The last time the New York Giants defeated the Dallas Cowboys was December 11, 2016 — a 10-7 victory at MetLife Stadium that snapped the Cowboys’ 11-game winning streak.
The deciding score was an Eli Manning-to-Odell Beckham Jr. 61-yard touchdown connection in the third quarter. Since that night, the Giants have lost five straight to Dallas and are 7.5-point underdogs going into Monday night.
There are only four players on the Giants’ current roster — Janoris Jenkins, Eli Manning, Sterling Shepard and Zak DeOssie — who were Giants for that game, meaning that 49 players on the roster have never experienced a win over Dallas as Giants.
One player on their roster that has a notch in his belt over the Cowboys is recently-acquired defensive lineman Leonard Williams, who as a New York Jet, participated in their 24-22 Week 6 win over Dallas at MetLife.
How did the Jets, now 1-7, do it? Williams provided some answers. It all starts with clamping down on star running back Ezekiel Elliott.
“What we did is stop the run,” Williams told Tom Rock of Newsday. “We made it tough for to run. If he did get a big gain, we had a lot of bodies on him, put a lot of pressure on the running back, make him hurt a little bit. Get a lot of bodies and helmets on him. We got a lot of hits on the quarterback as well, and that eventually affects the quarterbacks when they are not throwing comfortably.”
But Elliott hasn’t been the thorn the Giants’ side. Quarterback Dak Prescott is the player they can’t seem to pin down. The Giants are hoping Williams can help unlock their inconsistent pass rush.
“We went over a little bit of the personnel with the defensive line,” Williams said. “We talked about the offensive line and the running back and the quarterback, stuff like that. They pretty much got the same thing we were getting at the Jets: Stop the run, get after the quarterback.”
Monday can be a tide-turning game for the Giants and the NFC East, which is a horse race with the Cowboys on top at 4-3 and the Philadelphia Eagles right on their tails at 5-4.
The Giants would finally like to have a say in things.