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5 Things Cowboys Can Learn From The Steelers Vs. Giants Game

Brian Martin

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Cowboys Headlines - 5 Things Cowboys Can Learn From The Steelers Vs. Giants Game

The Dallas Cowboys are on an impressive 11 game winning streak, but in order to continue that winning streak they will have to go on the road and beat the only team that has beaten them this season, the New York Giants.

When these two teams square off against one another you can almost guarantee that it will be a hard-fought game that comes down to the very end. That is exactly what I expect Sunday afternoon.

Fortunately, the Pittsburgh Steelers may have just provided the perfect blueprint for the Cowboys to beat the Giants and expand their lead over the NFC East division.

Now, the Cowboys don't really have much to play for since they have already locked up a spot in the playoffs, but if they want home-field advantage, they need to continue to win games.

Below are the five things I think the Dallas Cowboys could've possibly learned from the matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Giants last weekend

Lean on Ezekiel Elliott

Cowboys Headlines - Sterling Shepard Uses "Dem Boyz" on Instagram, Gets Called Out by Ezekiel ElliottOkay, this maybe a little obvious, but if the Dallas Cowboys learned anything watching what the Steelers were able to do on the ground and through the air with Le'Veon Bell, then they would be wise to follow suit with Ezekiel Elliott.

Le'Veon Bell was a huge thorn in the side of the New York Giants defense the entire game. He rushed for 118 yards on the ground and added another 64 yards through the air.

The Cowboys have been somewhat reluctant to use Elliott in the receiving game so far in 2016, but this would be a good game to use that part of his repertoire. He's already had several big plays catching the ball out of the backfield and we all know he is a threat to take it to the house anytime the ball is in his hands.

Now, this may not happen because the Cowboys have more weapons on the offensive side of the ball than the Steelers do. But, any time you give Ezekiel Elliott the opportunity to make a play, good things usually follow.

I fully expect Ezekiel Elliott to have a huge impact on the outcome of the game.

Target the Tight end

Cowboys Headlines - A Reminder To The World: Jason Witten Is An All-Time Great

The defense for the Giants did a pretty good job of containing Antonio Brown and the rest of the Steelers wide receivers, but failed to remember about the tight end position.

Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Ladarius Green caught six passes for 110 yards and one touchdown against the Giants Sunday afternoon.

Jason Witten might not be as big as a receiving threat as Green at this point in his career, but that doesn't mean he can't find the same type of success. Witten still has a veterans saviness to his game and knows how to get separation from whoever is trying to cover him.

The Giants secondary can't cover everybody. With threats like Dez Bryant and Cole Beasley, that could leave a lot of opportunities for Dak Prescott to hook up with Jason Witten.

Make Eli Manning uncomfortable

Cowboys Headlines - Reel Talk: Should the Cowboys Be Concerned About Benson Mayowa? 2

We all know that Eli Manning struggles was when he has pressure in his face and the Pittsburgh Steelers defense was able to do just that.

Now, the Dallas Cowboys defensive front has struggled nearly in the entire season getting QB sacks, but have been able to be somewhat successful applying pressure.

The best way to throw Manning off his game is to collapse the pocket around him. That's usually when he makes a mistake in the passing game. And any time you can create more opportunities for the Cowboys offense by getting the Giants off the field, is a good thing.

Ereck Flowers particularly had a tough game, and I would expect defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli to attack him early and often to try make Eli Manning as uncomfortable as possible.

Stop the Giants running game

Cowboys Headlines - 5 Things Cowboys Can Learn From The Steelers Vs. Giants Game 1The Pittsburgh Steelers pretty much made the Giants offense one-dimensional by stopping the running game.

Rookie running back Paul Perkins was the leading rusher for the Giants, but only managed 38 yards on seven carries.

The Dallas Cowboys have been pretty good about containing opposing rushers in 2016. I'm pretty sure they have yet to allow a 100 yard rusher this season and let's just hope that streak continues this week.

The more one-dimensional the Cowboys can make the Giants offense, the easier it is to keep Eli Manning and the Giants wide receivers from taking over the game.

Contain Odell Beckham Jr.

