Brian Daboll seethes after Dallas Cowboys roll Giants in Thanksgiving Day ‘Odell Bowl’ – The Mercury News



ARLINGTON — Giants coach Brian Daboll was furious after the Dallas Cowboys steamrolled the Giants on Thanksgiving Day in the Odell Bowl, 28-20, at a raucous AT&T Stadium.

“Yeah, I think we missed some opportunities,” Daboll said angrily and tersely. “We have to do a better job. It starts with me.”

The reality was on Daboll’s face and in every word he and his players spoke in a quiet hallway: this second loss to their hated NFC East rivals hit the hardest of their four defeats so far.

“Yeah. I think it’s a tough loss,” quarterback Daniel Jones said. “It’s a divisional game and a game where we didn’t play our best. It’s always disappointing. You have to give credit to Dallas. They’re a good team. But we didn’t do what we needed to do to win the game. This it was the difference, and it’s frustrating for all of us.

The Cowboys (8-3) humiliated the Giants (7-4), who have lost three of their last four. And Dallas took a step closer to winning the Odell Beckham Jr. free agent sweepstakes.

But the Giants’ primary source of concern is that Saquon Barkley, the engine of their early season, is stalling.

Barkley dropped a 4th-and-1 pass from Jones with 4:07 left in the third quarter at the Giants’ 44-yard line, capping Dallas’ strong second-half start in an avalanche.

And Barkley was bottled up for 39 yards rushing on 12 carries. That gives him a total of 61 rushing yards on 26 carries in the Giants’ last two games for an average of 2.34 yards per carry.

Barkley was responsible and frustrated with himself. He took responsibility for the fourth fall.

“I have to make that play,” he said. “Here. I just have to play the game. [Daboll] he trusted us to go on 4th and 1 and make the play, and I didn’t make the play for us. I have to be better.”

Barkley also said that improving the running game starts with him.

“I have to do a better job,” he said. “When the running game doesn’t work, it starts with the running back. So I have to be better there as well. I see myself as a dynamic player. And that’s the type of player I want to be and I have to be for this team” .

Jones claimed he was at fault for putting that pass low and behind Barkley.

“Just a bad throw,” the quarterback said. “I have to drop in front of him. Bad shot. He can’t miss that one.”

But Daboll still only had 10 offensive players on the field for that pivotal game. Coaching is also to blame.

“It can’t happen,” Daboll said.

Daboll’s decision to use top corner Adoree Jackson as a punter returned last week against Detroit certainly failed as well.

Rodarius Williams and Julian Love intercepted Dak Prescott in the first half Thursday. But the shorthanded secondary had no answer for Cowboys receiver CeeDee Lamb and three touchdowns by Dallas tight ends, including two by Dalton Schultz.

“Unacceptable,” Leonard Williams said of the defense’s performance against the run, on third downs and in the red zone.

It doesn’t help morale that the Cowboys completely own the Giants right now, either.

The ‘Boys have won 11 of their last 12 meetings with the Giants and 16 of their last 21 dating back to October 2012. Prescott has a 10-2 record against the Giants in 12 career meetings, including 10 straight wins.

“I was very aware that I had those two losses my freshman year,” Prescott said. “I’ve kept this at the forefront of my mind ever since.”

Cowboys defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence even trash-talked the Giants before the pivotal 4th-and-1 in the third quarter like a school bully who knew he had the upper hand .

Lawrence had her hands saying “bring her”. And the Giants failed to deliver.

Now they have no choice but to spend the next three weeks against Washington, the Eagles and the Commanders again, in a season-defining NFC East series.

Jones remained optimistic that the Giants still control their own destiny and said health will be key during this nine-day break.

“We put ourselves in a really good position,” he said. “He must heal and take advantage of this long week. But we are still confident. We are 7-4 and we have a lot to do.”

Still, if Barkley doesn’t go, the Giants know they’ll have a hard time overcoming anything.

“Every time you lose, you lose,” Barkley said. “You have that bad feeling in the pit of your stomach, especially when you know that there are many things that you can go back and if you change it, you can change the result of the game. But hats off to them.

“They were the better team today.”

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