Justin Tuck: We need to get to 9-7

Justin Tuck | New York Giants

New York Giants defensive captain Justin Tuck thinks his squad will need to win out if it has any realistic chance of contending for a playoff spot.

The New York Giants blew a golden opportunity Sunday, losing at home to the rival Dallas Cowboys, 24-21. The trash-talking Giants put up a fight, as they fought back from a 21-6 deficit. However, Big Blue's defense couldn't hold up and was forced to eat its words. Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul declared there would be blood shed in Sunday's matchup and he was right. Problem is, most of it was Giants' blood. Pierre-Paul finished the game with one tackle.

Giants' defensive end Justin Tuck and the defense got on the field in the fourth quarter with 4:45 left, facing the mistake prone Cowboys' quarterback, Tony Romo. Romo not only drove Dallas down the field for the game winning field goal, but he didn't give the Giants the ball back.

"Romo is a good quarterback and he showed it again today," admitted Tuck. "For us, we just have to be a little bit more aggressive there, for the team to do what we did the previous three or four drives prior to that," Tuck explained when asked if he was waiting for Romo to make a mistake."

The Giants defense played a lot more aggressive, leading up to that final drive and for some reason let their foot up off the gas pedal.

"We were trying to play coverage a little there," offered Tuck of his unit's scheme on the final drive. "It was third down. They made some great throws. I don't think we did anything different. I just think they executed a little better than we did.

In recent years, very rarely have we seen a Giants squad out-executed by Dallas.

"I'm disappointed. I thought we played decent but not as well as we have been the past four weeks," said Tuck postgame. "We had an opportunity to win a football game. The effort was good, we just didn't execute as good as we have in previous weeks," Tuck said after the game." Tuck and the Giants probably didn't play as well as the past four weeks because they faced subpar quarterbacks, Josh Freeman of Minnesota, Philadelphia's Matt Barkley, Oakland's Terrelle Pryor and Green Bay's Scott Tolzien, and not Tony Romo.

Despite the disappointing lost, Tuck remains confident in his defense.

"As a defensive player, you never want to be in any other situation but that. You want the opportunity to close it out and get the ball back to your offense for them to go down and score," Tuck stated. "This time it didn't happen for us. That will never change my mentality about being out there."

The G-Men travel to Washington next week and still believe they have a shot at a playoff spot.

"We probably need to win now and get to 9-7," said Tuck. "Like I said, the reason that we had a meaningful game tonight is because we took it one game at a time."

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