Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 12/30/11
Week 17 brings the Dallas Cowboys to New York to face the Giants for the final and most important regular season game of the year.  There are three things to watch for in this battle for the NFC East:


There is No Tomorrow.

This game will decide the winner of the NFC East.  Both teams have had chances to take control of the division over the season.  If Dallas hadn’t blown four 4th quarter leads earlier in the season, this game would be meaningless.  Likewise, the Giants lost a game against the 5-10 Redskins two weeks ago that would have made them champs.  Since neither team took control, it comes down to a play-in game to see who will make the playoffs, and who will hear for an entire off-season about blown chances and lack of heart.  The last time these two teams met, the final was 37-34 in a wild Sunday Night shoot-out in Dallas.  Fasten your seatbelts; this should be fun.


How’s the hand, Tony?

There has been a reporter assigned to Tony Romo’s hand since the moment he injured it in the first quarter on Sunday against the Eagles.  I’m being somewhat sarcastic, but this week, the reports from Dallas have gone like this: Monday – hand is sore: bandaged, but Tony plans to play.  Wednesday – Romo practiced without a bandage, Tony plans to play.  Thursday – Romo practiced for a limited time with a bandage: Tony plans to play.  Being from Dallas, I’m used to the media overkill, but we must also stop and remember that we are talking about a quarterback who broke his ribs earlier this season and didn’t miss a game.  Tony Romo will not miss this last regular season game that determines the NFC East champion due to a contusion on his hand.  His effectiveness will be the question especially if weather is a factor, but there is no doubt that Tony Romo will play on Sunday.


Are you Tough Enough?

Emmitt Smith, who had one of his most memorable games as a Dallas Cowboy in New York to end the season and determine the Cowboys’ playoff fortunes in 1993, came out and said he didn’t think the Cowboys were tough enough to win a game like the one they’re facing on Sunday.  Brandon Jacobs already dry-humped the star in the Cowboys’ end zone last time these two teams played.  Eli Manning signed the wall of the new stadium when he won the very first game there, and still has not lost a game in Jerry World.   Cowboys - it’s time to step up, or else get ready for one of the longest off-seasons ever.   


Enjoy Sunday night.  Cowboys vs. Giants: for all the marbles.  At least, for a week….
 
 
 
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