The New York Giants got the defence of their Super Bowl title off to a bad start in the National Football League opener on Wednesday, making some costly early mistakes that helped the Dallas Cowboys to a 24-17 victory.
Rookie running back David Wilson, a first-round draft pick out of Virginia Tech, fumbled on the Dallas 29-yard line in the opening quarter to squander a scoring opportunity, and in the second the Giants let another touchdown chance go to waste.
An interception by Giants linebacker Michael Boley and penalty against Dallas gave New York a first down on the Cowboys' one-yard line, but two running plays and an incompletion later the Giants had to settle for a field goal.
Just before halftime, the Cowboys started to find their range on offense and after a 73-yard drive resulted in a touchdown, the Giants were playing catch-up the rest of the way.
"Very disappointing, very disappointing loss," New York coach Tom Coughlin said. "Any way you want to look at it. We fumble the ball after a nice drive that possibly could have been points. We don't score from the one-yard line."
Coughlin continued with the list of Giants' failures.
"We give up big plays in the second half. We don't really stop the run, they had all kinds of yardage, we had little or none.
"We had trouble stopping the slant (pass route) all night long like we've never seen a slant before."
Coughlin was particularly disappointed that the Giants had delivered such a flat performance in a showcase home game earned by their Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots last season.
"Very, very frustrating," Coughlin said. "It hurts to come in and be playing at home and playing a game of this nature opening the season to play the way we played.
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