Dec 24, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Los Angeles Rams inside linebacker Alec Ogletree (52) reacts as he walks off the field after his team defeated the Tennessee Titans 27-23 during the second half at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports (Jim Brown)
Dec 24, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Los Angeles Rams inside linebacker Alec Ogletree (52) reacts as he walks off the field after his team defeated the Tennessee Titans 27-23 during the second half at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports (Jim Brown)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

New Giants GM Dave Gettleman lamented last week how difficult it is to find linebackers in the college draft, since so many of the best ones line up at other positions like safety or defensive end.

So he went and found a linebacker in the NFL instead.

Gettleman gave the Giants a much-needed boost at the linebacker position on Wednesday when he officially acquired Alec Ogletree in a trade with the Los Angeles Rams. The Giants will send a fourth and sixth-round pick in this year's NFL draft to L.A. in return for the 26-year-old inside linebacker and the Rams' seventh-round pick in 2019.

"We're very excited to have made the trade for Alec," Gettleman said in a statement. "He gives us our defensive quarterback. He was a two-time captain with the Rams, voted on by his teammates. He's a leader, and that's very important to us. Just as important, he's a quality three-down MIKE linebacker. We're just thrilled to have him."

The fourth-rounder the Giants are giving up is their "comp pick" in this year's draft -- 135th overall. And the trade will be official when the new league year starts on March 14.

And just like that, Gettleman paid the kind of attention to the Giants' linebacker spot that has been lacking for more than a decade. They haven't sent a linebacker to the Pro Bowl since Antonio Pierce in 2006, and really haven't had one close since.

Gettleman knew he had to find linebackers, though, because the Giants are going to transition from a 4-3 defense to a 3-4 scheme under new defensive coordinator James Bettcher. But as he said at the NFL scouting combine last week, finding qualified linebackers coming out of college isn't easy.

"I's hard because there's all these kind of bastardized linebackers that do funky things," Gettleman said. "What it comes down to with a linebacker is: Is he instinctive? Can he run? Is he athletic? Is he smart? That's really what it is."

Apparently the 6-2, 235-pound Ogletree was all that and more to Gettleman. He had been one of the Rams' best defensive players and a two-time team captain. He had 95 tackles, two sacks and one interception (which he returned for a touchdown) last season. And last October, he signed a four-year, $42 million contract extension with the Rams that included $21 million guaranteed and a $7 million roster bonus that is due later this month.



Ogletree carries a $10 million cap hit for 2018 (according to overthecap.com) - a hefty price considering the Giants were only projected to have about $24 million in space under $177.2 million NFL salary cap when the free-agent market opens on March 14. The Giants will likely do some simple cap maneuvering to reduce his cap hit to $4.75 million, which they can do by converting his roster bonus to a signing bonus. That should still leave them enough room to make their expected run at free-agent guard Andrew Norwell, who figures to command a deal worth $12 million per year.

The Giants' pursuit of Ogletree, though, was a long time coming. They were actually interested in him as far back as 2013, when he was coming out of Georgia as one of the top linebackers in the draft. He had some injury issues and character concerns (a suspension for violating team rules) in college that worried some teams. But he was in the conversation when the Giants picked 19th that year, according to a team source.

They picked offensive lineman Justin Pugh instead, leaving Ogletree to fall to the Rams at No. 30.

This move is huge for a Giants linebacker corps that was filled with uncertainty, and not just because of the switch to a 3-4. Both Jonathan Casillas and Devon Kennard are unrestricted free agents, with Casillas unlikely to re-sign. And there's been no indication the Giants are close to a reunion with Kennard. Middle linebacker B.J. Goodson has suffered through a myriad of injuries during his first two NFL seasons, and veterans Kelvin Sheppard and Keenan Robinson are unrestricted free agents, too.

That's why the Giants were so willing to pay a pretty high price. They needed an influx of youth and speed to their defense, especially in the middle of the field, as well as a linebacker with experience in the 3-4. The move shows Gettleman is serious about rebuilding the Giants this offseason, and fixing areas that have been problems for them for years.

It also shows he's serious about giving players clean slates, because Ogletree is familiar to the Giants for more than just his play. In a late-December game in St. Louis in 2014, he famously ignited a wild brawl when he delivered a late hit to Giants receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. driving him to the ground out of bounds and taking a swipe at his head after the play.

The NFL ended up handing out more than $100,000 in fines to Giants and Rams players, though Ogletree only got slapped with a fine of $8,268 for a late hit.


