Veteran defensive end Jeremy Mincey made a self-admitted “bone-headed decision” late in the fourth quarter with the Cowboys trailing by a field goal.
The defense, which had played well all night, needed to make a stop and give the offense a chance. That plan was derailed somewhat, though, when Mincey got a personal-foul penalty for knocking Giants rookie left tackle Ereck Flowers’ helmet off after a second-and-3 play from Dallas’ 33.
Mincey, who is entering his eight professional seasons, knows better than that.
“I made a bone-headed decision. I let my emotions get the best of me,” Mincey said. “It was really like a reflex, more than anything.”
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That penalty, after a 2-yard run by the Giants, gave them a first down at the Dallas 16 with 2:17 left. Six plays later, New York extended its lead to 26-20, leaving Dallas only 1:34 left.
Linebacker Sean Lee certainly didn’t approve of the penalty by Mincey.
“We can’t have penalties like that,” Lee said. “In games like that, in critical situations, we have to keep our cool. He knows that and I’m sure he’ll fix that.”