Connect with us

Game Notes

Cowboys Vs Eagles: ITS Picks For The “Rookie Duel” In Arlington Tonight

Published

on

The Star News - Cowboys Vs Eagles: ITS Picks For The "Rookie Dual" In Arlington Tonight

Well, well, well... we've certainly got a treat tonight. The Dallas Cowboys host long-time divisional foe, the Philadelphia Eagles, tonight at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX, and it's quite a matchup from start to finish. The biggest story of the night is undoubtedly the rookies at work in this one, and thanks to them, I think we can safely save the tricks for Halloween tomorrow night.

Dak Prescott has looked good, real good, in 2016. Not only is he a rookie QB playing like a good second or third year vet, but he's a fourth round pick, the eight QB selected in the 2016 NFL draft, and he's making millions of fans -- not to mention the Cowboys front office -- actually consider if he should start, or if it should be Tony Romo.

All the petty arguing and trolling aside, just let that sink in for a moment.

Let it sink in that all the experts said 2016 was a weak class for QBs, that while there were several good QBs, nothing spectacular would come out of this class at that position. Paxton Lynch and Jared Goff may be experiencing rather typical rookie struggles, but Dak Prescott certainly isn't.

And neither is Carson Wentz.

Granted, Wentz may have come down a level or two the last coupe of weeks, but he's been keeping step with Prescott for the rookie QB battle to watch in the NFL. Tonight he's going to step onto one of the biggest stages in the world with his team and try to, at the very least, keep momentum going.

Wentz and the Eagles maybe didn't look so hot last week, but it was a rough game all around. And lest we forget, they did play, and defeat, the unbeaten Minnesota Vikings. Ugly or not, a win is a win.

That's something to remind ourselves for this contest; a win is a win. It doesn't actually matter if the 'Boys knock off the who-care's like the Bengals or a hated rival like the Eagles, a win is a win. It's all another number at the end of the season, and the number we're shooting for tonight is an NFC East best 6-1.

Enough pontificating. It's time to get to the staff's picks.

Brian Martin | @Bmart0204

Division games are always tough to predict because the two teams know each other so well, but I believe the Dallas Cowboys continue their hot streak this week against the Philadelphia Eagles. I think this game will ultimately be decided by whoever wins in the trenches. If the Cowboys offensive line dominates the Eagles front-seven, Ezekiel Elliott and Dak Prescott will take care of the rest.

Cowboys 24 – Eagles 17

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Kevin Brady | @Kevinbrady88

Flat out, I think the Cowboys are better than the Eagles. At home, coming off of a bye, and riding this five-game win streak, I see no reason why the Cowboys shouldn't come out on top this week.

Sure, the Eagles present some problems with their front-seven and can create big plays on Special Teams, but the Cowboys rushing attack will be too much. Dallas plays another week of (almost) mistake free football, and improves to 6-1.

Cowboys 31 – Eagles 21

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

RJ Ochoa | @RJOchoa

The Cowboys Coaching Staff is en fuego this season.

You give those guys an extra week of preparation (and some historical knowledge from Scott Linehan) and this thing is over. Cowboys are going to run right at Philly.

Cowboys 27 – Eagles 17

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Sean Martin | @ShoreSportsNJ

Can you really pick against this Cowboys team right now? Fresh off of a bye week and looking for their sixth straight win, I'll take Ezekiel Elliott and Dak Prescott to do just enough offensively - with Dez Bryant finding the end zone twice. Carson Wentz throws an interception on the Eagles final drive to increase Dallas' lead in the division for good.

Cowboys 21 – Eagles 14

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Ian Koplowitz | @BleedingTheStar

I think the Cowboys are looking at this game as their chance to assert themselves as the team to beat in the division. They liked their chances before, but learning that Bennie Logan will be out of the lineup certainly bodes well.

I believe there's enough tape on Carson Wentz at this point for Rod and this defense to scheme up a nice game plan, especially coming off the bye. Divisional games are never easy, but I think we start to win games at home with the crowd excitement being generated by our fantastic rookie class.

Cowboys 31 – Eagles 23

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Jess Haynie | @CowboysAddicts

The Eagles will be without two key defensive players (DT Bennie Logan, CB Ron Brooks) while the Cowboys are getting Dez Bryant back. Carson Wentz is the Eagles' best chance to win, but he's cooled off lately.

Cowboys 30 – Eagles 23

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

John Williams | @John9williams

This game is being billed as a matchup of rookie quarterbacks, but to me it's a matchup that will be won or lost by the guys playing in the trenches.

I expect the Cowboys to continue to make good opposing defensive lines look average as they open up holes for Ezekiel Elliott and Alfred Morris to run, and provide enough protection for Dak Prescott to get the ball to his plethora of play-making wide receivers. Dallas' defensive line should be able to make plays against the Philadelphia Eagles average offensive line.

