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Ben McAdoo: “Let Me Know” Who’s Playing CB For Dallas Cowboys

Sean Martin



Ben McAdoo: "Let Me Know" Who's Playing CB For Dallas Cowboys

With all of the latest Ezekiel Elliott suspension updates in the news, it barely feels like the Dallas Cowboys will take the field - with Elliott - in just three days to kickoff the 2017 season at home against the New York Giants. Meeting their NFC East rivals in week one for the third consecutive year, these two teams with high hopes will indeed put on a show Sunday night, with fresh faces all over the field. Perhaps most notably, the Cowboys will throw their young secondary into the fire against Ben McAdoo and the Giants' passing game, with the New York HC far from impressed at the turnover Dallas experienced at CB and S.

David Helman on Twitter

Ben McAdoo quips that the Cowboys' secondary looks different in 2017. "If you know who's playing corner for them, you can let me know.

It is no secret that the Giants were the lone thorn in the side of the 2016 Cowboys through the regular season, as they won both meetings by a combined four points thanks in large part to a revamped defense built through free agency.

The Cowboys chose to revamp their secondary for 2017 through the draft, letting Brandon Carr, Morris Claiborne, Barry Church, and J.J. Wilcox walk in free agency. Second round pick CB Chidobe Awuzie and sixth round S Xavier Woods will be expected to make immediate impacts in replacing these veteran starters, as second-year CB Anthony Brown, FA acquisition Nolan Carroll, and veteran Orlando Scandrick will attempt to provide stability in transition at the position.

Ben McAdoo: "Let Me Know" Who's Playing CB For Dallas Cowboys 1

Dallas Cowboys cornerback Anthony Brown (30) runs off the field with his interception during a 2016 NFL week 14 regular season game against the New York Giants, Sunday, Dec. 11, 2016, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Giants defeated the Cowboys, 10-7. (James D. Smith via AP)

Regardless the state of the Cowboys' defense, they have done well to contain Eli Manning and the Giants over the past seasons. Two of the Giants' worst three passing performances by total yards gained over the last two seasons have come against the Cowboys .

Star NY receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has only reached 100 yards against the Cowboys once in his career, doing so back in 2014. His status for Sunday Night Football remains uncertain after he missed yet another practice on Wednesday.

New York Giants on Twitter

NYGiants Injury Report Did Not Practice: WR Odell Beckham (Ankle) LB Keenan Robinson (Concussion)

Cowboys Nation should be excited about having some real, meaningful football to dig into soon. The prospect of a young defensive backfield that will play with an added emphasis for getting to the football is an exciting one, as everyone from the rookies like Awuzie to "veterans" like Byron Jones should only improve as the season goes on.

The Giants will be a formidable test as always though, and just as Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott forced the world to take notice of them as rookies for America's Team a year ago, there are Cowboys defenders looking to do the same come Sunday. They can start by introducing themselves to Ben McAdoo at AT&T Stadium.

Tell us what you think about "Ben McAdoo: “Let Me Know” Who’s Playing CB For Dallas Cowboys" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Boro Panther, Montclair State Red Hawk, and most importantly a proud member of Cowboys Nation! I host "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Twitter: @SeanMartinNFL.

  • Matthew Harrell

    Ben McAdoo looks like Problem Child all grown up. Where’s the bow-tie?

