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The View Back East: Giants Take First Place

By Joe Kleiber, Special To CBSDFW
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The Cowboys and Giants both faced a must-win game last week but only one team could come out on top. That team was the New York Giants. Eli Manning proved once again he is one of the most clutch quarterbacks in the league and The Cowboys continued to struggle in close games. The Philadelphia Eagles kept their slim playoff hopes alive by defeating the Miami Dolphins. The Washington Redskins took the Patriots to the limit but could not pull off the upset. Here is a recap of last week’s games and a preview of this week’s games.

Eagles 26 Dolphins 10

135510668 The View Back East: Giants Take First Place

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - DECEMBER 11: Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles evades Cameron Wake #91 and Chris Clemons #30 of the Miami Dolphins a game at Sun Life Stadium on December 11, 2011 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

The Eagles crushed the Dolphins in a must-win game and did it defensively. Their defense forced three turnovers and had nine sacks. Michael Vick made his return but didn’t need to do much as he threw for 208 yards with a touchdown and an interception. LeSean McCoy was held in check with only 71 total yards but also had two touchdowns. Defensive ends Trent Cole and Jason Babin each had three sacks. The Eagles have a tough road ahead in order to even sniff the playoffs but the most important thing for them is that they are still alive. Miami had such a bad game that head Coach Tony Sparano was fired after the game.

The Eagles face the New York Jets at home this week. Both teams face must-win games and the Jets just lost one of their defensive leaders, Jim Leonhard, for the season. Philadelphia is getting hot at the right time and the Jets have struggled on the road this season. Prediction: Eagles 14 Jets 13

Patriots 34 Redskins 27

135510959 The View Back East: Giants Take First Place

LANDOVER, MD - DECEMBER 11: Rex Grossman #8 of the Washington Redskins fumbles as he is hit by Andre Carter #93 of the New England Patriots at FedEx Field on December 11, 2011 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)

The Redskins gave the Patriots everything they had but it wasn’t enough. The Patriots pulled out a tight victory, but the Redskins at least showed some fight. Rex Grossman had one of his best games with 252 passing yards and one interception. What does that tell you about the Patriots defense? Roy Helu continued to show he’s the face of the franchise with 126 rushing yards. Washington goes on the road next to face the Giants at home. They have nothing to play for and the Giants have the division and playoff hopes to fight for. Prediction: Giants 34 Redskins 17

Giants 37 Cowboys 34

135524952 81 The View Back East: Giants Take First Place

Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants throws to an open receiver against the Dallas Cowboys at Cowboys Stadium on December 11, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

This was one of the most exciting and intense games of the season. The Giants were down 12 with five minutes to go, but they rallied back and pulled out the victory. Coach Tom Coughlin iced Dallas kicker Dan Bailey with seconds remaining and Bailey got blocked by Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul on the second try. Eli Manning continued his great season with 400 passing yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Brandon Jacobs had a monster game with 101 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Hakeem Nicks also had a huge game with eight catches for 168 yards. Victor Cruz also had a big game with six catches for 74 yards. Mario Manningham made his return and had a big impact with two catches for 62 yards and a touchdown.

Jason Pierre-Paul might’ve been the player of the game as he racked up six tackles with two sacks, a forced fumble, safety and a blocked kick. The rest of the Giants defense struggled as Tony Romo threw for 321 yards and four touchdowns. The Cowboys also lost their best running-back, DeMarco Murray, for the season and Felix Jones must step now and fill the hole.

Dallas once again blew a close game with the lead in the fourth quarter. Head Coach Jason Garrett will certainly be on the hot seat if Dallas fails to make the playoffs. This week should be another exciting week in the NFC East as the playoff picture shakes up. Tune in to next week’s article of the View Back East!

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