With quarterback Eli Manning's prolific 2011 season culminating in a successful Giants Super Bowl run, it was easy to forget the team's struggles in the run game last season.
Wednesday was a bitter reminder.
After the Giants finished dead last in the NFL with 89.2 rushing yards per game last season, running backs Ahmad Bradshaw and David Wilson gained just 82 yards on the ground in their 24-17 loss to the Cowboys.
True, the pair only combined for 19 carries. But along with the offensive line, they didn't exactly give Tom Coughlin and offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride a reason to run more often.
Wilson, a rookie out of Virginia Tech, fumbled in his second career carry and Bradshaw was stuffed twice by the Dallas defense after linebacker Michael Boley's interception return set the Giants up with first-and-goal at the 1-yard line.
"When you are that close, you have to score," center David Baas told reporters.
At least Bradshaw got a chance to redeem himself - rushing for a 10-yard touchdown in the second quarter and a key 33-yard burst in the fourth. Wilson was relegated to kick-return duty for the rest of the game, a learning experience for the first-year player.
"I know I didn't have much room for error being a rookie and then having a critical error like that, like a turnover," Wilson told reporters after the game. "You just live and you learn and you move forward."