  • nick

    He sure seems pretty cocky for barely beating us both times last year. I mean they beat a pair of rookies on opening night under the bright lights of NFL Sunday night football by 1 point, and those rookies never flinched, If Terrance got out of bounds who knows maybe Bailey nails that FG. I’ll give them credit though I’m not a hater, they swept us. But let’s not forget we swept them atleast 2 years in a row recently. Romo owned them late in his career. We’ll see how it goes Sunday with those 2 who aren’t rookies any more and dak has a full off-season of working with the starters getting all the 1st team reps, which he got none of last year. Hopefully zeke is running very HANGRY from all of this but stays focused and locked in as well. Then you have dez who’s finally %110 healthy and participated in a full off-season for the 1st time in 2 years and ready to regain that 2014 dominance again. And then there is switzer, he might only return punts and kicks and maybe a few plays on offense but hes going to help so much in Special teams alone with field position. We havnt had a return man since harris left and if hes anything like he was in college he could be alot better than harris. I can’t wait to see a package with switzer, beasley, witten, dez, and zeke on the field all at once, especially splitting zeke out wide with them, the giants will ish themselves, it will be raining 1st downs haha. And think about when they throw rico in with that same lineup later in the year, it’s going to be great. I’m not worried about marinnellis defense either I mean it’s coach marinnelli he always has his guys ready play. I’m really only concerned about Nolan Carroll that’s it. Hopefully chido can take that starting spot from him really early and lewis can pass him on the depth chart by midseason because i truly believe hes the weak link and a liability for giving up big plays and that’s what our defense is not supposed to do. We’ll see in a few days but I’m betting by the end of the game big mouth mcadoo will wish he kept his big mouth shut. Zekes going for over 120 yards atleast and 1 TD and I hope awuzie or brown pick off Eli and run and give the ball to mcadoo on there sideline that would be awesome wouldn’t it ?

    • Sean Martin

      Nick, thanks so much for reading and taking the time to share some thoughts. These are all spot on, we share the same excitement for some of the same young players heading into Sunday. Especially agree with you on Chido, we’ll see him out there and I’ll be keeping a very close eye.

    • Dustin Stone

      Wow. Cowboys fans are always completely out of touch with reality. The Giants have the Best secondary in the NFL Collins, DRC, Jenkins, Eli Apple, etc. The Dallas secondary is a joke. You are starting two rookies, a veteran in Scandrick that is really only a depth player at best. Your best D linemen are suspended for beating their wives or doing drugs (which is a reoccurring problem). What do you have? Yes absolutely the best O line. However let’s go back and remember that Zeke had 140 yards on 44 carries in TWO games against the Giants. We have the same D line minus Hankins, which had a perception of being very good but had a negative grade by PFF for the season. Jay Bromley and 2nd rounder Tomlinson are an upgrade. Snacks, Vernon and JPP are beast. JPP has looked absurd in the preseason now that he is healthy. Middle linebacker Goodson in his second season looks absolutely solid.
      After the oft injured and aging Dez who do you have? An ancient Witten? Compare that with OBJ, Sterling Shepard, Brandon Marshall and Evan Engram…hmmm which corp is better.
      Zeke is good guys but less not forget you have the best line. Remember McFadden ran for a grand one year? If Zeke is so great he should have put up 2500 yards behind that line. I could have put up 750 with that line.
      Dak yeah he was good but your game plan was conservative. He didn’t do anything spectacular. He is a younger Alex Smith. Smart yup, can run yup game manager yup.
      I will still take Eli and his experience. Our line is questionable no doubt but it is improved and you don’t have a good enough D line anyway. So talk crap about the Giants Oline fine but you have jack crap on your entire D. You don’t have the receivers to outscore people.
      I guarantee the Giants Defense will be even better than their top ten finish last year. I guarantee the O line will be better and Paul Perkins is going to run on your horrible D line. I guarantee with or without OBJ we are going to light up your horrible secondary.
      Dallas fans the media helps y’all out every year prior to the season start. Every year I hear about how great y’all will be and how many Super Bowls have you won in the last 20 years? Crickets
      Tamper down your expectations it won’t hurt as bad by mid season.

