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Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants: 5 bold predictions for Week 1

The Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants will meet for the 123rd time in the season opener from MetLife Stadium on Sunday Night Football. The Cowboys have a 73-47-2 edge in the rivalry.

Dallas has dominated New York over the past several years having won 11 out of the last 12 games. In fact, New York hasn’t beaten a Cowboys team led by Dak Prescott since his rookie season in 2016.

All divisional games are important, but there seems to be a heightened emphasis for the Giants to turn the rivalry in their favor after all the additions they made in the offseason.

With both teams poised to make another playoff run this season, here’s a look at our five bold predictions for Sunday’s game.

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Darren Waller will score two touchdowns for the New York Giants

NFL: New York Giants Training Camp
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Everyone has raved about how Darren Waller has performed in training camp and in the preseason. He’s established himself as Daniel Jones’ No. 1 option and offensive coordinator Mike Kafka has had Waller line up all across the field.

With the Cowboys possessing one of the best cornerback duos in the league in Trevon Diggs and Stephon Gilmore, New York will rely heavily on its versatile tight end. Not only will Waller have double-digit targets on Sunday, but he’ll score two touchdowns in his Giants debut.

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CeeDee Lamb, Brandin Cooks will each have over 100 yards receiving

NFL: Dallas Cowboys Training Camp
Jason Parkhurst-USA TODAY Sports

It’s expected that when New York’s defense is in its nickel package, the team will have two rookie corners on the field in Deonte Banks and Tre Hawkins III. The team has high hopes for their young corners, but they have a tough first assignment in having to deal with the Cowboys talented trio of receivers in CeeDee Lamb, Brandin Cooks, and Michael Gallup.

Lamb is one of the best receivers in the NFL having been named Second-Team All-Pro last season, and Cooks has six 1,000-yard receiving seasons on his resume. Lamb and Cooks will have their way against New York’s secondary and both will have over 100 yards receiving.

New York Giants defense will have a pick-six against Dak Prescott

NFL: New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Despite losing their Week 12 matchup to the Cowboys 28-20 on Thanksgiving, the Giants’ defense was able to intercept Prescott twice. They were able to accomplish this feat without their best corner Adoree’ Jackson and safety Xavier McKinney who were out with injuries.

Both Jackson and McKinney will be on the field on Sunday. Recently New York added Isaiah Simmons which will allow defensive coordinator Don “Wink” Martindale to be even more creative with his scheme.

Prescott has become turnover prone, having thrown 25 interceptions in his last 28 regular season games. He’ll have success throwing against the Giants young corners, but the defense will also force him into a mistake that will turn into a momentum-changing pick-six.

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Dallas Cowboys’ Micah Parsons will sack Daniel Jones three times

NFL: New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

In their two wins over New York last season, the Cowboys defense was able to sack Daniel Jones eight times. Two of these sacks were by Micah Parsons who some feel could be the Defensive Player of the Year this season.

The Giants feel their offensive line is better this season with rookie center John Michael Schmitz Jr. But with the exception of Pro-Bowl left tackle Andre Thomas, the line is still a work in progress.

Dallas will line up Parsons all across the defensive front to try to create matchup problems for New York. As a result, the 24-year-old defensive star will register three sacks on Sunday night.

Saquon Barkley will rush for over 100 yards

NFL: New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

In his last five games against the Cowboys, Saquon Barkley has averaged just 41.4 yards per game rushing. He hasn’t rushed for over 100 yards against Dallas since 2019.

If there’s a weakness in the Cowboys’ defense, it’s their run defense as last season they gave up an average of 129.3 yards per game on the ground which was 22nd in the league. Barkley is fully rested having not played in the preseason and he will have a big opening night as he will rush for over 100 yards, which will be the first step towards the star running back reaching his incentives to receive his bonus.

Final prediction: This will be a close game throughout, but Big Blue will prevail in the end as Graham Gano will kick a game-winning field goal in the final seconds.

New York Giants 27, Dallas Cowboys 24

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