More than anything else, what do the Cowboys have to do to beat the Giants on Monday? None of these division games are ever easy, especially on the road. – M.J. Nelson. / MIDLOTHIAN, TX
Patrik: Impose your will and do it early and, for me, that means a couple things. The Giants need to get off to a fast start at home to try and make a challenged Cowboys offense play from behind for the majority of the game, something that will likely lead to Cooper Rush pressing to make plays and, as such, possibly turning the ball over. Run the ball down their throat with Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard time and again, and use it to set up the play action pass that could yield chunk plays as the game rolls along – largely involving the tight ends (even if Dalton Schultz is unavailable). The defense needs to do what it does best, because Daniel Jones is prone to error, but it's Rush and the offense that will win or lose this game.
Rob: I'll be watching how the left side of the offensive line handles pressure from the Giants' front. Not surprisingly, the Bengals tested Tyler Smith and Matt Farniok with movement up front with mixed results. Farniok particularly had a tough matchup inside with DJ Reader, and if he's the starting left guard again Monday, he'll probably see a decent amount of Giants nose tackle Dexter Lawrence, who's off to a good start. Quarterback Cooper Rush has shown he can thrive in a road environment (see: Minnesota last year) but he'll need adequate time in the pocket to get the job done.
Nick: This will probably be a low-scoring games since both teams are leaning on its defense. That being said, every point will matter and that usually comes down to the kickers. So give me Brett Maher as a true X-Factor for this game. Yes, he's coming up a clutch 50-yard field goal to win the game. And since he's been back, he's 3-for-3 with all the makes occurring from 50+ yards. But now he moves from AT&T Stadium to MetLife Stadium in the Meadowlands. The winds are always swirling around a bit and if memory serves, it was at this stadium where he missed a clutch kick against the Jets back in 2019, to go along with a 62-yard make as well. Let's see how Maher reacts to his first road game of the season.