final Score: Cowboys 35, Giants 20
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