Cowboys Headlines - 5 Things Cowboys Can Learn From The Steelers Vs. Giants Game 3I would've predicted that Odell Beckham Jr. would've had a huge game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but that really wasn't the case Sunday afternoon.

Now, Beckham did finished the game with 10 catches for 100 yards, but the Steelers secondary did a really good job of making things as difficult as possible the entire game. To say that that frustrated Beckham would be an understatement.

Back in the season opener, the Cowboys secondary limited Beckham to just four catches for 73 yards, but that was with Morris Claiborne in the lineup.

The Cowboys defense simply can't allow Beckham to take over the game if they want a chance of continuing their winning streak.

I expect the secondary for the Cowboys to be physical and make Beckham work for every catch he gets, much like the Steelers secondary.

What do you think the Dallas Cowboys learned from the Steelers/Giants game?

Please feel free to use the comment section below to share your thoughts and opinions on this topic.



Level C2/C3 quadriplegic. College graduate with a bachelors degree in sports and health sciences-concentration sports management. Sports enthusiast. Dallas Cowboys fanatic. Lover of life with a glass half-full point of view.

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REPORT: Cowboys Visiting With Free Agent S Eric Berry Tuesday

Brian Martin

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REPORT: Cowboys Visiting With Free Agent S Eric Berry Tuesday

According to Ian Rapoport, the Dallas Cowboys have a meeting scheduled to visit with Free Agent Safety Eric Berry Tuesday at The Star.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

Source: Former #Chiefs S and new free agent Eric Berry is visiting the #Cowboys on Tuesday. His first visit. They have a need there...

Eric Berry has spent his entire career with the Kansas City Chiefs after they drafted him fifth overall in the 2010 NFL Draft. After signing Earl Thomas last week, the Chiefs decided to part ways with their former All-Pro Safety.

Berry, 30 is an intriguing free agent for the Dallas Cowboys. When healthy, he is arguably one of the best safeties in the league. Unfortunately, injuries have kept him off the field these last few seasons causing him to only start in only three games since 2016.

This is a move many of us expected to happen after the Cowboys decided not to get into a bidding war for Earl Thomas, a player linked to Dallas for over a year now. In Berry, Cowboys Nation would be getting a similar player with the same kind of red flags. Both Thomas and Berry have to be approached with caution due to their injury history the past few years.

Depending on his asking price, Eric Berry absolutely makes sense for the Dallas Cowboys. He would be an upgrade over Jeff Heath and would pair well with the Cowboys up-and-coming three-year safety Xavier Woods.

This is still just a visit, so we should probably get our hopes up that a signing is imminent. But, I think we can all agree Eric Berry is exactly the "right kind of guy" Jason Garrett is always preaching about. He's a cancer survivor, five-time Pro Bowler, and All-Pro player. What's not to like!?



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BREAKING: Dallas Cowboys Signed DE Kerry Hyder

Brian Martin

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BREAKING: Dallas Cowboys Signed DE Kerry Hyder

The Dallas Cowboys added more defensive line help today after signing former Detroit Lions Defensive End Kerry Hyder.

Kerry Hyder Jr. on Twitter

Going back to Texas! #CowboysNation

Kerry Hyder provides more depth at the defensive end position and as a chance to become the starter opposite DeMarcus Lawrence while Randy Gregory is out serving his suspension.

Hyder, 27 originally signed as an undrafted free agent out of Texas Tech with the New York Jets in 2014. He spent a year in New York before signing a future/reserve contract with the Detroit Lions in January 2015.

He had a breakout eight-sack year with the Lions in 2016, but tore his Achilles in 2017 causing him to miss the entire season. In 2018 he had just one quarterback sack after Detroit switched to a 3-4 defensive scheme.

Overall, this is a good depth signing by the Dallas Cowboys. Kerry Hyder has starting potential, but shouldn't keep the Cowboys from upgrading the position further through either another free agent signing for the draft.



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Dallas Cowboys 2019 Free Agency: Week One Recap

Jess Haynie

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Tavon Austin

It's been just a week since NFL free agents could begin negotiating with other teams, but it feels like a lifetime for anxious Cowboys fans. Dallas' seemingly passive approach to 2019 free agency has left many disappointed. Still, there are some moves to recap.

