January 11, 2019 at 2:40 am #2323
After joining the New York Giants as a late-season addition Dak Prescott Jersey , veteran offensive lineman John Greco came to training camp as somewhat of a bubble guy on the roster.Both a guard and center, the 33-year-old seemed to be the odd guy out at both spots.Jon Halapio and Brett Jones were the top centers, and rookie Will Hernandez and free-agent signee Patrick Omaneh were the top two guards. Greco and long-time starter John Jerry were fighting for a roster spot.Funny thing happened. New York traded Jones to Minnesota in training camp and Greco beat out Jerry because of his ability to play center and guard.Two-plus weeks into the season, Greco is now a starter. The 11-year veteran is getting an unexpected chance because Halapio broke his right leg and ankle in the third quarter of the 20-13 loss to the Cowboys.”Any time you lose your partner in crime, one of your buddies in your room, you feel for him,” Greco said Wednesday as the Giants (0-2) practiced for Sunday’s game in Houston against the Texans (0-2).”We know that he’s going to come back stronger than ever, but at the same time we just have to do everything we can this week to try to get a win. It’s going to be a tough road game, awesome atmosphere down in Houston, so we are excited about the challenge and opportunity.”Greco is on his third tour with coach Pat Shurmur. The two also worked for the Rams, and Greco also was in Cleveland when Shurmur coached the Browns.Greco joins an offensive line that has struggled. New York is ranked in the bottom five on offense in yards per game, total yards passing, total yards running, first downs, points and passing average. The line has allowed eight sacks, including six by the Cowboys on Sunday night.”We just have to focus everything on in-house,” Greco said. “We don’t really listen to the talk outside, we know we have to play better and that’s the focus every week. When we get some wins it’s going to be the same thing. There’s going to be no let-up, and that’s how you’ve got to approach it.”You can’t be complacent and when you know things aren’t going your way you just have to do everything extra Authentic Travis Frederick Jersey , and do everything in your power to be the cause of the wins and not the cause of losses.”Quarterback Eli Manning spoke with Greco this week and does not expect a problem making the transition.”He’s been here all training camp,” Manning said. “We’ve worked together, we’ve gotten snaps throughout training camp and everything so that shouldn’t be a problem. He knows what’s going on. We’ve met this week, we’ve talked a bunch on some calls, making sure we’re saying the same thing and hearing things the same way.”The bigger problem will be getting the offense in gear. Manning did not have enough time to throw and there were not many holes for rookie running back Saquon Barkley against Dallas.”I think we’re close on things,” Manning said. “You’re going against good players and they’re going to make plays sometimes and that’s fine, but when there are opportunities and when things should be picked up or guys should be going certain ways, you got to do those things and give yourself an opportunity to make those plays when they can be there.”Greco is looking forward to helping the offense. A year ago, he was sitting home waiting for someone to sign him.”I knew I still had enough gas in the tank that I could’ve been playing and I was just happy I got the opportunity here last year and then again this offseason, and here we are,” he said. “So, that really hasn’t entered my mind. It’s more of a laugh thing I can do at myself but yeah, I’m excited about the opportunity.”NOTES: LB Olivier Vernon (ankle), CB Eli Apple (hamstring) and LB Connor Barwin (knee) did not practice. Vernon has not played in a game this season. Apple was hurt Sunday. Barwin has been bothered by a nagging injury in recent weeks although he has not missed games. … Starting tight end Evan Engram (ankle) and punter returner Kaelin Clay (ankle) were limited. … New York signed FB Elijhaa Penny off Arizona’s practice squad. Halapio, who had surgery Monday, was placed on injured reserve to make room for him. Ezekiel Elliott still had five more games to watch last year after the Dallas Cowboys lost in Atlanta at the beginning of their star running back’s six-game suspension over domestic violence allegations.After playing a huge role in helping the Cowboys thrust themselves into the NFC East race with a win at the Falcons, Elliott will be right in the middle of trying to get them back to the playoffs instead of having to watch a season go south without the 2016 NFL rushing champ.”We can’t lose this grit. We can’t lose the way we’re going out there and working every day. We can’t lose the way we’re going out there and competing on Sundays,” Elliott said after a 22-19 win over the Falcons . “We’ve got to build on that.”It’s quite a two-game streak to build on for Dallas (5-5): road victories over the past two Super Bowl participants from the NFC, before which the Cowboys were winless away from home and teetering on playoff extinction just halfway through the season.And it set up a Thanksgiving showdown against Washington (6-4) on Thursday with the division lead on the line.”That’s all that much more reason to appreciate how this team’s come together and be where we are right now Youth La’el Collins Jersey ,” owner and general manager Jerry Jones said. “We (Cowboys and Redskins) don’t always play for a title, but to some degree, we’re playing for it out there Thanksgiving day.”Both victories featured winning drives to answer tying fourth-quarter touchdowns 鈥?first against defending champion Philadelphia . The Cowboys actually answered two tying TDs in the final quarter against the Eagles.Elliott had two of his five 100-yard rushing games and combined for 388 yards from scrimmage and three touchdowns in wins over the Eagles and Falcons.Instead of wondering what they’ll do without that kind of production, the Cowboys are feeding off growing confidence in an offensive line that is finally absorbing changes and the residual benefits of new No. 1 receiver Amari Cooper, acquired in a trade when Dallas was 3-4 going into its open week.”We’ve talked about that for a couple weeks now,” quarterback Dak Prescott said. “The way teams are playing us and the way they’re playing Amari and adjusting their coverages has given us favorable boxes. The offensive line is doing a great job of taking advantage of that. Zeke’s finding holes and making people miss.”Prescott was sacked a career-high eight times in his first game without Elliott last year against the Falcons, the start of a three-game losing streak.Although the Cowboys won the final three without their running back, the margin for error was gone. A loss to Seattle in Elliott’s return eliminated Dallas a year after Prescott and Elliott led the team to an NFC-best 13 wins.The reward for the current two-game surge is three straight home games, although one-loss New Orleans is the middle opponent. After an extended break following the Saints game, the Eagles visit. Philadelphia’s hopes of a repeat are fading coming off a blowout loss at New Orleans.”We played our way back into this thing, but this one is every bit as big as the last two,” executive vice president of personnel Stephen Jones said on his radio show Monday. “So, we got to pull this off and it’s great we put ourselves back into a position to be relevant here.”The formula from the two road wins seems to be the best hope for the Cowboys. The defense keeps them in games, as it has done several times this season, while the offense makes the winning plays late.One of the fourth-quarter TDs against Atlanta was set up by rookie linebacker Leighton Vander Esch’s second interception in as many games.”We’re gelling at the right time,” Prescott said. “We’re complementing the defense. They get turnovers. We’re turning them into points and when you do that, you give yourself a chance. We know we’re going to be in every game.” Custom Philadelphia Eagles Jerseys
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