The New York Football Giants (5-10) are set to host the Dallas Cowboys (6-9) at MetLife Stadium at 1:00 pm eastern on Sunday. The Giants are playing meaningful football in December for the first time in quite a few years. The NFC East is still wide open for Washington, Dallas, and New York, and it will all come down on Sunday. In order for the Giants to win the NFC East on Sunday, they will need to defeat the Cowboys and have Washington lose to the Eagles. If Washington does win Sunday night, the Giants/Cowboys game will not matter. If the Giants do make the playoffs after Sunday, they are most likely hosting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for the wild card round. Here are five Giants to keep an eye on for Sunday’s game.
OLB: Kyler Fackrell
The Giants are expected to activate Kyler Fackrell from IR for Sunday’s game. Fackrell has missed the last four games due to injury. If he is able to be on the field Sunday, it will help the Giants pass rush to be more effective. Fackrell has 3 sacks on the year and an interception he returned for a touch down earlier this season against the Cowboys. The Giants defense has registered just 2 sacks over the last three weeks. They will need to generate a pass rush against veteran QB Andy Dalton to make him uncomfortable in the pocket. He has great weapons on the offense, and the Giants defensive line will need to be disruptive in order to make an impact on defense. Fackrell should bolster the Giants’ pass rush on Sunday.
CB: James Bradberry
In the last matchup between Bradberry and Amari Cooper, Bradberry came out on top. On the day Cooper had two catches for 23 yards. It will be important for Bradberry to be locked-in on his opponent this weekend, as the Cowboys receivers can be dangerous. Between the three of them:
- Amari Cooper: 86 catches, 1,073 yards, 5 TDs
- CeeDee Lamb (R): 69 catches, 892 yards, 5 TDs
- Michael Gallup: 55 catches, 794 yards, 5 TDs.
The Giants secondary will have their hands full this Sunday, but fans should trust in James Bradberry to take care of things on his end. He’s had his best season as a pro, making his first Pro-Bowl this year. As far as the other corners like Isaac Yiadom and Darnay Holmes, they will have to be on their A-game.
WR: Dante Pettis
Many Giants fans were excited last week when Pettis was activated for his first game as a Giant. It took him a while to be activated, especially after he had contracted Covid-19 that kept him ineligible for a few weeks. Pettis had 2 catches for 33 yards last week against the Ravens. With Golden Tate listed as doubtful for Sunday, Pettis could see more of a role. Giants fans should be excited to see him have more of a role for not just Sunday’s game, but into next year. It’s surprising that the Giants have not used him in the return game yet, as he was a specialist in his time with the 49ers. With the Giants having inconsistency at the WR position, look for the Giants’ offense to have a boost with Pettis Sunday.
QB: Daniel Jones
Jones played a clean game last week against the Ravens, despite being sacked 5 times. He didn’t have much help from the offensive line. This week he will be up against another talented front, but also a defense that has had some liabilities in the back end. This game is a big opportunity for not only the Giants, but Jones. This is a game where he can prove to be more than just a “game manager”. If Jones can play well enough to win this game and lead the Giants to the playoffs, his future may be viewed as more trusting and bright. The last thing Jones wants Sunday is an ugly game to end the year. He will need to play with enough steam to keep the train going, and to have coaches, management, and even fans to keep believing in him. This is a big game for the Giants, and hopefully Jones takes it all in and puts a show on display to silence the critics that have blasted him all year.
K: Graham Gano:
Kickers are people too! Graham Gano is having a phenomenal season, and what way to end the regular season with a game-winning field goal, just as the Cowboys did in their last meeting with the Giants. He is 30/31 on the year, beating the Giants field goal record for the regular season, last held by Josh Brown. Gano has been a huge part of the Giants offense as far as points scored, which probably isn’t something to be overly proud of. It shows how much the offense has struggled to score TDs. Having said that, it does show that Gano is very reliable and that he would be a kicker to trust in a situation where the game is on the line, and it all is on his leg. I mentioned it for one game before, and I think I’ll say it again, Gano is going to hit a game-winning field goal this Sunday.
This will be a hard-fought divisional game and fans have so much to be excited for, and yet concerned regarding the Giants future. If you missed it, check out my latest article: https://366sportsnetwork.com/2020/12/27/reasons-for-excitement-concern-for-giants-post-season-possibility/
About Dylan Davis
Dylan Davis is a graduate of the State University of New York at Canton, where he obtained a B.A.A in Sport Management. He is a former athlete of football and baseball and sports fan for much of his life. Dylan creates content for 366 Sports and New York Giants 366, and is also a host on his own show, “The J&D Sports Show”.