Tonight’s matchup between the New York Giants (2-0) and Dallas Cowboys (1-1) has ramifications in the NFC East, on each team’s season win total, and potentially in the NFC wild-card race later in the season.
While most of the NFL got the memo that it’s a misuse of draft capital to select a running back high in the NFL Draft, the Giants and Cowboys weren’t among them. No runners went in the first round in the most recent draft, and only four backs have been selected higher than 23rd overall since 2016.
Two take the field tonight: Saquon Barkley (No. 2 overall in 2018) and Ezekiel Elliott (No. 4 overall in 2016).Cowboys @ Giants Game Information
- Location: MetLife Stadium | East Rutherford, NJ
- Time: 8:15 p.m. ET | TV: ABC/ESPN
Since he entered the league where they play for pay, Elliott has produced the most rushing yards (7,491), scrimmage yards (9,728), and 100-yard rushing games (30). While he’s been productive, the OSU man peaked as a rookie and hasn’t been nearly as dynamic over the past two-plus seasons.
Conversely, Barkley has been playing his best football through two games (236 yards, 6.0 YPC) since his rookie campaign. In six career games against the Cowboys, the PSU product has 567 scrimmage yards, while Elliott has ten touchdowns in ten games against Big Blue.Cowboys @ Giants Game Odds @ FanDuel
- Spread: Cowboys +1 (-110) | Giants -1 (-110)
- Moneyline: Cowboys (-106) | Giants (-110)
- Total: OVER 39.5 (-110) | UNDER 39.5 (-110)
The most exciting player in this game is another Penn State alum, linebacker Micah Parsons, who has drawn comparisons to Giants legend Lawrence Taylor. The speedy defender has recorded multiple sacks in the first two contests and is the sixth player with five such games through the first 20 of their career.
New York will minimize Parsons’s opportunities as they have de-emphasized passing. Daniel Jones has attempted just 55 passes this season, with the Chicago Bears as the only team with fewer attempts heading into Week 3.Same Game Parlays @ FanDuel
- Barkley Anytime TD, Elliott Anytime TD (+372)
- Cowboys ML, Rush OVER 210.5 Pass Yds (+261)
- Cowboys ML, UNDER 39.5, Jones UNDER 200.6 Pass Yds (+482)
In just his second career start last week, Cooper Rush threw for 235 yards (TD) with a passer rating of 95.5 as he became just the fifth QB in the Super Bowl era to lead a game-winning drive in the final two minutes (or OT) in his first two starts.
While the Skip Baylesses (and the Jerry Joneses?) would love to see a quarterback controversy in Big D, headman Mike McCarthy isn’t having any of it, stating, “Dak (Prescott) is our quarterback.” He was not wearing shades, nor were any tears shed.
Regardless of who’s under center, the return of wideout Michael Gallup will be a welcomed one to the passing attack.