Football is a game of momentum-swings and the Giants and Cowboys had plenty of those Monday night.
New York started out the game on a roll. Eli Manning and Plaxico Burress connected for a 50-yard touchdown on the fifth play from scrimmage. After trading punts, New York downed the ball on the Dallas 1 and LaVar Arrington broke into the Cowboy backfield to sack Drew Bledsoe for a safety.
New York added a field goal to take a 12-0 lead and had the ball on the Dallas 38 when Eli Manning threw an interception. Dallas took advantage and an 11-play drive ended with a Cowboy touchdown. The Cowboys had a chance to take the lead after Tiki Barber fumbled the ball on the Giants 14, but Bledsoe threw an interception to Sam Madison and New York held a shaky 12-7 lead at halftime.
Momentum went back to New York at the start of the third quarter when Antonio Pierce intercepted the first play of the game and gave the Giants the ball on the Dallas 14. Two plays later the Giants had a 19-7 lead on a pass from Eli Manning to Jeremy Shockey. New York appeared to have the game sewn up after Terrell Owens dropped a 4th-and - play from the Giants 30 and the Giants responded with a drive for a touchdown and 26-7 lead, but Dallas still had life.
Tony Romo, playing after Bledsoe was pulled, led the Cowboys in for a touchdown and the 2-point conversion brought the game to 26-15. Dallas was driving again when Romo threw a terrible pass that Fred Robbins intercepted. The Giants kicked a field goal to go up by 14 and New York sealed the win with an interception return for a touchdown by Kevin Dockery.
The 36-22 win puts New York in command of the NFC East. They have finished the toughest part of their schedule with a 4-2 record and now have two easier home games against Tampa and Houston before a huge confrontation with Chicago on November 12th.
Photograph of Plaxico Burress catching the 50 yard touchdown by L.M. Otero/AP