Garrett Dickerson Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY SPORTS (Danielle Parhizkaran)
Garrett Dickerson Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY SPORTS (Danielle Parhizkaran)

In the wake of TE Evan Engram's sprained MCL, the Giants decided to sign practice squad TE Garrett Dickerson on Tuesday, per NorthJersey.com's Art Stapleton. Stapleton adds the corresponding move for adding Dickerson was waiving WR/KR Kaelin Clay. 

Engram suffered his injury during Sunday's game against the Texans after taking a low hit following a catch. It is unknown how long he will be out, so Dickerson -- an undrafted rookie -- gets the promotion.

The 6-foot-3, 249-pound tight end played four seasons at Northwestern University, where he hauled in 88 receptions for 896 yards and nine touchdowns over his college career.

Tags: Evan Engram
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The Giants offensive line saw major improvements against the Texans on Sunday. Patrick Omameh had a bounce-back game, and John Greco didn't miss a beat in his first start at center since Jon Halapio went on the IR. 

But the biggest story coming from this line was right tackle Chad Wheeler getting the start over Ereck Flowers, who was benched by head coach Pat Shurmur. Nobody knew what to expect from the undrafted tackle from USC, especially going up against one of the NFL's most prolific pass rushers in DE J.J. Watt. 

Wheeler, though, seemed to hold his own against Watt. But was it enough to say that Wheeler was an upgrade from Flowers? Here's what Shurmur had to say about his new right tackle...

Tags: Eli Manning, Ereck Flowers
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Dec 22, 2016; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Giants defensive tackle Damon Harrison (98) takes the field for action against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. The Philadelphia Eagles won 24-19. (Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports)
Dec 22, 2016; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Giants defensive tackle Damon Harrison (98) takes the field for action against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. The Philadelphia Eagles won 24-19. (Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports)

Giants DT Damon Harrison was replaced by B.J. Hill for part of the second half during Week 3's win over the Texans, leading some to believe that he was dealing with an injury.

Harrison seemed to give the all-clear on Tuesday.

Click below to see his tweet...

Tags: Damon Harrison
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Sep 23, 2018; Houston, TX, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) makes a reception during the second quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina)
Sep 23, 2018; Houston, TX, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) makes a reception during the second quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Giants stepped back from the brink of yet another disastrous season with a 22-17 win in Houston on Sunday, as they put together just enough offense to improve their record to 1-2.

Here are grades for each specific position group...

Tags: Alec Ogletree, Damon Harrison, Eli Apple, Eli Manning, Ereck Flowers, Odell Beckham Jr., Olivier Vernon, Saquon Barkley, Sterling Shepard, Ralph Vacchiano
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Olivier Vernon (54) Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com via USA TODAY NETWORK (Danielle Parhizkaran)
Olivier Vernon (54) Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com via USA TODAY NETWORK (Danielle Parhizkaran)

Giants DE Olivier Vernon has now missed three weeks to start the season, but head coach Pat Shurmur is seeing progress from the team's best pass rusher. 

Vernon, who didn't travel with the team to Houston, was seen doing some work at the Giants' facility on Monday. Shurmur said that he is getting better, but is still listed as day-to-day. 

"Better," Shurmur said on a conference call. "I just happened to see him running around outside my window here, so we'll just have to see. I think we'll consider him day to day and see how far he can come with it. He's making progress, he hasn't had any setbacks, and we just all know that these high ankle sprains take time. "

Tags: Olivier Vernon
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After getting smothered by the Cowboys on Sunday Night Football, Giants RB Saquon Barkley was looking for redemption in Houston. And he got just what he was looking for. 

The Giants' No. 2 overall pick rushed for 82 yards and a touchdown on 17 touches, while collecting five catches for 35 yards as well. 

Barkley set the tone early on with his touchdown run to cap off a great Giants opening drive. Bouncing out to the right and laying a nasty stiff arm on a Texans CB Kareem Jackson, the 21-year-old walked in for his second career touchdown run...

Tags: Saquon Barkley
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Evan Engram (88) Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Evan Engram (88) Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Giants TE Evan Engram suffered a sprained MCL during Sunday's game against the Texans, head coach Pat Shurmur said Monday.

While running down the sideline after a catch, Engram took a low hit to his knee and somersaulted out of bounds. Though he tried walking it off, Engram eventually went to the sideline to get checked out instead. 

Being listed week to week as of now, Shurmur noted "we're waiting to see how extensive it might be." SNY's Ralph Vacchiano said that the Giants do expect him to miss at least a couple games. It will all depend on the severity of Engram's sprain, and how he responds to treatment moving forward...

