And just like that, we could have a race in the NFC East division.The New York Giants lost their second straight game, while Dallas pulled away from Philadelphia – pulling the Cowboys within 1 in the Loss column, with the Giants heading into their bye week.

Here is what we learned in Week 10 action among NFC East teams:       

The Cowboys areright in the thick of it

By virtue of their 38-23 pounding of Philadelphia, the Dallas Cowboys improve to 4-5, and move within 1.5 games of the division-leading Giants.  The 38 points was the most that Jason Garrett’s team had scored since …

Dallas used just about every possible way to score against the Eagles, including:     

  • A 78-yard punt return by Dwayne Harris
  • A 47-yard INT return for a TD by Brandon Carr
  • A fumble recovery in the end zone by Jason Hatcher to close out the scoring

Harris, Carr and Hatcher – not exactly the key players that you would expect in an important Cowboys victory.  Tony Romo did toss a pair of TDs, without throwing an INT, but on this day, it was his supporting cast that made the difference for Dallas.

All of a sudden, a pathway appears to be opening up for the Cowboys to pile up the wins.  Their next four games are against Cleveland (2-7), Washington (3-6), Philadelphia (3-6) and Cincinnati (4-5).

End of the Vick Era?

Michael Vick left the game after taking big hits on back-to-back plays, and did not return.  The big question this week is whether that will officially end the era of Vick as the Philadelphia starting QB.

Rookie Nick Foles looked mostly competent, throwing a 44-yard TD pass to Jeremy Maclin, and guiding the Eagles to a 17-10 lead in the third quarter.  Foles finished 22 of 32, for 219 yards, 1 TD and 1 INT.  Vick did throw a TD pass before leaving the game, giving him 11 TD passes and 9 INTs this season.

With Andy Reid’s coaching job in serious jeopardy, it’s unclear what tact he’ll take with his QB situation –although if Vick is not healthy for next week’s game at Washington, Reid may not have any choice.  Perhaps we’ll be able to see a matchup of Redskins rookie QB Robert Griffin III against Eagles rookie Foles.Philadelphia (3-6) lost their fifth straight game after starting the season a promising 3-1.

Here we go again

Perhaps the Giants (6-4) just like the drama of scraping and clawing to make the playoffs.  Perhaps they simply can’t live with success in the regular season and need to have their backs against the wall in order to play their best.  Whatever the case, it’s de ja vu all over again for Tom Coughlin’s squad.The Giants lost their second in a row to an AFC North team, getting blitzed by Cincinnati 31-13 in a game that wasn’t even that close.  It was New York’s worst loss since losing 49-24 to New Orleans in Week 12 last season (the third loss in a four-game skid before the Giants righted their ship).

It the first loss by New York this season by more than 7 points; the Giants had lost their three games this season by a total of 13 points before Sunday. The Giants dropped to 1-2 against AFC North teams, with a game still remaining against 7-2 Baltimore in Week 16.

Eli Manning failed to throw a TD pass for the third straight game.  His totals in the past three games are not for the faint of heart:

  • 54-for-99, 532 yards, 0 TDs, 4 INTs

Perhaps the Giants are just following the script they wrote a year ago by struggling in the middle of the season only to recover to make a playoff run. It’s a risky script to follow, but they’ve been down this road before.