      • nick

        Dez bryant is the best receiver in the league at scoring TDs when healthy, how do you win games ? by scoring points that’s how and he’s back dez is going to torch Jenkins just like he did when he was with the rams, hes going to get the real dez. And if anyone getting old and aging it’s Brandon Marshall. Then we have beasley the 1st down slot machine but wait we got another dude in ryan switzer who is a clone of beasley and already looks un guardable oh and he tied the record for kick/punt returns for TDs in college history good luck with them 2 on the field together.
        And ya witten is a little old but he’s still 1 of the greatest tightend ever if not the best and at 35 still seems to be consistent and on the field requiring alot of attention from opposing defenses especially yours which he usually seems to get the best of, you remember that romo to witten game winning TD with just a few seconds to go just a few years ago, it probably still hurts haha. And Evan Engram he cant block for crap so when hes on the field the whole world’s going to know it’s a pass i mean you guy drafted someone in the 1st round who cant even play every down. Zeke missed a ton of training camp time as a rookie with a ham string injury and had to get his feet wet that’s why that first game he only ran for so little yards. He’s going to run u guys over he is pissed about all of this and he’s going to let it all out on you. If he had 400 carries like Murray in 2014 I guarantee he would have went for 2,000 yards. And our D-line your talking bad about was number 1 against the run last year and we only upgraded that significantly with Taco and Paea and the whole line is healthy not to mention jaylon smith that top 5 talent we stole in 2016 will be there to help shut your running game completely down which you guys don’t have anyway. He’ll be right there alongside arguably the best LB in the league Sean Lee who owns you guys every time. And let’s talk about our secondary. Scandrick is %100 healthy and if you know football then you’d know he’s one of the best slot corners in the entire league and no hes not coming off an ACL injury this year and he’s not dealing with 2 strained hamstrings he’s going to shut shepherd down all by himself. And Anthony Brown that 6th round gem we stole last year was playing like the best corner in the league the last 5 games last year and he looked solid all year as a ROOKIE and he has 4.3 speed perfect to match up with Odell with a little safety help over the top of course because odell is really good and hes all you got . In any other draft chidobe awuzie would have been a first round pick but it was so deep at CB we stole him late in the second and looks like he’s going to be really good. And jourdan lewis the best cover corner in the entire draft last year, ya he slid to us in the 3rd round because he’s a little short and had a DV case going but he decided to take it all the way to trial and he won, so i wouldn’t be surprised if our secondary is better than yours by midseason. And Dak had the best rookie season in NFL history so You can take Eli all you want over Dak that’s ok when hes done in a couple years just know you have to deal with Dak Zeke and that great O-line for the next 10 plus years and there only getting better your not dealing with rookies that you could barely beat last year, the game plan won’t be so “conservative” for you guys this year. Your garbage O-line will be your downfall this year with no time to throw to your “weapons”. And yea the media loves to talk about us we’re America’s team and you hate us cause you ain’t us, probably because we still have more super bowls than you and we havnt won 1 in 20 years.

      • Sean Martin


        • PDidIt

          Ah he ain’t writing an article now after breaking down our team so eloquently, that’s why I just watch the game & know you didn’t have a clue, just pure and simple ignorance. That’s OK but I pray you learned NEVER to talk
          this kind of smack and then lose. Everything about what the Giants are going to do. Did you see (#70 for you to figure out who he is) knocked JPP flat on his ass. Blame us winning cause of our OLine, cause poor Eli looked pedestrian and maybe just maybe you aren’t as good and never will be until he has an OLine.

  • Jimmy Smith

    So Eli will know the names of the guys he is throwing to?

    • Dustin Stone

      Yes of course they are his receivers. You think the Cowboys secondary, which would be 2nd and 3rd string on the Giants is going to come out and beat Shepard, Marshall Engram and maybe OBJ? Don’t think so.

    • nick

      Ya there names are Scandrick, Brown, Awuzie, Heath, and Jones HAHA.

    • Jimmy Smith

      What was that? I guess you know now.

  • Dallasridge

    Who will the giants be playing on their o-line?

    • Sean Martin

      Ereck Flowers still starting at LT is all you need to know there haha…thanks for reading!

      • Dallasridge

        Oh how I would love to see Manning throw a pic six and after bring the ball back to Macadoo doo….and introduce themselves to him…..

  • DevilDog58

    The only thing that ticks me off is since the Giants beat us in the first game at Jerry’s World, it seems like we ALWAYS open the season with them. I definitely think someone at the scheduling office either hates Dallas or loves the Giants. How about letting us play someone like the Browns on opening night?

    • Bryson Treece

      Cowboys and Giants are two of the most successful season opener teams, so it’s good business to pit them together. Being rivals adds to it. I agree, but I also see why it happens.

