New York Giants: Dallas Cowboys Leaving NFC East Wide Open for Big Blue

Yahoo Contributor Network

COMMENTARY | The New York Giants could be tied for the lead in the NFC East by the end of Week 12--just let that sink in for a moment. This is a Giants team that started the season 0-6 and watched as injuries piled up and Eli Manning completed more passes to opposing defenses than he did to his star wide receivers.

The G-Men don't have a pretty win yet this season, but at 3-6, the Giants will take all they can get, especially after the way the first six weeks went.

Perhaps the bigger story here is the fact that the NFC East is wide open, most notably after the Dallas Cowboys blew a 27-17 fourth quarter lead to the Detroit Lions in Week 8, as Detroit went on to win 31-30 in overtime.

It got worse for Dallas on Sunday night, as they were demolished by Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints, 49-17, giving them a 5-5 record, which puts them in a tie atop the division with the Philadelphia Eagles. Brees hurled four touchdown passes in the win, the Saints' offense totaled 625 yards and New Orleans' defense limited Big D to a mere 193 total yards of offense.

The NFC East? It's wide open.

NFC East Standings
1. Dallas Cowboys (5-5)
2. Philadelphia Eagles (5-5)
3. Washington Redskins (3-6)
4. New York Giants (3-6)

Dallas does hold the tiebreaker in the division, posting a perfect 3-0 record within the NFC East, but it's certainly kept the door open for the Giants to make a run at the division.

Consider that next week will see New York host an Aaron Rodgers-less Green Bay Packers team that will come into MetLife Stadium fresh off a 27-13 lashing from the Eagles. Green Bay will start third-string QB Scott Tolzien against Big Blue, who threw two picks and was sacked once against an Eagles' defense that ranks 31st in the league.

It gets better for the Giants.

The Cowboys have their Bye Week in Week 11 while the Giants take on the Packers. If New York can get past Green Bay and move to 4-6, they'll be just one game behind Dallas in the division, setting up a crucial Week 12 matchup with, guess who, the Cowboys.

Depending on the results of Philadelphia's Week 11 matchup with the Washington Redskins--Philly has a Bye in Week 12--a victory for the Giants in Week 12 would put them in a tie for first place with the Cowboys, with Dallas still holding the tiebreaker because of their divisional record.

That's certainly an impressive feat for a team that's dealt with a slew of injuries and rumblings for their two-time Super Bowl-winning coach to be fired. Of course, the Giants will need some help from all of their division counterparts to pull this off, but for now, they should just be concentrating on building the momentum of their three-game winning streak.

I'm not necessarily saying the Giants deserve to even be in a place to see first place in the division this year, but the Cowboys' inability to take hold of the division still has New York in prime position to do the unthinkable.

Pete Schauer is a native of the Jersey Shore where he covers the New York Giants, Brooklyn Nets and New York Yankees as a Yahoo Sports contributor. You can follow him on Twitter @Pete_Schauer and find him on Google+.

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