ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Barry Church remembers Dallas coach Jason Garrett talking turnovers on the first day of training camp.
The Cowboys' safety and his teammates showed they were listening in the season opener — and showed off their new defensive scheme, too.
Brandon Carr returned an interception 49 yards for the clinching touchdown, Church had another defensive score on a fumble, and the Cowboys beat Eli Manning and the New York Giants for the first time at their fancy $1.2 billion stadium with six takeaways in a 36-31 victory Sunday night.
"Coach Garrett showed us the first day of training camp what the percentages were," said Church, who scooped a loose ball and ran 27 yards to the end zone in the third quarter. "If we could get turnovers, our chances of winning were greater."
Dallas needed all six, though, because Manning threw for 450 yards and four touchdowns, including three to Victor Cruz. The Giants had the ball and were down just 30-24 in the final 2 minutes when Manning's pass went off the hand of running back De'Rel Scott into Carr's arms.
The cornerback beat Manning down the sideline with 1:50 left on the last of Manning's three interceptions.
Here are five things that helped dropped Manning to 4-1 for his career in Dallas owner Jerry Jones' showplace:
1. IT'S A SCHEME AND AN ATTITUDE: The Cowboys had only 16 turnovers all last year, switched to a four-man front with new defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin and swore all preseason that taking the ball away was the foremost thing on their minds. They proved it from the first snap of the season.
DeMarcus Ware intercepted Manning's first pass, and the Giants turned it over on their first three possessions. The Cowboys didn't take advantage of the early gifts, but built a big enough lead to hold off a New York comeback once the Giants finally stopped turning it over.