Cowboys 30 – Eagles 14

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Justin Grohowski | @Grohowknowhow

Dallas faces yet another test Sunday night against a strong defensive unit. But the Eagles haven't faced an offensive line of this elite level yet and that will be the difference here.

Both rookies continue to shine as the running game dominates. Dez Bryant has a big game as well. He typically owns the Eagles and that continues here. Dallas gets a big cushion in the NFC East.

Cowboys 27 – Eagles 20

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Bryson Treece | @BrysonTreece

The Eagles are just off an upset against the Vikings, so even if Carson Wentz wasn't so pristine at the end of it, don't count them out just yet. Plus, division rivals tend to surprise with a deep knowledge of the team and that extra fire motivating players.

It's gonna be tough; no doubt about that. The Eagles are going to come into our house and do what they do, leaving the Cowboys to stop them if they want to win. I won't lie, I'm not convinced. This Cowboys defense has holes that can be exploited, we'll just have to see if they continue to upset opposing offences enough for Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott to make things happen.

Cowboys 30 – Eagles 23

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

Tonight is the 115th meeting between the Cowboys and Eagles, and you know it's going to be a game worth talking about afterward. These teams rarely face-off without some excitement, some controversy, someone upset.

So, as always, be safe, be happy, and if you're at AT&T Stadium tonight... MAKE SOME NOISE!!!



This is the General Staff account for Inside The Star, a blog for Dallas Cowboys news, scores, schedule, rumors, and analysis. We are the official home for @CowboysNation on Twitter. Follow us today for new content updates straight from our timeline. To learn more about our staff, please visit our Staff listing.

Advertisement
Click to comment

Game Notes

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly for Cowboys Against Giants

Brian Martin

Published

on

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly for Cowboys Against Giants

I don't know about you, but I feel a lot better this week about the Dallas Cowboys after they thoroughly controled the game against the New York Giants last Sunday night. It amazes me how much better they played in the second week of the 2018 season as opposed to what they put on the field Week 1 against the Carolina Panthers.

The Dallas Cowboys performed better in all three phases of the game. The defense was simply outstanding, the offense looked much improved, and the fact that there weren't any breakdowns on special teams is an added plus. Overall, it's hard to be too disappointed with the way the overall team performed Sunday.

With all of that in mind, I want to share with you what I believe is The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly for the Dallas Cowboys from the primetime matchup with the division rival New York Giants. I know you may disagree with what I decided to go with in each category, but that's part of the fun of it.

The Good

Taco Charlton

Dallas Cowboys DE Taco Charlton (AP Photo/Ron Jenkins)

If you watched the Dallas Cowboys against the New York Giants Sunday night then you pretty much know what the good was. How could I not go with the Cowboys defense? They were simply phenomenal against the Giants and are starting to become the identity of this year's team.

The Cowboys pass rush continuously put pressure on Quarterback Eli Manning and ended the game with six QB sacks. Nearly every defensive lineman got in on the action, which is hopefully a sign of things to come. The secondary was also really impressive. They played man-to-man coverage nearly the entire game and shut down the Giants aerial attack, including Odell Beckham Jr.

I was also really pleased to see the Cowboys linebackers playing much better. You may not have noticed, but the coaching staff is going with a rotation of sorts with the LBs, and it really looked as if it's helping keep them fresh. This could pay huge dividends moving forward, especially with Sean Lee's injury concerns.

The Bad

Dak Prescott

Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott

I debated several different things to put in this section, but ultimately I decided the bad for the Dallas Cowboys Sunday night was Quarterback Dak Prescott and the passing game. Yes, it was better than what we saw from them in Week 1 against the Carolina Panthers, but there is still a lot of work that needs to be done from both Prescott and his receivers.

Unfortunately, Prescott only completed 16 of 25 passes for 160 yards and one touchdown against the Giants. Those are nearly identical numbers to what he put up against the Panthers, the only difference is he was much more successful on the ground, rushing for 45 yards on seven carries. If you take away his long TD completion to Wide Receiver Tavon Austin, those numbers are even more depressing.

The passing game and Dak Prescott needs to improve dramatically. The Cowboys simply aren't going to be able to continue to win games like this. The offense should've been able to put up a lot more points on the Giants Sunday night. Hopefully, things will continue to get better because if not, the Cowboys are in trouble.

The Ugly

There was a number of different directions I could've gone here, but for me the ugly for the Dallas Cowboys Sunday night against the Giants was the penalties. Penalties became a problem for the Cowboys in Week 1 against the Panthers and once again reared their ugly head against the Giants. Unfortunately, this has continuously been a problem under the tutelage of Head Coach Jason Garrett.