Tags: Evan Engram
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New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley celebrates his first-quarter touchdown with Eli Manning against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. (Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley celebrates his first-quarter touchdown with Eli Manning against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. (Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports)

Giants rookie running back Saquon Barkley had his third straight game of 100 total yards while Odell Beckham Jr. recorded 109 receiving yards and Eli Manning threw for two touchdowns in Sunday's 27-22 win over the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium.

"That's how I see playing offense," Giants head coach Pat Shurmur said, according to ESPN's Jordan Raanan. "You deal up a progression, you dial it up and the ball goes where it is supposed to go if it gets out on time."

The Giants, who had scored just two touchdowns in two games, including Barkley's highlight-reel 68-yard touchdown in the season-opener, scored three on Sunday for their first victory of the season. 

Tags: Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr.
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Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Giants gave the NFL a look at what they can do when they get some good offensive line play on Sunday afternoon. At least they did in the first half.

And that turned out to be enough.

Behind their new-look line -- Chad Wheeler in for benched right tackle Ereck Flowers and John Greco in for injured center Jon Halapio -- Eli Manning had time to throw, Saquon Barkley had room to run, and the Giants' maligned offense managed to score on all four of their first half possessions enroute to a 27-22 win over the Houston Texans. And the blocking absolutely made all the difference.

Tags: Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr., Saquon Barkley, Sterling Shepard, Ralph Vacchiano
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Giants notch 1st win 00:00:59
Odell Beckham Jr., Pat Shurmur and Eli Manning comment on the Giants' strong offensive effort in their 27-22 victory over the Texans.

Eli Manning and the Giants scored 20 points in the first half and held on to beat the Texans on Sunday afternoon, 27-21. >> Box score

The Giants were sharp on both sides of the ball in the first half and built a 20-3 advantage heading into halftime. With Ereck Flowers benched, Manning moved the offense down the field with ease, leading to Saquon Barkley's 15-yard touchdown run and eventually Rhett Ellison's 16-yard touchdown catch before the end of the half.

The Giants kept the Texans out of the end zone in the first half, limiting them to three field goals, but became porous at times in the second half. Still, they limited Houston to just one touchdown in the game, thanks in part to Alec Ogletree's interception and Donte Deayon's fumble recovery. 

Tags: Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr., Sterling Shepard
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Dec 31, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants tight end Rhett Ellison (85) rushes for yards after a catch against the Washington Redskins during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Dec 31, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants tight end Rhett Ellison (85) rushes for yards after a catch against the Washington Redskins during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Rhett Ellison caught a 16-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter for the Giants' second touchdown of the game.

Click below to wath the video...

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Sep 23, 2018; Houston, TX, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) runs the ball during the first quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina)
Sep 23, 2018; Houston, TX, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) runs the ball during the first quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina)

Giants RB Saquon Barkley put the Giants on the board in the first quarter with a 15-yard touchdown run.

See the video below...

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New York Giants offensive tackle Ereck Flowers (74) blocks during an NFL preseason football game against the Cleveland Browns. (AP)
New York Giants offensive tackle Ereck Flowers (74) blocks during an NFL preseason football game against the Cleveland Browns. (AP)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: In a long-awaited, though, possibly dangerous move, the Giants are benching their embattled right tackle Ereck Flowers Sunday in Houston and replacing him with second-year pro Chad Wheeler, according to a team source.

The move is dangerous, considering Wheeler will be staring at all-pro Texans defensive end J.J. Watt for most of the day, but was deemed necessary by the coaches, the source said, confirming the initial report from NFL Network. The 24-year-old Wheeler didn't appear to be much of an upgrade over Flowers during five starts last season, but Flowers' performance and progress have been poor enough that the coaches felt they had to do something.

Wheeler took most, but not all, of the first-team reps during the week, the source said. It's possible the two will split time at right tackle, but that would be unusual. Giants head coach Pat Shurmur apparently didn't make the decision to start Wheeler until late in the week, though coaches had determined that he would play a lot, at the very least.

Tags: Ereck Flowers, Ralph Vacchiano
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Sep 16, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) and quarterback Eli Manning (10) (Tim Heitman)
Sep 16, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) and quarterback Eli Manning (10) (Tim Heitman)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

THE GAME

The Giants (0-2) at the Houston Texans (0-2) at NRG Stadium in Houston on Sunday, Sept. 23, at 1 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER

The temperatures should be in the upper 80s and will feel much hotter than that, and there is the possibility of thunderstorms. So yeah, they're probably going to close the roof.

