New York Giants At Dallas Cowboys: When The Giants Have The Ball

(Sports Network) – The defense isn’t the only area that’s been performing at an elite level during the Giants’ successful stretch. New York has been running the ball with authority over the past few weeks, with Ahmad Bradshaw (582 rushing yards, 3 TD, 14 receptions) registering a pair of 100-yard outings and averaging a healthy 5.7 yards per carry during the win streak. The fourth-year pro has flourished in his first go-around as the feature back for an offense that now stands fifth in the NFL in rushing yards (136.3 ypg). The Giants can throw it a little bit as well, with quarterback Eli Manning (1479 passing yards, 10 TD, 8 INT) having completed nearly 65 percent of his attempts while working with a young and talented cast of pass-catchers. Steady wideout Steve Smith (34 receptions, 1 TD) eclipsed the century mark in receiving yards in both meetings with the Cowboys last year, 2009 first-round pick Hakeem Nicks (36 receptions, 417 yards) is a physical force whose six touchdown catches rank near the top of the league, and Mario Manningham (18 receptions, 2 TD) has flashed big-play potential as the third option. Turnovers have been an issue on occasion, as Manning’s been picked off eight times so far and Bradshaw had some fumble problems early on, but the team had just one giveaway against the Lions.

The Giants may not have to worry about turning the ball over on Monday, considering the Dallas defense has produced only four takeaways this season and three of them came in the team’s lone win at Houston back in Week 3. That lack of momentum-changing plays has been a sore spot for an unit that’s otherwise held its own, as the Cowboys have allowed the fourth-fewest yards in the league (281.4 ypg) and limited Minnesota to a mere 188 total yards during last week’s frustrating setback. After being gashed for 153 rushing yards by Tennessee two weeks ago, Dallas tightened up its run defense and held Vikings All-Pro Adrian Peterson to a modest 73 yards on 24 carries last Sunday, with inside linebacker and top tackler Bradie James (37 tackles) heading the charge with 10 stops (nine solo). New York must also account for outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware (24 tackles, 7 sacks), one of the game’s most feared pass rushers who’s compiled six sacks over his past three tilts. The Cowboys will need to get Ware going once again with the secondary, and cornerback Mike Jenkins (14 tackles, 1 INT, 5 PD) in particular, having struggled as of late.

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