The Dallas Cowboys were lucky that the untimely penalties didn't have much impact on the outcome of the game. If they would have been playing a better team than the Giants, they probably wouldn't have overcome the long down and distances. I want to believe this can be cleaned up, but Jason Garrett's going to have to start holding his players accountable, which at this point seems a little unlikely.

The Cowboys players are going to take it upon themselves to cut down the penalties. Most of the time it's just mental mistakes, so there is reason to believe they can accomplish this task. But, they are really going to have to buckle down and focus on remaining consistent down after down.

What is your good, bad, and ugly for the Dallas Cowboys against the Giants?



Continue Reading

Game Notes

Monday Morning Hangover: Cowboys Bounce Back Against Giants

Brian Martin

Published

on

Monday Morning Hangover: Cowboys Bounce Back Against Giants

Unlike last week, today's Monday morning hangover isn't nearly as bad. Thankfully, the Dallas Cowboys had a bounce back game against the New York Giants Sunday night, meaning you were probably drinking in celebration instead of drowning your sorrows. Hopefully, this continues.

Today, I want to do a little recap over what took place last night for the Dallas Cowboys and share with you some of the good and not so good I observed. Luckily, there was much more good for the Cowboys compared to what they put on the field Week 1 against the Carolina Panthers.

First off, how impressive was the Cowboys defensive play against the Giants? The pass rush consistently put pressure on Eli Manning and finished the night with six quarterback sacks. Nearly all of the defensive line got in on the action. I think we can credit Passing Game Coordinator and Defensive Backs Coach Kris Richard for the aggressive game plan.

The pass rush wasn't all that was dominant against the Giants for the Cowboys defense. Dallas' secondary pretty much shut down Odell Beckham Jr. and the rest of the Giants aerial attack. They played man-to-man coverage nearly the entire night and it paid off. Again, I think we can give credit to Kris Richard. He's changed how these defensive backs are being utilized.

Jeff Heath, Saquon Barkley

Dallas Cowboys S Jeff Heath (Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports)

The one negative I took away from the Cowboys defensive performance was the missed tackles once again. There were several Cowboys defenders who failed to take down Giants Running Back Saquon Barkley on first contact. Barkley unfortunately was able to pick up several yards after contact because of this. Tackling was a problem against the Panthers as well and it needs to be cleaned up in a hurry.

Offensively, the Dallas Cowboys looked like an entirely different unit than what took the field in Week 1 against the Carolina Panthers. Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan was much more aggressive with his playcalling, evidenced by the long touchdown pass to Tavon Austin on the first offensive series.

Unlike against the Panthers, Linehan put Dak Prescott in the best position to succeed. He didn't have No. 4 sit in the pocket, instead he put him on the move and allowed him to use his mobility to put pressure on the Giants defense. I believe this is where Prescott is at his best and should continued to be utilized in this manner.

Ezekiel Elliott didn't have the biggest rushing totals, but we all know the Giants defense was trying to take him out of the game. He finished the night with 78 rushing yards on 17 carries, but he did manage to pretty much put the game away with a rushing TD. Personally, I would love to see Zeke more involved in the passing game, especially down the field instead of around on a scrimmage.

All in all, the Dallas Cowboys did what they needed to do in order to secure the victory. They still have several things they need to clean up and improve upon, but what team doesn't at this point in the season. Now, they need to carry over this momentum into Week 3 on the road against the Seattle Seahawks.

What do you think about the Dallas Cowboys performance against the Giants?



Continue Reading

Game Notes

Sean’s Scout: Secondary Play, Improved OL Stand Out in Cowboys Win Vs. Giants

Sean Martin

Published

on

Sean's Scout: Secondary Play, Improved OL Play Stand Out in Cowboys Win Vs. Giants
(Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports)

Not many things about the Dallas Cowboys performance through two weeks has been pretty, but when they look up on Monday morning they'll be leading the NFC East at 1-1. Evening their record with a win on Sunday Night Football against the New York Giants, the Cowboys did enough in front of their home crowd to hold off a late Eli Manning comeback.

Tavon Austin's long opening touchdown would set the tone for the Cowboys on their first possession. Points would be at a premium for both teams the rest of the way, leaving the Cowboys with plenty to like about their defense and reason to be encouraged on offense.

Here are my full takeaways from the Cowboys first win of 2018.

  • There aren't enough good things to say about the play call from Scott Linehan to get the ball over the top to Tavon Austin for the Cowboys first touchdown. 

The Cowboys were able to take advantage of Giants Safety Landon Collins playing down in the box, something he's had success doing against Dallas before. I thought that trend could continue when Collins called out the Cowboys offense leading up to this game, but it was Dak Prescott getting the last laugh.