Tags: Eli Apple, Eli Manning, Ereck Flowers, Houston Texans, Odell Beckham Jr., Olivier Vernon, Saquon Barkley, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Vincent Carchietta)
(Vincent Carchietta)

Giants co-owner John Mara didn't picture an 0-2 start with his new regime in place. But, though it may not be what he envisioned, he isn't going to make any drastic changes just yet. 

So far, this year's Giants have been reminiscent of last season, especially with the offensive struggles. Among them is the play of 37-year-old QB Eli Manning, who hasn't been able to get off to a fast start despite the weapons around him. 

Mara, though, is sticking by Manning's side. 

Tags: Eli Manning
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Vernon talks recovery 00:00:33
Olivier Vernon talks about his continued recovery from the injury that will sideline him again this weekend against Houston

With the Giants taking on the Texans this Sunday, they will once again be without DE Olivier Vernon

Vernon is dealing with a high ankle sprain, and hasn't been able to practice let alone make it out during a game this season. Along with Pat Shurmur, Vernon talked about continuing to trust the process of getting fully healthy, while being a positive impact on the sidelines. 

Tags: Olivier Vernon
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May 21, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants cornerback Eli Apple (24) after practice at Quest Diagnostic Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
May 21, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants cornerback Eli Apple (24) after practice at Quest Diagnostic Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Giants LB Olivier Vernon (ankle) and CB Eli Apple (groin) have been ruled out for Sunday's game against the Texans in Houston.

Head coach Pat Shurmur said late last week that the Giants were hopeful Vernon would be able to return for Week 3, but he has not made any meaningful progress. 

LB Connor Barwin (knee) and TE Evan Engram (ankle) were limited in practice earlier this week, but are both expected to play. 

Tags: Eli Apple, Olivier Vernon
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A general view of a New York Giants helmet on the turf before the game against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. (Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports)
A general view of a New York Giants helmet on the turf before the game against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. (Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports)

The Giants are the third-most valuable franchise in the NFL, with a current value of $3.3 billion, according to Forbes' 21st annual NFL Team Valuations list

According to Forbes, the Giants' total revenue for the 2017 season was $493 million.

The Cowboys ($5 billion valuation) and Patriots ($3.8 billion) came in first and second on the list, respectively. 

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New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. during warmups before a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. during warmups before a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. is tired of losing, and hopeful Big Blue's stagnant offense can come alive. 

"I don't remember the last time I won a game was," Beckham said Thursday. "Maybe some cards or something, but not an NFL football game. I haven't won one in a long time. It's definitely not a good feeling, not something you come here to do. You don't come here to lose, you just don't."

After a big Week 1 performance during the Giants' loss to the Jaguars, Beckham was largely shut down during their Week 2 loss to the Cowboys, catching four passes for 51 yards while being targeted just nine times.

Tags: Odell Beckham Jr., Danny Abriano
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New York Giants defensive end Olivier Vernon (William Hauser)
New York Giants defensive end Olivier Vernon (William Hauser)

Giants LB Olivier Vernon (ankle), who has missed the first two games of the season, has still not returned to practice. And it appears highly unlikely he'll be able to play on Sunday against the Texans. 

Head coach Pat Shurmur said late last week that the Giants were hopeful Vernon would be able to return for Week 3, but he has not made any meaningful progress. 

CB Eli Apple (groin) also missed practice Thursday, while LB Connor Barwin (knee) and TE Evan Engram (ankle) were limited.

Tags: Eli Apple, Evan Engram, Olivier Vernon
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Odell Beckham Jr. (13) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Odell Beckham Jr. (13) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. has a bone to pick with the NFL. 

On Thursday, Beckham took to Twitter to announce his frustration with the league constantly administrating random drug tests on him. Sarcastically claiming it was his "997,546" random test, Beckham says these screenings are taking time away from him doing his job. 

CLICK BELOW TO SEE THE TWEET

Tags: Odell Beckham Jr.
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Many have given their case as to where the blame should be placed for the Giants' 0-2 start to the season. The offensive line's shaky play seems to be at the top, with head coach Pat Shurmur taking a brunt of the backlash as well. 

And then there's the play of 37-year-old QB Eli Manning that is in the spotlight as well. Former Jet and current ESPN Damien Woody is on that bandwagon. 

Appearing on ESPN's "Get Up" morning show on Wednesday, Woody ripped Manning's level of play, and basically said he's finished after just two weeks into the new season...

Tags: Eli Manning, Evan Engram, Odell Beckham Jr., Saquon Barkley, Sterling Shepard
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Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur coaches against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur coaches against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Pat Shurmur was an assistant coach in Philadelphia back in 2007 and he remembers the tornado that swirled 90 miles to the north when the Giants started 0-2 that year. He recalled seeing a back page of a newspaper with a picture of Eli Manning and Tom Coughlin under a headline that wondered "Will they survive?"