Game Notes

Cowboys, Redskins Week 7 Injury Report

Jess Haynie



Cowboys, Redskins Week 7 Injury Report
Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Though it's still early in the 2018 season, the lead in the NFC East is up for grabs when the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins meet this Sunday. Both teams would like their full roster available for the game, but the Week 7 injury reports indicate that won't be the case.

Here are the players either confirmed to be out of action tomorrow or are otherwise listed by Dallas and Washington:

Dallas Cowboys

  • WR Tavon Austin (groin) - OUT
  • LB Joe Thomas (foot) - OUT
  • CB Chidobe Awuzie (ankle) - Questionable

The Cowboys are getting healthier, with Sean Lee finally off the injury report and set to return to action. Not only will Dallas get their elite linebacker back, but it means a deeper rotation while the team remains without Joe Thomas.

Tavon Austin elected to skip season-ending surgery on his injured groin, but his should be out a few weeks. That will put Cole Beasley on punt returns and perhaps create more offensive opportunities for Deonte Thompson and Brice Butler.

Awuzie remains limited in practice but has played the last few weeks despite the ankle injury. There is no reason to think he won't suit up in Washington.

Washington Redskins

  • WR Jamison Crowder (ankle) - OUT
  • WR Paul Richardson (shoulder, knee) - Doubtful
  • S Troy Apke (hamstring) - Doubtful
  • RB Adrian Peterson (ankle, shoulder) - Questionable
  • RB Chris Thompson (rib, knee) - Questionable
  • G Shawn Lauvao (calf) - Questionable
  • CB Quinton Dunbar (shin) - Questionable
  • CB Danny Johnson (forearm) - Questionable

It's a rough time for Washington's offensive weapons. They will definitely be without slot receiver Jamison Crowder and likely starter Paul Richardson, who current lead all WRs in receptions. Josh Doctson will put into a major role, as will veteran Brian Quick off the bench.

Peterson and Thompson both practiced this week and should play, but have nagging injuries that could slow them down. Washington is already missing Rob Kelley and rookie Derrius Guice, who are both on injured reserve.

Starting left guard Shawn Lauvao is also nursing a lower leg injury, but practiced in a limited capacity all week. His backup is undrafted rookie Casey Dunn out of Auburn.

In the defensive backfield, starting CB Quinton Dunbar was a Friday addition to the injury report with a shin injury. He did practice with it, though, so will likely play. Backup safety Troy Apke is doubtful with a hamstring issue.

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Game Notes

Cowboys Focused on Improved Communication to Solve Road Woes at Redskins

Sean Martin



Cowboys Focused on Improved Communication to Solve Road Woes at Redskins

The Dallas Cowboys are 0-3 on the road this season. Not only do you already know this, but they do as well, needing to build off a 40-7 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in week 6 at AT&T Stadium to claim first place in the NFC East at the Washington Redskins.

Although the Cowboys were given Monday and Tuesday off, they are focused on addressing one alarming reason why the team has struggled so much on the road -- particularly on offense.

Running Back Ezekiel Elliott pointed out the Cowboys lack of communication in early season losses at Carolina, Seattle, and Houston. "Seeing the same thing," was the issue Elliott addressed when discussing the Cowboys knowing their assignments in hostile territory.

Yesterday, Quarterback Dak Prescott told the media of a meeting between players and coaches that addressed this specifically.

David Moore on Twitter

Dak Prescott said players & coaches held a meeting before today's practice to "address the elephant in the room," which is poor communication among the offense on the road. "I know we'll take a lot from that conversation," The QB said.

Unlike Prescott's remarks about new "wrinkles" in the Cowboys offense prior to a 26-24 home win over the Lions, this has a tangible sign of progress for an offense that made scoring 40 on the Jaguars look impossibly easy. The Cowboys season high in total yards remains the 414 amassed against Detroit, after which Prescott confessed that he simply tells the media "things" that aren't necessarily true.

The Cowboys didn't necessarily do anything new against the Lions, but they most assuredly will this week against the Redskins, at least by way of signaling and remaining in sync on offense.