Prescott knew exactly where the ball needed to be placed once Austin beat Janoris Jenkins cleanly, giving Tavon room to run under it and find the end zone for the first time as a Cowboy.

  • It was another tough match up for rookie Left Guard Connor Williams, but this time he was up for the challenge of playing on the second level and getting out in space.

The Cowboys should be happy with Williams' steady progress at LG, as he took another step forward on Sunday night. A converted tackle from college, Williams looked much better playing on the move, which is when the entire Cowboys OL is at its best.

Not only was Williams comfortable handling more wrinkles in the play book, but he was able to play with improved power and leverage to get to the second level often. With Center Joe Looney holding his own against Damon Harrison, the Cowboys went back to their roots in grinding out this NFC East win.

  • That's a fantastic play by Jeff Heath to run across the field and tackle Evan Engram short of the line to gain on third down.

The Giants drive would continue with a fourth down conversion, but the Cowboys defense did eventually force a punt.

The Cowboys safeties were primarily called upon to play in run support in this game, a role Heath has struggled in previously. Showing off his strengths as an athletic and rangy defensive back on this play, Heath didn't get pushed up the field by Engram on his release, hunting him down after the catch in front of a fired up Dallas bench.

  • Speaking of the Cowboys safety usage in this game, it was a standout performance against Odell Beckham Jr. and the Giants receivers by Cornerbacks Byron Jones and Chidobe Awuzie. 

Both Awuzie and Jones were asked to play on an island for much of this game, and handled this as well as Kris Richard could ask for. Beckham's longest reception was for 17 yards. The Cowboys kept the Giants best play maker in front of them all night, giving them a fighting chance to slow down RB Saquon Barkley.

Barkley was able to punish the Cowboys front seven a number of times with broken tackles, but never escaped the Cowboys grasp enough for the Giants to sustain a drive until the fourth quarter.

I'm not sure if the Cowboys strong cornerback duo of Awuzie and Jones were expected to play this well as early into the season as we are, but their man coverage ability has really allowed Dallas to mix things up on defense.

  • Kris Richard's impact on the Cowboys defense went beyond the secondary play against the Giants, as the team remained aggressive in blitzing the Giants offensive line.

It sure felt good to see the Cowboys exploit the Giants weakness up front, not content with letting their front four create the only advantage on defense. Knowing what Eli Manning is capable of when sitting in the pocket, the Cowboys disrupted the Giants passer all night by relentlessly sending stunts and blitzes at him.

Damien Wilson had a bounce back game at linebacker by using his speed to pressure Manning. Getting home for a game-changing sack, Wilson knocked the ball out of Manning's hand and created a turnover for his defense.

Defensive End Taco Charlton, who had a sack from the RDE position, recovered the fumble for Dallas. It was the right side of the offensive line for the Giants that let them down, but with so much attention being given to DeMarcus Lawrence at left end, Charlton simply had a free run at Manning for his sack.

  • That's a bad miss by Dak Prescott of Rico Gathers in the end zone off the Cowboys only turnover.

Looking to put the game away after their fumble recovery, the Cowboys called the perfect play for Tight End Rico Gathers - who was active in a regular season game for the first time. The play became an example of just how far criticism of Scott Linehan should stretch, as Prescott simply didn't execute.

Gathers sold his route up the field perfectly, breaking for the back corner of the end zone and running to open space before finding the ball sail over his head. Had Prescott thrown a better ball, Gathers turns around and easily secures a touchdown.

Who knows what the internet would be like this morning if he did. Nonetheless, the Cowboys settled for a Brett Maher field goal and took a 13-0 advantage before the Giants began their climb back into the game.

The Cowboys shouldn't be discouraged from using Gathers more in the passing game, but whether or not they will depends on the numbers they need on the active roster each game day.

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭

The only NFC East team to earn a win in week two, the Cowboys have a long way to go to prove they're contenders in the division. With the Seahawks coming to town this week, the Cowboys will be reminded of how quickly things can go wrong, as Seattle's win in AT&T Stadium a year ago ended their hopes of making the playoffs.

On Sunday night, it was the Cowboys hindering the Giants chance to do just that by forcing an 0-2 start in New York. The Cowboys were impressive in their control of the game, executing a great game plan on defense while the offense started fast and finished with a physical drive in the fourth quarter.

Getting back to work after a win is always best, and such is the week ahead for the Dallas Cowboys.

Tell us what you think about "Sean’s Scout: Secondary Play, Improved OL Stand Out in Cowboys Win Vs. Giants" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



Continue Reading



Enjoy 40% commissions on officially licensed products as a FanPrint affiliate. You can even make your own, fully licensed Cowboys and player designs! Get started here

Trending