"Then, lo and behold, they won a Super Bowl," Shurmur said on Wednesday. "Now that doesn't say that's what's going to happen (now), but you just have to play it out."

His point was that patience is sometimes necessary and it can be rewarded. Of course, Coughlin and Manning were in Year 4 with the Giants when the walls (and the tabloids) started closing in on them during that 0-2 start.

Tags: Eli Manning, Saquon Barkley
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Olivier Vernon (54) Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com via USA TODAY NETWORK (Danielle Parhizkaran)
Olivier Vernon (54) Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com via USA TODAY NETWORK (Danielle Parhizkaran)

Giants LB Olivier Vernon (ankle), who has missed the first two games of the season, has still not returned to practice.

Head coach Pat Shurmur said late last week that the Giants were hopeful Vernon would be able to return for Week 3 on Sunday against the Texans.

CB Eli Apple (groin) and LB Connor Barwin (knee) also missed practice Wednesday.

Tags: Olivier Vernon
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Saquon stays positive 00:01:00
Giants running back Saquon Barkley stays positive despite Big Blue's tough start, saying "in this locker room, nobody is overreacting."

Giants RB Saquon Barkley is not panicking about the team's 0-2 start -- something he believes is a much bigger concern outside the locker room than inside.

"In this locker room, nobody is overreacting," Barkley said Wednesday. "People outside are overreacting. We understand that 0-2 is not a great start, but this is not college."

On the play of the offensive line -- Barkley and the team's other running backs have gotten blown up early more than any other running backs in the NFL, and Eli Manning has been sacked eight times -- Barkley said it's "common" for people who don't play the sport to place the blame on one thing, noting it's a group effort. 

Tags: Saquon Barkley, Danny Abriano
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The Giants' 39-20 win over the Broncos capped Bill Parcells' first championship season. (AP)
The Giants' 39-20 win over the Broncos capped Bill Parcells' first championship season. (AP)

ESPN's Ian O'Connor's new book, "Belichick: The Making of the Greatest Football Coach of All Time," has many revealing tales in its pages. And of course, Belichick's time with the Giants is highlighted. 

In particular, O'Connor spoke with former Giants head coach Bill Parcells, who worked alongside Belichick for years in New York. Parcells touched on Super Bowl XXV specifically, though, and it quoted saying he isn't sure why Belichick's game plan from that upset win over the Bills is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. 

Instead, he thinks offensive coordinator Ron Erhardt's game plan should be enshrined. 

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Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. has always strived to be the greatest. But the road to his stardom today in the NFL wasn't the easiest. 

In an interview with comedian Kevin Hart on his web series, "Cold as Balls," Beckham indulged on his football path from his days at LSU and how it didn't go as planned. 

"When I was in college, I wanted to win a national championship," he said. "Made it to the national championship, got blown out. I said I wanted to win a Heisman [Trophy], never came close. Said I wanted to be a top-10 pick, was the 12th pick. So, it was like, now that's the only thing I had left, I gotta win Rookie of the Year."

Tags: Odell Beckham Jr.
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The Giants' offense has sputtered to start their 2018 campaign, even with new pieces on the roster. Rookie RB Saquon Barkley is the biggest fresh face of them all, with players like G Will Hernandez and LT Nate Solder behind him. 

However, Big Blue is facing the same problems it did last season. First and foremost, the "revamped" offensive line hasn't paid any dividends yet as it looks to be the same lackluster group of old. But, even with all their struggles, veteran QB Eli Manning isn't off the hook. 

The Giants' line play forces Manning to roam outside of the pocket, and throw on the run. But Manning can't scramble with quickness when things go awry, making him to either take a sack or force a ball where it shouldn't go. There is also the fact that he is 37, and descending into the final years of his career...

Tags: Eli Manning, Scott Thompson
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Eli Manning (10) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Eli Manning (10) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Giants' rebuilt (save for Ereck Flowers) offensive line has been a mess during the first two weeks, but Eli Manning said the Giants being 0-2 is on everyone, calling it a "combination of stuff."

"There was nothing that we didn't have an answer for," he said Monday. "Enough things might mess up a little bit, it's a combination of everybody, it's not just the offensive line. When sacks are happening obviously the offensive line gets blamed most of the time but that's not necessarily the case. You got running backs, you got quarterbacks, you got receivers, everybody plays a part in that.''

Manning's point isn't completely off base...

