Welcome to this week's edition of Martin's 5!
After completely manhandling the Cincinnati Bengals last week, the Dallas Cowboys have a tough matchup against the Green Bay Packers on the road.
This isn't the same dominant Packers team we have seen in the past, so it is definitely a winnable game for the Cowboys if things go as planned and they continue to play the way they have been playing.
If you are new to reading my weekly edition of Martin's 5 or maybe you've forgotten, let me explain that this is a space that I use to share the things that I'm wondering each week. They can just be things that are stuck in my head or things I'm wondering heading into the weekly matchup for the Cowboys.
Below are my five weekly wonders, and trust me it wasn't difficult to do this week as it has in weeks past.
One: The Dallas Cowboys have a tough game on the road against the Green Bay Packers this week. If Dak Prescott can come away with a victory at Lambeau Field, I wonder if he remains the starting quarterback even once Tony Romo is back to 100%? I firmly believe that Tony Romo is the better of the two QB's at this point and gives the Cowboys best chance to win. But, I just don't know if I can sit Prescott if he is on a five-game winning streak. When your team is on a hot streak, how can you justify making a change to arguably the most important position in the NFL. I'm just glad I'm not the one that is going to have to make this decision. Whatever way the Cowboys decided to go will be deeply scrutinized.
Two: Speaking of Tony Romo, I wonder if he will actually be able to return to the field after the Cowboys Week 7 bye week? As things stand now, it looks as if Romo is on schedule to return Week 8. Of course, he hasn't really started throwing very much or practicing. Once that happens it will be interesting to see if he has any kind of setback. When dealing with back injuries you have to take the cautious approach, especially for someone like Romo who has already had back problems in his playing career. I personally wouldn't be in a hurry to put Romo back on the field, especially if I have any kind of concerns about his health. Dak Prescott allows the organization to take things slowly and make sure Romo isn't being rushed back.
Three: I wonder if Ezekiel Elliott can continue his streak of 100+ rushing yard games this week against the Green Bay Packers? Through the first five weeks of the 2016 season, the Dallas Cowboys have the best rushing attack in the NFL. The Green Bay Packers have one of the best, if not the best, run defenses in the NFL. This is a strength against strength matchup and the winner will probably go a long ways in determining the outcome of this game. The Cowboys offensive line makes all the difference. They completely manhandled the Cincinnati Bengals defensive front, and I think they could do the same against the Packers. I could easily see Elliott hitting that 100 yard rushing mark again this week.
Four: The Dallas Cowboys secondary has been one of the strengths of the defense, but I wonder if Morris Claiborne and company can continue to impress against a tough group of Green Bay wide receivers? Quarterback Aaron Rodgers and his wide receivers have been among the best in the NFL for the past several years and will be a tough test for the Dallas Cowboys secondary. The Packers like to use three and four wide receiver sets on offense, so that will definitely put pressure on the secondary to be at their best. Claiborne in particular has been playing lights out, but he will have to step up his game this week as well everyone else on the backend of the Cowboys defense.
Five: The pass rush for the Dallas Cowboys defense was much improved last week against the Cincinnati Bengals. I wonder if that will carry over this week so they can continue to harass Aaron Rodgers just like they did Andy Dalton? Now, I don't expect the Cowboys defense to rack up four QB sacks against the Packers, but applying pressure to Aaron Rodgers throughout the ball game will help keep the secondary from having to cover the Packers WRs for an extended period of time. DeMarcus Lawrence added a little juice to the pass rush last week and will have to do the same this week. The more pressure they can get on Rogers the better, but it will be difficult against the Packers offensive line, who are among the best in pass protection.
Well, that does it for this week's edition of Martin's 5. Do you have anything on your mind that you would like to share?
Please feel free to take advantage of the comment section below to share any of your thoughts or opinions.
BREAKING: Dallas Cowboys Sign Free Agent Safety George Iloka
The Dallas Cowboys have reached a one-year agreement with Safety George Iloka, according to ESPN's Todd Archer. Iloka spent 2018 with the Vikings after six years with the Bengals.
He's started 79 of his 99 career games since being a fifth-round pick by Cincinnati in 2012. Iloka turns 29 years old next week.
The Cowboys have agreed to a one-year deal with safety George Iloka, according to a source. Iloka met with the Cowboys on Friday and was the third safety to meet with the club during the week along with Clayton Geathers and Eric Berry. The Cowboys have... https://t.co/JB5nJLWepc
This isn't the safety that most Cowboys fans wanted. After over a year of pining for Earl Thomas, sights turned to Eric Berry after his free agent visit in Dallas last week.
However, it makes sense that Iloka would be attractive to the Cowboys. At 6'4" and 225 lbs, he fits the physical mold of what Defensive Backs Coach Kris Richard likes in his players. He also is younger than than Berry and Thomas without the same recent injury issues.
Iloka becomes one of many Boise St. products on Dallas' roster, joining Tyrone Crawford, DeMarcus Lawrence, Leighton Vander Esch, and others. He entered the league with college teammates Crawford and Kellen Moore, the Cowboys' new offensive coordinator, in 2012.
We'll have to wait and see how George Iloka fits into the current mix at safety with Jeff Heath and Xavier Woods. He spent most of 2018 as a backup with Minnesota, but Dallas will likely give him a chance to start.
BREAKING: Cowboys Sign Ex-Packers WR Randall Cobb
According to multiple sources, the Dallas Cowboys have signed former Green Bay Packers Wide Receiver Randall Cobb to a one-year deal to help bolster their depth at the WR position and potentially become Cole Beasley's replacement.
Cowboys are giving former Packers' WR Randall Cobb a one-year, $5 million deal, per source. https://t.co/8KWFPjSP8T
The Dallas Cowboys met with Randall Cobb earlier this week, but he eventually left Dallas without a contract. He must've had a change of heart or just needed time to ponder the Cowboys offer, but regardless of what transpired in that short time he is now part of America's Team.
During his time with the Packers, Cobb accumulated 470 receptions for 5,524 receiving yards and 41 touchdowns. The eight-year veteran will now be expected to replace some of Cole Beasley's production out of the slot for the Dallas Cowboys.
After years of watching Beasley as the Cowboys slot WR, it will be really interesting to see Randall Cobb in that role. He's not as quick twitched as No. 11, but can be just as dangerous due to his ability to be more of a down the field receiver. He also brings added value in the return game and could compete with Tavon Austin to become the return specialist.
This could mean the Cowboys forgo drafting a wide receiver early in the 2019 NFL Draft, but I wouldn't put it past them. Regardless of what happens, this is an excellent addition.
Welcome to Cowboys Nation Randall Cobb!
REPORT: Dallas Cowboys Re-sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur
L.P. Ladouceur is returning for his 15th season as the Cowboys' long snapper. The veteran free agent was re-signed by Dalals today to a one-year deal.
Thanks to Jason Witten's one-year sabbatical with Monday Night Football, Ladouceur has now been with the Cowboys for more consecutive seasons than any current player. He just turned 38 last week, but Louis-Philippe remains one of the top long snappers in football.
The Cowboys have signed long-snapper L.P. Ladouceur to a one-year deal worth $1.03 million and $90,000 in bonus money, but he will count $735,000 against the cap. This will be Ladouceur's 15th season with the Cowboys, tying Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Mark... https://t.co/2iDsi6RX7e
Retaining Ladouceur is an underrated move for the Cowboys given their situation at kicker.
Brett Maher was only 80% accurate overall on field goals last year. The team could be considering an upgrade in free agency.
Whether they bring Maher back or try someone new, having a long snapper with Ladouceur's performance perfection will make things much easier for them.
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