As has become their strategy in recent years, the Cowboys have focused on filling up their depth chart and trying to avoid any glaring holes prior to next month's draft. They've re-signed several backups and added at least one likely rotation player.

It's still far too early to judge Dallas' activity. Comparing the 2019 roster to last year will depend heavily on the draft, growth from current players, and other factors. But with the "second wave" of free agency upon us, it's a good time to look at who's come, gone, and stuck around so far.

New Arrivals

  • TE Jason Witten (unretired)
  • TE Codey McElroy (Rams)
  • DT Christian Covington (Texans)

The biggest addition so far this offseason wasn't even a free agent, at least not in the purest sense of the term. Jason Witten's surprising return from retirement helped shore up one of Dallas' biggest needs, though it may not preclude them from drafting a tight end high in April.

Also at tight end, Dallas signed developmental project Codey McElroy. His experience is in baseball and basketball, having played just one year of college football. But at 6'6'" and 255 lbs., and having spent last year working with the Rams, the Cowboys must see something they're intrigued by.

Last week Dallas signed Christian Covington, who had 3.5 sacks for Houston in 2018 playing as a 3-4 defensive end. He should move to DT in the Cowboys' scheme and should be a solid addition to their rotation.

Dallas Cowboys 2019 Free Agency: Week One Recap

Former Cowboys WR Cole Beasley, now with the Buffalo Bills. (Derek Gee/Buffalo News)

Departures

  • WR Cole Beasley (Bills)
  • TE Geoff Swaim (Jaguars)
  • DL David Irving (shenanigans)
  • LB Damien Wilson (Chiefs)

Beasley is heading to Buffalo on a four-year, $29 million deal. It appeared the relationship soured between Cole and Dallas over his playing time last year, and clearly the Cowboys didn't fight hard to keep him.

Damien Wilson followed Anthony Hitchens to Kansas City to help round out their linebacker corps. Once it was announced that Dallas was hanging on to Sean Lee in 2019, it was fairly certain that Wilson wouldn't be back.

Also not expected back was TE Geoff Swaim, who signed with Jacksonville. Even before Witten came back, Dallas appeared likely to stick with Blake Jarwin and Dalton Schultz for returning talent and then add an upgrade via free agency or the draft.

While still a free agent, nobody expects David Irving back in Dallas or even the NFL after recent activities. Irving appears focused on a Hollywood career and advocating for medical marijuana use at this point.

Keepers

  • FB Jamize Olawale
  • WR Tavon Austin
  • WR Allen Hurns (team option)
  • OT Cam Fleming
  • G/C Joe Looney (team option)
  • DE DeMarcus Lawrence (franchise tag)
  • DT Daniel Ross (ERFA)
  • LB Justin March-Lillard
  • S Darian Thompson

While Dallas put the franchise tag on prized pass rusher DeMarcus Lawrence, his return in 2019 is far from settled. Lawrence has previously sworn he wouldn't play under a second franchise tag this year, and last we heard the two sides are far apart on a long-term deal. Could a holdout be on the horizon?

The Cowboys doubled-down on WR depth by re-signing Tavon Austin and exercising their team option on Allen Hurns' contract. Both are able to play out of the slot, meaning we could see more of a rotation approach to replacing Cole Beasley next year.

Dallas also re-signed fullback Jamize Olawale, which was a surprise given his low usage rate last year. Perhaps the change to Kellen Moore at offensive coordinator was behind this one, hoping to take better advantage of Olawale's receiving skills going forward.

Joe Looney and Cam Fleming will also be back as valuable backups on the offensive line. Looney started 16 games last year at center and also helps at guard, while Fleming will be the swing tackle once again for his second season in Dallas.

On defense, Dallas kept Daniel Ross in their DT rotation after solid performance in 2018. Justin March-Lillard return at linebacker, particularly for his value on special teams. And Darian Thompson, a former third-round pick by the Giants, is back as an ongoing developmental player.

~ ~ ~

Today we're already seeing a flourish of free agent activity in Dallas. Reports this morning have them meeting with WR Randall Cobb and S Clayton Geathers, and we haven't even had lunch yet.

If this is any indication, next week's recap may have a lot more to discuss.



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