How many times have I sneeringly referred to the man on the right as “Colonel” Coughlin? Who amongst us hasn’t watched the erratic play of the QB on the left and proclaimed the Giants would be better off with Barbara Manning running the show?

For one day at least, it’s time to lay off Big Blue. Consider if you will that in Dallas’ two regular season games against the Giants, Tony Romo had thrown for almost a combined 600 yards while connecting on 8 TD passes. Sunday, however, R.W. Quarters’ interception of a Romo 4th down pass in the end zone was the day’s only turnover, it was also the game’s decisive play.

It’s hard to make too much of the suddenly mistake-free Eli, and equally astonishing to consider the Giants pulled this off on a day a) Brandon Jacobs only ran for 54 yards and b) Plaxico Fantastico was a non-factor. Not only does Michael Strahan still have something left in the tank, but it’s almost impossible to imagine this is the same New York D that allowed 80 points the first two weeks of the season.

The Giants will hit Lambeau as underdogs, albeit underdogs with a 9 game road winning streak. Even if they come up short next week, the rehab job done to Manning and Coughlin’s reputations is pretty thorough. The former has now collected a pair of playoff wins on the road, the most recent of which against what looked to be the class of the NFC (pre-Mexican vacation, anyway). Enjoy it, Carl, but we expect a full recap early Monday morning.

Yoko Romo laff-riot aside, the fourth quarter intentional grounding penalty loomed large but the Cowboys’ QB can’t be blamed for a bunch of passes Patrick Creighton and T.O. should’ve caught. Whether or not Wade Phillips is a goner will certainly be discussed at length tomorrow (not here, however), and without wishing any professional ill-will to persons not named Gregg Henson, Phillips’ side was charged with the dopey penalties, not Coughlin’s.