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Inside The Numbers: Manning Reaches Career Milestone

Posted Sep 13, 2017

  Giants.com's Michael Eisen takes a statistical look at the Giants season opener against the Dallas Cowboys:

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Leftover notes and statistics from the Giants’ season-opening 19-3 defeat in Dallas:

*The Giants had won their previous 12 games dating back to 2014 in which they held their opponents to fewer than 20 points. They were 8-0 in such games in 2016, including two victories vs. the Cowboys. The Giants had last lost a game when the opposing team’s point total was in the teens or lower on Nov. 16, 2014, when they were defeated at home, 16-10, by the San Francisco 49ers. They won two subsequent games in 2014, two in 2015, and all eight last season when their opponents had fewer than 20 points.

*The Giants started three rookies in Dallas: tight ends Evan Engram and Shane Smith, and defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that was their highest number of rookie starters in a season opener since Aug. 31, 1997, when wide receiver Ike Hilliard, running back Tiki Barber, safety Sam Garnes and center Derek Engler all started in a 31-17 victory against Philadelphia in Jim Fassel’s first game as head coach.
*As noted, two of the rookie starters were tight ends. It was the first time the Giants started two rookies from the same position group in a season opener since Sept. 7, 1980, when defensive backs Mark Haynes and Bud Hebert were in the lineup in a 41-35 victory against the Cardinals in St. Louis.


*Smith was the first rookie free agent to start a season opener for the Giants since another tight end, Michael Matthews, in 2007. Last season, three undrafted rookies started games for the Giants: safety Andrew Adams, wide receiver Roger Lewis, Jr. and defensive end Romeo Okwara. It was the first non-strike season in which the Giants started at least three rookie free agents since 1980 (7).

>>WATCH GIANTS POSTGAME REACTIONS

*The Giants are one of eight teams that have started at least one rookie in each of the last five season-opening games, joining the Falcons, Bills, Panthers, Jaguars, Chiefs, Rams and Jets. The Dolphins and Bucs will join the list if they start rookies in their opening games this week.

*Eli Manning started his 200th consecutive regular-season game against the Cowboys, the third-longest streak by a quarterback in NFL history (Brett Favre, 297; Peyton Manning 208). It is also the longest active streak in the NFL, regardless of position:

Player Position Team Starts
Eli Manning Quarterback Giants 200
Phillip Rivers Quarterback San Diego 177
Jason Witten Tight End Dallas 164
Joe Thomas Tackle Cleavelad 161
Donald Penn Tackle Oakland 157

*Safety Landon Collins has the Giants’ second-longest starting streak…at 33 games. Tackle Ereck Flowers is third at 30.

*Manning has the third-longest active games-played streak in the NFL:

Player Position Team Games
Shane Lechler Punter Houston 239
Jason Witten Tight End Dallas 220
Eli Manning Quarterback Giants 200
Donnie Jones Punter Philadelphia 193
John Denney Long Snapper Miami 192

*The Giants will host the Detroit Lions Monday night in the season’s first home game. They are 50-39-3 in home openers, and are one of four teams with 50 victories in such games, joining Chicago (65), Green Bay (53) and Detroit (52).

*When Brandon Marshall caught a 10-yard pass on the game’s final play in Dallas, it extended his streak with at least one reception to 160 games in which he’s played. That is the second-longest active streak behind Arizona’s Larry Fitzgerald, who has caught a pass in 196 straight games.

*Tight end Jason Witten led the Cowboys with seven receptions for 59 yards and scored the game’s only touchdown on a 12-yard pass from Dak Prescott. In 29 regular-season games against the Giants, Witten has 153 catches for 1,548 yards and 14 touchdowns. The receptions and yardage totals are the highest by any Giants opponent in history. The 14 touchdown catches place him second behind another Dallas legend, Pro Football Hall of Fame receiver Bob Hayes, who had 19.

>>POSTGAME NOTES AND STATS

*The Giants did not have a takeaway in Dallas, the first game in which that happened since a victory against Baltimore last Oct. 16. In 2016, the Giants were 3-1 in games in which their opponents did not have a turnover. In addition, Green Bay did not commit a turnover in its victory against the Giants in the NFC Wild Card Game.

*The Giants and Cowboys concluded their game in a tidy 2:48 Sunday night, the fastest Giants game since Nov. 17, 2013, when they defeated Green Bay at home in 2:45.

*In Ben McAdoo’s 18 games as head coach (including one playoff contest), an opposing back has rushed for more than 100 yards three times. Dallas’ Ezekiel Elliott has two of those games, 107 yards in a Giants’ victory last Dec. 11 and 104 yards Sunday night. Pittsburgh’s Le’Veon Bell ran for 118 yards on Dec. 4, 2016.

*The Giants’ field goal drive in Dallas consumed 9:44. Since 2010, they have had seven offensive possessions that took more than 9½ minutes to complete. The Giants scored touchdowns on just two of those drives. Two others ended in field goals, two with turnovers, and a 13-minute series at the end of the game in Seattle on Nov. 7, 2010 with three Sage Rosenfels kneel-downs in a 41-7 victory.