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View Full Version : NFC East Spin Cycle: Cruz-Manning Again The Difference



RoanokeFan
10-23-2012, 12:32 PM
http://www.profootballweekly.com/2012/10/22/nfc-east-spin-cycle-cruz-manning-again-the-differe

Excerpt: "With the Eagles on bye, the Giants kept their ascension in the division by fending off the Redskins in a barn burner and the Cowboys stayed alive with a win in Carolina. The Giants and Cowboys will meet next week in Dallas that looms as a critical game for the home team.

GIANTS

What we learned: The Giants are in the discussion for being the best team in the NFL (again) after their 27-23 victory over the Redskins. Eli Manning and Victor Cruz overcame some missed connections earlier in the game to hook up for a 77-yard score that the Redskins couldn’t rebound from in what was a back-and-forth game. The Giants forced four turnovers, sacked Robert Griffin III three times and made the key stop at game’s end. At 5-2, the Giants lead the NFC East by more than a game and they continue to find new ways to win game, even if the names — Manning and Cruz — are often the same.

What’s in store next: The Giants head to Dallas to kick off a tough four-game stretch — at Cowboys, vs. Steelers, at Bengals, vs. Packers — before they have to face Griffin and the Redskins again. This stretch, starting with Sunday’s victory, looms large. Yes, the team survived a four-game losing streak in this range a year ago, but slumping that badly twice and expecting to be a title contender would be unlikely. The Cowboys fought back to 3-3 but are vulnerable, even at home, where they were blown out by the Bears on a national stage. This one is a Sunday afternoon game matching the first- and second-place teams in the NFC East, with the Giants looking to avenge their season-opening loss at the hands of the Cowboys at MetLife Stadium.

What the heck? Before the Giants head to Dallas, they will focus on fixing their run defense. It was fairly putrid, though the Cowboys’ Tony Romo isn’t as dynamic a running threat as Griffin. The Redskins threw a lot of option plays at them, but the Giants just played bad assignment football. They overran plays, took bad angles and pursued and tackled poorly. It resulted in 248 yards on the ground for Washington. It’s one thing for Griffin to rip off a 28-yard run and finish with 89 on the game (on nine carries), it’s quite another for Alfred Morris to gash the Giants for 120 yards, including a long of 30 and many coming on basic power plays, and for FB Darrel Young (he of the 17 career carries) to go for 16 yards on one attempt. Most of the damage came in the first half, and the Giants did force a key Morris fumble to turn the tide in the second half. But that kind of 60-minute effort won’t cut it going forward, especially against Murray (who broke their backs with a 48-yard run in Week One), if he returns from injury." Read more...