The Giants were in the driver's seat for the first half of 2012, but injuries and inconsistent play from Eli Manning led to a rapid decline in the standings. New York went 3-5 over the final eight games to finish 9-7 and miss the playoffs. The team will be leaning on first-round pick Justin Pugh to shore up the offensive line, but they still have major question marks at the linebacker position. The good news is that Jason Pierre-Paul returned to practice this week and should help the pass rush if he stays healthy.
Dallas is starting over with a new defensive scheme, as the team hired Monte Kiffin to switch to his trademark Tampa 2. Jason Garrett is starting the season on the hot seat and already was stripped of his playcalling duties -- Bill Callahan will be calling the plays this year.
Despite the near-constant drama in Dallas, most experts are picking them to beat the Giants this week. Eight of 10 ESPN panelists are picking the Cowboys, and they are also favored by six of eight analysts on CBS Sports. The current line favors Dallas by 3.5 points, and five of eight CBS experts expect them to cover the spread.