Tags: Eli Manning, Danny Abriano
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Hall of Fame linebacker Lawrence Taylor believes his former team, the Giants, still own New York when it comes to the Giants-Jets rivalry. (Ed Mulholland)
Hall of Fame linebacker Lawrence Taylor believes his former team, the Giants, still own New York when it comes to the Giants-Jets rivalry. (Ed Mulholland)

Being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame is a blessing, but some of those enshrined want more than their bust, ring, and gold jacket. 

In a letter addressed to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith, and Pro Football Hall of Fame President C. David Baker, Eric Dickerson -- the chairman of the newly-assembled Hall of Fame Board -- sent out demands that includes "health insurance and an annual salary for all Hall of Famers that includes a share of league revenue."

"They see us honored and mythologized before games and at halftime, and it would be reasonable if they thought life was good for us," Dickerson wrote. "But on balance, it's not. As a group we are struggling with sever health and financial problems. To build this game, we sacrificed our bodies. In many cases, and despite the fact that we were led to believe otherwise, we sacrificed our minds."

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Sep 16, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) leaves the field after the game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Heitman)
Sep 16, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) leaves the field after the game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Heitman)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Giants' entire offseason plan was built around the premise that Eli Manning had "years" left as a productive, and maybe even an elite, starting quarterback. That's why the Giants went into win-now mode, believing they had the quarterback to lead them on a championship run in the next two years.

Two games later, it sure looks like their plan was flawed -- that they were much farther away from contention than they ever imagined. But Manning doesn't deserve the blame for that...

Tags: Eli Manning, Saquon Barkley, Ralph Vacchiano
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Sep 16, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) stiff arms New York Giants defensive back Landon Collins (21) in the first quarter at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Heitman)
Sep 16, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) stiff arms New York Giants defensive back Landon Collins (21) in the first quarter at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Heitman)

After a loss in Dallas last night, the Giants have once again started their season 0-2. It is the fifth time in six years that this has occurred for Big Blue. 

But Giants S Landon Collins is sure things are going to turn around. Collins tweeted out a message for all those doubting the Giants already, saying the team is willing to put in the work to figure things out and bounce back. 

CLICK BELOW TO SEE THE TWEET

Tags: Landon Collins
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New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning talks to center Jon Halapio as he is carted off the field after being injured in the third quarter against Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning talks to center Jon Halapio as he is carted off the field after being injured in the third quarter against Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)

Giants C Jon Halapio suffered fractures to his lower leg and ankle during last night's game against the Cowboys, the team announced Monday. Though it hasn't been officially announced, the expectation is Halapio will be out for the rest of the season. 

Halapio got crushed underneath the line during a run play, and was in clear pain on the turf. John Greco had to come in for him after he was carted off the field in an aircast. 

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: The Giants' offensive line is so bad and so thin, the loss of any player is significant. But center is such a key position, this might be a really big blow.

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 (Tim Heitman)
(Tim Heitman)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Giants are a team in crisis at 0-2 after a miserable, 20-13 loss in Dallas on Sunday night. And they're back to their same old offensive problems.

Here's a look at how their specific position groups played on Sunday night...

Tags: Alec Ogletree, Eli Apple, Eli Manning, Evan Engram, Janoris Jenkins, Odell Beckham Jr., Olivier Vernon, Saquon Barkley, Ralph Vacchiano
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Sep 16, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys linebacker Damien Wilson (57) causes a fumble on a sack of New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) in the third quarter at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Heitman)
Sep 16, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys linebacker Damien Wilson (57) causes a fumble on a sack of New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) in the third quarter at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Heitman)

This isn't how the Giants wanted to start their season again, but nonetheless, they finds themselves 0-2 for the third straight year after a loss to the Cowboys Sunday night. 

It has been the norm for the Giants of late. How many times have they started the season on the wrong note? 

Tags: Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr., Scott Thompson
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New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur coaches from the sidelines in the third quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur coaches from the sidelines in the third quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Giants were so sure that a healthy Odell Beckham Jr., a rebuilt offensive line and the addition of Saquon Barkley would be enough to wake them out of their years-long offensive nightmare.

Two games into the season, it looks like they may have been wrong. Really wrong.

Their offense was absolutely pathetic on Sunday night in a 20-13 loss to the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. They barely got anything going either on the ground or in the air. They hardly even threatened to score any points until the game was basically over. And if it weren't for Barkley (14 catches for 80 yards, 11 rushes for 28 yards), they would've spent the game looking like they were standing still.

