The football world was shocked last Sunday when the Dallas Cowboys offense erupted for 35 points and doing it in a brand-new more modern style in a win against the New York Giants.
The media and the fans are proclaiming them contenders after one week, but all that did was put a major target on their backs. This week, one of the teams aiming for the Cowboys is none other than their division foes, the Washington Redskins.
Ok, so foe is a weird term to put since the Cowboys-Redskins rivalry hasn’t been as heated as it used to be back when Roger and Troy were running the show. Yet, this week is a big opportunity for both teams to show the NFL who they really are. The Redskins came close last week to a dominating win over the Eagles, before Carson Wentz brought Philly back to life. The Cowboys want to prove that Sunday was no fluke over a bad Giants’ defense. Both teams will be ready to fight for something this Sunday and maybe for a week, one of the most storied rivalries burns bright again.
It will be a tougher week for Cowboys’ offense to light up the scoreboard as the Redskins actually have a talented defense. Their front seven is filled with quality impact players that can put pressure on the quarterback. They are helped on the outside by cornerback Josh Norman who makes it a mission to gear up for big-time match-ups.
Coming off a week where he was roasted by the Eagles’ Desean Jackson, look for a bounce-back game with Norman. Who will have to face Norman? That is a tough question because Washington could decide to move Norman around and try to find a match-up they like. Dak is going to have to be aware of this and keep an eye out.
As for running the ball, the offensive line is getting a break because they won’t have to face Jonathan Allen in this game. The talented defensive tackle makes a living on clogging up the running lanes and penetrating the pocket.
There are other talented guys on this defense though, especially on the line, and they are going to have to win their match-ups. Early on, this game could be a close battle down on the lines.
The biggest worry going into this game is rather on the defensive side of the ball. Last week, the Cowboys’ defense showed an inability to stop the run. They allowed Saquon Barkley to have a field day, especially on a 59-yard dash. This is a pattern we’ve seen since the late stages of the season in 2018.
While the Redskins don’t have their starting running back playing, they have two excellent weapons in Adrian Peterson and Chris Thompson ready to step up. Despite his age, Peterson still is a capable back and still managed to put up close to 100 yards rushing last time he faced the Cowboys.
Thompson is a talented athletic back that acts as their Swiss -Army knife. If the Cowboys can focus on their gap assignments and focusing at tackling the back carrier effectively, this defense can truly be dominant. They have the talent, they just lack the execution.
This looks like an easy game on paper, but it will be a slugfest. The team can’t take this game for granted. Road division games are one of the hardest things to face in football and this will be tough for, to say the least.
The Cowboys kick-off at Noon this Sunday on FOX.
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