Scoreless in the season-opening loss to the Cowboys, the Giants lost six of their past seven games and are preparing their third starting quarterback in as many games for Sunday’s rematch in Dallas.
New York (2-7) has scored only eight offensive touchdowns in nine games and crash-lands into the NFC East matchup with more concerns than can be counted.
The worries start with rookie quarterback Tommy DeVito. He’s thrust into the unexpected role of starter against a Dallas defense that posted seven sacks in a 40-0 beatdown of the Giants back in Week 1.
DeVito, a rookie who played his college ball at Illinois and Syracuse, completed 15 of 20 passes for 175 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions against the Raiders, coming off the bench when Daniel Jones suffered a season-ending knee injury.
“He’s putting everything he has into it,” Daboll said of DeVito. “He’s looking forward to the opportunity and he’ll be out there with the first group, we had a good walkthrough with him so he’s doing everything he can do to put himself in a good position to be ready to go.”
Two weeks ago, the Giants lost quarterback Tyrod Taylor to a rib injury. Taylor is on injured reserve.
Losses are taking a toll. The Giants are coming off a 30-6 loss at Las Vegas, where former New York linebacker Antonio Pierce was making his head coaching debut. Losing Jones puts the Giants in a dire situation offensively, especially considering the revolving door of injuries on the offensive line this season.
“It’s devastating,” left tackle Andrew Thomas said of Jones’ injury. “One of my teammates. One of my good friends. It sucks to hear news like that.”
Because Taylor was placed on injured reserve, the Giants also added veteran backup Matt Barkley to the roster due to his familiarity with the system from his time in Buffalo with Daboll. The Giants signed Jacob Eason to the practice squad on Tuesday.
Regardless of who is throwing passes for the Giants, the Cowboys (5-3) are planning on playing defense in their usual fashion — with plenty of bite.
“All these guys have the athleticism to get out and create on the move and (on) keepers that can get a player outside the pocket. That’s part of what Daniel and Tyrod’s strengths are, throwing on the run,” Dallas defensive coordinator Dan Quinn said. “And I wouldn’t be surprised, the more that I dig into it, that that would be DeVito’s strengths as well, a guy being able to create and get outside the pocket.”
In the Week 1 win, Dallas piled up three turnovers, 10 tackles for loss, eight pass breakups and 12 QB hits. The Dallas defense also scored twice, with Noah Igbinoghene and DaRon Bland finding the end zone. It was the largest score in a shutout win for the Cowboys in franchise history.
Dallas has been riled up all week after not finishing a game it felt like it could win at Philadelphia. The Eagles won 28-23 to take a commanding lead in the division. The Cowboys were still lamenting could-have and should-have scenarios when the week began.
Dak Prescott threw three touchdowns, but the Cowboys lost a fumble and racked up 10 penalties for 83 yards.
The Cowboys enter this game with the league’s third-best scoring offense and sixth-best scoring defense, putting up 27.5 points per game while allowing just 18.5.
Of some concern, Cowboys offensive tackle Tyron Smith – an eight-time Pro Bowler – didn’t practice Wednesday due to an illness.
Offensive tackle Evan Neal (ankle) and cornerback Adoree’ Jackson (concussion/neck) were among the Giants to miss practice.