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3 reasons the Cowboys dominated the Giants on ‘Sunday Night Football’

It was a rough night for the visiting team.

The Cowboys welcomed the Giants to AT&T Stadium for the season opener of Sunday Night Football, and things did not go the Giants’ way. The Cowboys trounced them, wearing down the Giants defense en route to a 19-3 win.

Dallas held the Giants scoreless through the better part of three quarters, when New York finally managed to get into position to kick a field goal. But the defense had no answer for the Dallas offense, which was at full strength with Ezekiel Elliott on the field.

The Giants’ offensive line is a problem

New York’s offensive attack was bland and one-dimensional, mainly because Eli Manning barely had time to get the ball out. There was virtually no ground game, either. Pass protection and run blocking left a lot to be desired.

It started early, with the Cowboys’ offensive line giving up a sack while they were featured doing their Sunday Night Football introductions.

Manning was sacked four times and hit three times, and the Giants managed just 35 yards on the ground. It’ll be a long season in New York if the line can’t get it together.

Odell Beckham Jr. was out, and his team desperately needs him

Manning finished his day with 189 passing yards, one interception, and no touchdowns. Line play was part of it, but Manning was clearly missing Odell Beckham Jr., who is recovering from an ankle injury he suffered in preseason.

Evan Engram and Sterling Shepard each had 44 yards. But Brandon Marshall was held to just one catch, which was a problem.

Beckham finished his 2016 season with twice as many yards as Sterling Shepard, the Giants’ second-best receiver last year. His absence is definitely felt.

Having him on the field would have made things a lot more difficult for the Cowboys’ defense, and it’s safe to assume Manning can’t wait to have Beckham healthy and back on the field.

The Cowboys offense is just hard to stop

Dallas kept control of the game throughout, coming after Manning relentlessly and winning the time of possession battle. The offense was just about impossible for the Giants to stop.

The Cowboys had to settle for field goals three times in the first half, but Jason Witten finally got them into the end zone. He’s not showing any signs of slowing down.

And the Cowboys’ offense just wore the Giants down, as you can see on this Dez Bryant run, where a huge chunk of his yards after the catch come with him dragging a bunch of Giants defenders along with him.

If any play is emblematic of how mismatched the Giants and Cowboys were on this particular night, it’s this one. Cole Beasley somehow pulls this catch in one-handed off of the nameplate on his jersey. We’ve never seen anything like it.

Sunday just wasn’t your night, Giants. But you’ll get a rematch in Week 14.