Big Blue United

A deeper look at the Giants' loss to the Cowboys: 10 observations

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Posted September 12, 2017 at 11:19 AM | Updated September 12, 2017 at 11:28 AM

By Dan Duggan | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

The Giants lost to the Cowboys, 19-3, on Sunday night. Many of the major storylines have been covered by now, but here’s a closer review of some of the overlooked aspects of the game.

Tipping their hand

Shane Vereen

How’s this for a tell: Shane Vereen led all Giants running backs by playing 31 snaps on Sunday night, but he didn’t have a single carry. Now, Vereen is the third-down back and 10 of his snaps came in two-minute drills at the end of the second and fourth quarters. But still, it makes it difficult when the defense can completely rule out a run play based on the personnel. Vereen was on the field for an end-around to receiver Sterling Shepard that gained six yards.

Of course, the Giants’ running backs only had 10 carries all game so there wasn’t much diversity in the play-calling, period. As far as another tell, blocking tight end Rhett Ellison was on the field for eight of those 10 carries. Ellison played 19 snaps, so it was essentially 50-50 run/pass when Ellison was on the field. But when Ellison was off the field, the Cowboys could almost guarantee a pass was coming.

Ron Jenkins | AP Photo

Ellison to the rescue?

Much was made of the impact Ellison would have as a blocker this offseason when the Giants elected to give him a four-year, $18 million contract rather than investing in the offensive line. The early returns weren’t promising. It’s certainly not all Ellison’s fault, but