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Giants 29, Cowboys 24

The SportsXchange

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The New York Giants watched a huge lead disappear, then ultimately held on by their fingertips to beat the Dallas Cowboys 29-24 Sunday.

The Giants avenged an opening-night loss at MetLife Stadium to Dallas and improved their NFC East-leading record to 6-2. Dallas, which fell to 3-4, has yet to beat New York in four meetings at Cowboys Stadium.

The defending Super Bowl champions intercepted Dallas quarterback Tony Romo four times, including safety Stevie Brown's pick to thwart a potential game-winning drive in the final two minutes. Dallas turned the ball over six times total.

Even so, the Cowboys nearly pulled out a win, as Romo and Dez Bryant almost connected on a 37-yard touchdown in the waning seconds. Bryant caught a heave at the back of the end zone, and it was initially ruled a touchdown.

Replays, however, showed that Bryant's hand came down out of bounds on his fall, and the pass was ruled incomplete.

Giants kicker Lawrence Tynes had five field goals, two coming in the fourth quarter after Dallas had taken a 24-23 lead.

New York quarterback Eli Manning wasn't at his best, throwing for 192 yards and an interception and no touchdown passes, but the Giants did enough to escape with a victory.

Romo heard boos in the first half when the Cowboys faced a 23-0 deficit, but he and his teammates received deafening cheers in the third quarter. The Cowboys reeled off 24 consecutive points to take the lead.

Romo picked apart New York's secondary to start the second half, moving the Cowboys down the field with ease. The Giants appeared to stuff the drive at the 1-yard line, as three attempts didn't yield a thing. On fourth down, Romo faked a handoff and reversed field to score with ease. As he spiked the ball, the crowd of 94,067 erupted. The score cut New York's lead to 23-17.

Dallas' defense forced another punt, and Romo got back to work. He completed six passes on a 59-yard drive, three going to tight end Jason Witten. At the 1 again, Romo again rolled out into space, but this time dumped a short toss to backup tight end John Philips to the Cowboys' first lead of the game, 24-23.

Turnovers have been a problem for Romo all season, and Sunday was no different. He coughed the ball up three times in the first half, leading to 17 points for the Giants.

Romo's deep throw over the middle to Bryant on Dallas' first drive was picked off by Brown. A 37-yard return from Brown led to Tynes' second field goal of the first quarter, a 37-yarder for a 6-0 New York lead.

Romo gave it right back minutes later. Romo threw downfield again -- this time to Miles Austin -- and cornerback Corey Webster came up with an interception and took it back 38 yards. The Giants found the end zone that time, going 31 yards in four plays, capped by Andre Brown's 1-yard scamper around the left side.

Dallas wasn't done losing the ball in the first quarter. Bryant fumbled away a punt late in the opening period, resulting in a third field goal from Tynes early in the second quarter.

Romo's worst mistake of the first half came less than two minutes into the second quarter. On third down, Romo attempted a short screen to Felix Jones. The toss came up far too short, and defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul stretched out his 6-foot-5 frame to snag the free ball and rumble 28 yards for a touchdown.

Pierre-Paul, for good measure, dunked the football over the goal-post crossbar. The Cowboys' comeback chances seemed to be flushed right along with it at the time.

Down 23-0, Dallas did get two scores before halftime. Felix Jones scored on a 4-yard run at the end of a 72-yard drive, and Dan Bailey nailed a 51-yard field in the final minute of the first half.

The Giants got on the scoreboard first, taking the opening kickoff 57 yards before settling for a 41-yard kick from Tynes. Manning and Rueben Randle hooked up on 56 of those yards on third down to get New York into Dallas territory.

NOTES: Dallas was playing its first game without linebacker Sean Lee, the team's leading tackler who's out for the season with injured toe. The Cowboys' other inactive players were safety Charlie Peprah, safety Matt Johnson, linebacker Kyle Wilber, center Phil Costa and defensive end Sean Lissemore. ... The Giants inactives' were safety Kenny Phillips, defensive tackle Rocky Bernard, linebacker Jacquian Williams, defensive end Adewale Ojomo, wide receiver Jerrel Jernigan, tackle James Brewer and tight end Adrien Robinson.
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