The New York Giants franchise is one of the most storied and regal entities in league history. But that doesn’t mean they’re not above reacting to the occasional barbs from rival teams.
This was the case as Big Blue started preparation for their bitter NFC East rival, the Cowboys. Wednesday officially begins the week for teams, but the Giants had the Cowboys (3-3) circled on their calendar since losing the season opener in prime time. It doesn’t matter that since that game, the Giants (5-2) have seemingly found their groove, while the Cowboys have alternated wins and losses each week, because there’s something about Dallas that rubs the men in blue the wrong way.
Perhaps it’s because of the Cowboys’ highly-visible and mouthy owner, Jerry Jones, who professed during a pre-training camp rally that “Y’all should come to that stadium and watch us beat the Giants’ asses,” the next time New York trekked to Cowboys Stadium.
“We take pride in the billboard postings and different things, which motivates our team,” running back Ahmad Bradshaw said, adding he’s looking forward to entering Cowboys Stadium. “We just use it all for motivation for our team. … Definitely, no question. We have fun in Dallas stadium.”
The Cowboys have been a very generous host to the Giants recently, as they’ve yet to beat them in Cowboys Stadium since the monstrosity was erected in 2009. Since the Giants knocked off the Cowboys in the old Texas Stadium in the franchises’ only playoff matchup — a 21-17 Giants’ win in January 2008, en route to the Giants’ Super Bowl coronation — Dallas has been losers in six of the nine meetings, including two of the last three.
Linebacker Michael Boley rarely gets in verbal exchanges with anyone, but couldn’t help himself when reminded of Jones’s proclamation, noting the success the Giants have had in recent memory.
“Be careful what you wish for,” Boley said, grinning.
The Cowboys would be wise not to rile up the linebacker, because it was Boley who knocked out quarterback Tony Romo during the Giants’ 41-35 shootout win in October 2010, effectively ending the Cowboys’ season when they lost Romo for the year with a broken collarbone in the second quarter.
Most of the Giants’ veterans chose to take the high road, such as defensive end Justin Tuck, who echoed head coach Tom Coughlin’s mantra of “talk is cheap, play the game.”
Right guard Chris Snee was just as staid in his response, as he threw compliments the Cowboys’ way.
“They should have all the confidence in the world [because] they shut us down in that game and their defense is stacked,” Snee said. “It’s not going to be easy, but we’re going down there with the mindset to start fast and play well.”
As uncontroversial as Tuck and Snee tried to be, there are still some, like Antrel Rolle, who had no problem saying he appreciated Jones for lighting a fire.
“They’re going to be aiming high, but we’re going to be aiming right back at them,” Rolle said.
“They were definitely the better team that night, and now we’ll show them who’s the better team come this Sunday,” Rolle said. “We’re going out there ready to be some head-busters.”
Big Blue notes
»The Giants’ preliminary injury list isn’t its usually extensive self, which is obviously a good thing. The injury report only includes center David Baas (ankle), defensive tackle Rocky Bernard (quadriceps), running back Ahmad Bradshaw (foot), wideout Hakeem Nicks (knee/foot), safety Kenny Phillips (knee) and linebacker Jacquian Williams (knee).
Follow Giants beat writer Tony Williams on Twitter @TBone8.