Prior to the start of the 2017 season, there’s no way the New York Giants could have envisioned that in the final month of the season they would be out of the playoff race and have to play the role as spoilers.
This season for the New York Giants has boiled down to this embarrassing moment. Right now, aren’t fighting for a playoff spot. Instead, they are playing the role of spoiler as they take on the rival Dallas Cowboys (6-6) Sunday at 1 p.m. at MetLife Stadium.
The Cowboys won the Week 1 matchup 19-3 heavily in part of Ezekiel Elliott rushing for 104 yards on 24 carries.
Elliott will miss Sunday’s game as he will be serving the fifth game of his six-game suspension. But Alfred Morris is a more than capable replacement for Elliott, as he rushed for 127 yards on 27 carries and scored a touchdown in the Cowboys 38-14 win over the Washington Redskins last Thursday.
Based on expectations coming into this season, 2017 is the most dismal season in the 93-year history of the New York Giants.
They’ve lost their best player in Odell Beckham Jr. for the season in Week 5 to a fractured ankle. They’ve had several key players get suspended and were all but eliminated from playoff contention come Halloween night. They ended Eli Manning’s 210-game streak for Geno Smith, and this week they fired their head coach and general manager.
The lone bright spot for the Giants this year has been the play of their rookie tight end Evan Engram, who leads all rookie tight ends in receptions, yards and touchdowns.
But on Sunday, the Giants have a chance to all but end the Cowboys playoff hopes which would be a delight to the organization and their fans.
There’s currently four teams ahead of the Cowboys for the final Wild Card berth in the NFC (Panthers, Falcons, Lions, and Packers). The Panthers and Falcons both currently have 8 wins, and even though the Packers are 6-6 like the Cowboys, they hold the tie-breaker advantage having beating the Cowboys in Week 5 by a score of 35-31.
So if the Giants defeat the Cowboys on Sunday, Dallas will suffer its seventh loss and have a very slim shot at making the playoffs as the likelihood is that it will take 10 wins to get in.
No matter what the teams’ records are, Giants versus Cowboys is always an important game between these two bitter rivals.
While the Giants didn’t expect that they would be watching the playoffs on the couch this season, if they win on Sunday they can take satisfaction in the fact that they were the ones that sentenced the Cowboys to playoff purgatory.