Prescott and Elliott's leadership is on full display here, and their on-field impact can be attributed as closely to the Cowboys successes or failures as any duo in the NFL.

Missing is a similar impact from Center Travis Frederick, who remains sidelined as he deals with GSB.

Joe Looney's play at center has been good enough to pave the way for Elliott's 586 rushing yards so far, second to Todd Gurley at 623 yards, but his ability to call checks for the offense is understandably much more limited.

Looney deserves all the credit in the world for his strong play in place of Frederick. The Cowboys have never asked for him to be anything he isn't, a reliable depth option that earned a second contract and with it the starting center job for the time being in Dallas.

He has the full support of his teammates, Frederick included. All of this is lovely to put down in writing until Looney and the Cowboys have been forced to step on the field with the crowd against them and attempt to sustain a drive, something Frederick will unfortunately not be a part of for a long while.

If the Cowboys offense isn't going to unveil new wrinkles in the scheme, there is one wrinkle worth mentioning that's new to the team's communication on offense this season. With Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan up in the box, his play calls are sent down to first-year Quarterback Coach Kellen Moore, who has been in the ear of Prescott ever since playing with him from 2016-17.

Sure, these are things that could've been addressed before the Cowboys managed only eight points in week one, turned the ball over three times in week three, or punted away their best chance at victory in week five. The best teams in the league likely already have these things down to routine, and few would consider the Cowboys anywhere near the upper echelon of the NFL.

Following sixty minutes of football at a division rival they've won four in a row against, with an even more impressive five game win streak at the Redskins, the Cowboys could control their own path atop the NFC East.

That feels truly incredible for such a young team faced with a steep learning curve early in the season, adjusting to it on the fly as they prepare to leave everything on the field before a bye week.

Tell us what you think about "Cowboys Focused on Improved Communication to Solve Road Woes at Redskins" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

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Game Notes

#WASvsDAL: Why This Game Holds Increased Importance

Kevin Brady



Cowboys Pass Rush Better than They're Given Credit For
James D. Smith/Dallas Cowboys

It feels incredibly cliche to call the week 7 match-up between the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins a "must win." Especially for someone like me who values statistics, logic, and analytics in sports.

But when the analytics agree with the narratives, those narratives do tend to get my attention. And this week that would appear to be the case.

According to Brian Burke of ESPN, the Cowboys's week 7 game has the highest playoff probability leverage in the entire NFC, and is second to only the Houston Texans' big game with Jacksonville around the entire league.

Brian Burke on Twitter

Playoff leverage for week 7. DAL, WAS, PHI, CAR, MIN, CHI with a lot on the line in the NFC. HOU, CIN, and JAX in the AFC.

What does this mean? Well playoff probability leverage is pretty intuitive. Basically it is the difference between a win this week and a loss this week in terms of probability to make the playoffs.

For the Cowboys that number is at 27%, with a win over Washington catapulting their playoff probability over 50%. On the other hand, a loss would take a big hit to their playoff hopes just 7 games into the NFL season.

As you might expect, this game means a lot to the Redskins' playoff probability as well. Their playoff leverage this week is at 14%, but a win would mean "more" to Dallas than Washington based on the probabilities.

Fellow NFC East foe, the Philadelphia Eagles, also have a lot to gain/lose this Sunday, with their leverage sitting at 22%. According to Burke's model, the Eagles and Cowboys have the best chances of making the playoffs at this point, but if each team wins Sunday the Eagles will still have a higher percentage.

Of course a lot can and will change week to week, despite what the metrics say. The Cowboys still have two games remaining with the NFC East favorite Eagles this year, and will get another crack at Washington at home later in the season. Plus the Cowboys have a few NFC wild card and playoff contenders remaining on their schedule, such as the New Orleans Saints and Atlanta Falcons. (Yes, the 2-4 Falcons are very much alive in this crazy conference).

Still, the difference between 4-3 (2-0 in the division) and 3-4 (1-1 in the division) is huge, as is shown by Brian Burke's playoff probability leverage metric.

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