Tags: Dallas Cowboys, Eli Manning, Ereck Flowers, Evan Engram, Odell Beckham Jr., Olivier Vernon, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley runs against Dallas Cowboys defensive back Jeff Heath in the first quarter at AT&T Stadium. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley runs against Dallas Cowboys defensive back Jeff Heath in the first quarter at AT&T Stadium. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)

Giants rookie running back Saquon Barkley was New York's leading rusher and receiver in Sunday's 20-13 loss to the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium.

Barkley finished with 28 rushing yards on 11 carries and 80 receiving yards on 14 receptions, the most in a game in franchise history, as the Giants fell to 0-2 for the second straight season.

Through their first two games of the season, the Giants have scored just 31 points and totaled 579 yards and two touchdowns. Barkley, alone, has accounted for one of the touchdowns and 236 total yards (or 41 percent of New York's total offense).

Tags: Dallas Cowboys, Saquon Barkley
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The Giants started the season 0-2 for the second straight season with a 20-13 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday at AT&T Stadium.

New York was outgained 299-254 as Odell Beckham Jr. was held to four catches for 50 yards and the team was limited to just 35 yards on the ground.

Eli Manning was sacked six times for 59 yards and lost a fumble, while Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott threw for 160 yards and a touchdown and ran for 46 yards.

Tags: Dallas Cowboys, Eli Manning, Evan Engram, Odell Beckham Jr., Saquon Barkley
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Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) celebrates his touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. The touchdown was the first of his NFL career. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) celebrates his touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. The touchdown was the first of his NFL career. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

THE GAME

The Giants (0-1) at the Dallas Cowboys (0-1) at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Tex., on Sunday, Sept. 16 at 8:20 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER

A warm day with temperatures near 90 should cool off into the upper 70s by kickoff. Whether that matters or not depends on whether Jerry Jones has the roof open or closed.

WHAT IT MEANS

Did somebody say "Must win"? OK, I did. Since 1990, there have been 231 teams that have started the season 0-2 and only 28 of them (12 percent) made the playoffs. Those are not good odds for the loser of this game. And yes, yes, the Giants did it in 2007. We all remember that. But that's the exception, not the rule. The reality is that whoever loses this game will be in a suddenly quick hole after opening the season with dreams of competing for the NFC East title. If either the Redskins or Eagles win (they're both 1-0) that hole is going to feel very deep, too.

Tags: Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr., Olivier Vernon, Saquon Barkley, Ralph Vacchiano
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DraftKings Sportsbook Minute 00:01:05
Pay Mayo takes a look at the Giants/Cowboys Week 2 matchup in the latest DraftKings Sportsbook Minute

What is the path for the Giants +3 this weekend?

Pat Mayo says that it's all about slowing down Ezekiel Elliott and exploiting the Dallas defense in a way that they couldn't against Jacksonville in Week 1

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Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) throws a pass as offensive guard Will Hernandez (71) blacks Jacksonville Jaguars defensive tackle Malik Jackson (97) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) throws a pass as offensive guard Will Hernandez (71) blacks Jacksonville Jaguars defensive tackle Malik Jackson (97) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Giants QB Eli Manning has a new head coach and a clean slate this season, but he is eager to show the team that he can still perform at a high level as starting quarterback.

"I want to prove them right," Manning said in an interview with Tyler Dunne of Bleacher Report. "That they did make the right decision. I think it's still about keeping the focus on my jobs, my assignments, going out there and playing well, getting the game plan and being a good leader for this group."

Manning is likely feeling more comfortable under coach Pat Shurmur, as well. Backup quarterback Kyle Lauletta explained that Manning was forced by coach Ben McAdoo to change his footwork last season, which could have pushed Manning outside of his comfort zone. This season, he is going back to his original plan.

Tags: Eli Manning
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Olivier Vernon (54) Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com via USA TODAY NETWORK (Danielle Parhizkaran)
Olivier Vernon (54) Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com via USA TODAY NETWORK (Danielle Parhizkaran)

 Giants LB Olivier Vernon (ankle) has been ruled out for Sunday night's game against the Cowboys in Dallas.

Head coach Pat Shurmur said the Giants are hopeful Vernon will be able to return next week. 

New York doesn't have any players listed as doubtful, and LB Tae Davis (hamstring) is questionable.

Tags: Janoris Jenkins, Olivier Vernon, Sterling Shepard, Wayne Gallman
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New York Giants' Landon Collins (21) returns an interception for a touchdown during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the New York Jets Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)
New York Giants' Landon Collins (21) returns an interception for a touchdown during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the New York Jets Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)

Cowboys QB Dak Prescott fired back at Giants S Landon Collins a day after Collins said keeping the ball in Prescott's hands would give Big Blue a better shot at winning.

