The National Football League (NFL) is a hotbed of intense rivalries, and the New York Giants are at the center of many of them. With a history dating back to 1925, the Giants have had their fair share of fierce competitors. This article delves into the most significant rivalries of the New York Giants, focusing on their battles with the Dallas Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Birth of Rivalries
The Giants’ rivalries were born from the team’s long-standing participation in the NFL. The Giants’ biggest rivals include the Washington Commanders (formerly known as the Redskins), Dallas Cowboys, and Philadelphia Eagles, all of whom play in the NFC East division. These rivalries have been fueled by numerous battles for the NFC East crown, making each encounter a high-stakes game that significantly impacts the New York Giants odds of securing a playoff spot.
The Giants vs. The Cowboys: A Historic Showdown
The rivalry between the Giants and the Cowboys began in 1960, with their first game ending in a 31-31 tie played at Yankees Stadium. Since then, the two teams have faced off 121 times, with the Cowboys currently leading the series 73-47-2. However, the Giants hold a 1-0 advantage in the playoffs, the win coming in the 2007 Divisional Round when the Giants upset the No. 1 seed Cowboys. Two games later, Eli Manning and company stunned the undefeated New England Patriots in the Super Bowl.
Shared Coaches and Shared Tensions
Adding to the tension between the Giants and the Cowboys is the fact that they have shared three coaches over the years. The most recent one is Jason Garrett, who served as the Cowboys’ head coach from 2011-2019 before becoming the Giants’ offensive coordinator for almost two seasons. This shared history has only elevated the rivalry, with each game serving as a battle for bragging rights and divisional dominance.
The Giants vs. The Eagles: A Bitter Battle
The Giants’ rivalry with the Philadelphia Eagles is another significant one, beginning in 1933. The Eagles currently hold a slight advantage, with 92 wins to the Giants’ 87. This rivalry has been marked by several memorable games, including the Eagles’ dramatic comeback victory in December 2010, which saw them rally from a 21-point deficit to win.
Geographic Proximity Fuels the Fire
The geographic proximity of the Giants and the Eagles has further fueled their rivalry. Both teams are located in the Northeast, separated by just 95 miles, and their fans often find themselves in close quarters; this adds an extra layer of intensity to each matchup. This rivalry is so passionate that it has been ranked by NFL Network as the number one rivalry of all time and is considered one of the fiercest according to the ESPN football community.
Other Rivalries: The Giants vs. The 49ers
Outside of the NFC East, the Giants’ classic rivalry with the San Francisco 49ers has given rise to some of the most iconic moments in NFL history. This rivalry dates back to 1952 and is widely regarded as one of the NFL’s best inter-conference matchups. As of 2023, the overall series is deadlocked at 21 wins apiece, with the playoff series standing at 4-4.
As a result of the NFL’s yearly scheduling realignment, the Giants and the 49ers do not face each other every season. Rather, they play each other once every three years or the following season if the two teams finish in the same place in their respective divisions.
The most memorable meeting came in the 1990 NFC Championship, a year both teams finished the regular season 13-3 and where both rosters were littered with Hall of Famers. The 49ers, favored to win their third straight Super Bowl, led Bill Parcells’ Giants for most of the game. But Joe Montana was knocked out in the second half, and the Giants clawed their way back with field goals. With no time left, Matt Bahr kicked his fifth field goal, a 42-yard game-winner, to stun the 49ers 15-13 and advance to Super Bowl XXV, which they won.
The Impact of Rivalries on the New York Giants Odds
These rivalries significantly impact the New York Giants’ odds of success each season. Each game against the Cowboys or the Eagles is not just a regular game; it’s a high-stakes fight that can drastically alter the course of the Giants’ season. The same goes for their battles against the Commanders. As such, the Giants must always bring their A-game when facing these formidable foes, turning each encounter into a thrilling spectacle for fans and players alike.
The New York Giants’ rivalries with the Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles, and San Francisco 49ers are among the most intense in the NFL. These rivalries, steeped in history and heightened by geographic proximity, significantly shape the NFC and greatly influence the Giants’ odds of success each season.