Giants 21, Cowboys 17: A Big, Fat Choke
Remember that team in the photo above? Same name as this bunch that gave the game to the Giants in every way possible– offensively, defensively, special teams. Every single way.
Remember that playoff drought? It’s going to continue. The 2008 season will be year 12.
The pathetic low points, which are tough to type right now:
* The Cowboys took a 14-7 lead late in the first half after a 20 play drive that took 10:28 off the clock. The defense then forgot that the half was over and allowed the Giants to drive 71 yards in less than minute to tie the game.
* Dallas took the opening kickoff of the second half and went on a 14-play drive that set up a field goal. The Cowboys had two shots to score a touchdown (once to Owens, another to Fasano), but had to settle for a field goal. That was the last Dallas score of the game.
* The kickoff coverage team stunk again, allowing a 45-yard return after the field goal. These long returns were far too common all season.
* After the defense held the Giants, the Cowboys had some chances. However, on 3rd and 13 from the Dallas 17, the suddenly mouthy Patrick Crayton dropped what would have been at least a first down if not a much longer gain. Punt for Dallas.
* That special teams coverage? Blew it again, allowing R.W. McQuarters to return the ball 25 yards into Dallas territory.
* Jacques Reeves was a goat for much of the game, giving up key passes to rookie Steve Smith.
* The offensive line could not handle the Giants in the fourth quarter. Romo threw off his back foot much of the time and was largely ineffective.
* It looked as if Dallas had some shots in the final two drives, but Romo could not find the open man. On the next-to-last play of the game for the Cowboys, Crayton looked as if he had a step on the defender but stopped for some reason.
We might need to look very closely at another team still in the playoffs for some inspiration: San Diego, which tanked its divisional round game last season only to rebound and make it to the AFC Championship Game. For us, this offseason is going to be even more unbearable than last year.