"Challenge accepted," Prescott told reporters on Thursday. "Challenge accepted."

Collins said Wednesday that the team needs to focus on stopping explosive running back Ezekiel Elliott on Sunday night against the Cowboys. And as far as Prescott? Not so much...

Tags: Landon Collins, Danny Abriano
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Odell talks Giants offense 00:01:16
Odell Beckham Jr. talks about the great potential of the Giants offense and having fun with rookie Saquon Barkley?s touchdown ball

Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. knew rookie running back Saquon Barkley's 68-yard touchdown run was a long time coming, even if last Sunday's 20-15 loss to the Jaguars was his NFL debut.

And now, Barkley has his souvenir ball ... again.

Beckham posted a video earlier in the week of him jokingly stealing Barkley's first touchdown ball in the locker room, and admitted the ball is back where it should be: in Barkley's possession.

Tags: Odell Beckham Jr.
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Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) can't reach an overthrown pass while defended by Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey (20) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Sep 9, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) can't reach an overthrown pass while defended by Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey (20) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Shaquille O'Neal was so dominant at basketball in his day that, sometimes, teams would just give up trying to defend him and voluntarily force him to the free throw line all game. The tactic was soon branded "Hack-A-Shaq".

In a different sport, Giants dominant WR Odell Beckham understands the treatment. The explosive receiver twice forced blatant defensive pass interference calls against the Jaguars, potentially saving touchdowns but giving the Giants first downs. Bechkam compared it to what O'Neal had to deal with.

"Like 'Hack-A-Shaq?' That's fine," Beckham said Thursday.

Tags: Odell Beckham Jr.
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Saquon Barkley (26) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Saquon Barkley (26) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Two of the NFL's premier young running backs will face off on Sunday night in Dallas during primetime with the country watching.

The Giants face the Cowboys and the biggest storyline is Saquon Barkley vs. Zeke Elliot. Barkley is looking forward to lining up against the Cowboys star and the pair have been in contact this season. What have they been talking about?

"He texted me saying congratulations on the touchdown run and the start of the season," Barkley said Thursday. He continued to add that they haven't discussed Sunday's matchup much. "No, not really, not really. Obviously it's a grind week. He's over there preparing to win this game, I'm preparing to win the game for my team, but tremendous, wish him the best of luck to a great dude."

Tags: Saquon Barkley
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Nov 19, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants corner back Janoris Jenkins (20) runs back an interception against the Kansas City Chiefs during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 19, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants corner back Janoris Jenkins (20) runs back an interception against the Kansas City Chiefs during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Giants WR Sterling Shepard (back) returned to practice Thursday as the team prepares for Sunday night's game against the Cowboys in Dallas.

CB Janoris Jenkins left the team facility without participating due to what the Giants said was a family issue -- though the issue was not related to his brother, who was charged with aggravated manslaughter in July, according to Pat Leonard of the Daily News.

LB Tae Davis (hamstring) and RB Wayne Gallman (knee) were limited for a second straight day, while LB Olivier Vernon did not participate. 

Tags: Janoris Jenkins, Olivier Vernon, Sterling Shepard, Wayne Gallman
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Sam Darnold (14) Saquon Barkley (26) Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Sam Darnold (14) Saquon Barkley (26) Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Giants rookie RB Saquon Barkley had himself a solid debut this past Sunday with 106 rushing yards and his first career touchdown run. But, when it comes to New York rookies, it was Jets QB Sam Darnold that got the most attention. 

Darnold led the Jets to a rout of the Lions on Monday night, and it brought about the conversation of the Giants passing on the 21-year-old signal caller to take Barkley in this year's Draft. Some believed the Giants should have gone after a quarterback with the veteran Eli Manning winding down his career. 

However, GM Dave Gettleman proved the Giants are in win-now mode by taking Barkley. And S Landon Collins believes that was the better pick anyway. 

Tags: Landon Collins, Sam Darnold, Saquon Barkley
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Giants prep for Dallas 00:01:02
Pat Shurmur, Landon Collins, and Eli Manning talk about Sunday night's Week 2 NFC East showdown with the Dallas Cowboys.

The Giants didn't see the season opener result they wanted witha 20-15 loss at home against the Jaguars on Sunday. But they can't dwell on that as they look ahead to a tough road matchup against their heated rival -- Dallas Cowboys. 

The Cowboys also suffered a Week 1 loss, so both teams will be looking to rebound on Sunday Night Football. Head coach Pat Shurmur as well as S Landon Collins and QB Eli Manning discuss their matchup against the Cowboys, and how they can get that first win of the season...

 

Tags: Eli Manning, Landon Collins
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