The Dallas Cowboys will begin a tough run of games this week in Houston, facing the Texans on Sunday Night Football. Over the next three weeks, Dallas will be put the test as they try to stay above .500 before their Week 8 bye.
There’s some positive momentum with the Cowboys coming off last week’s victory over the Detroit Lions. Not only did Dallas get to 2-2, but Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott had their best games so far this season.
Last week, I mentioned how the difference between 2-2 and 1-3 feels like a lot more than just one game. One could make the same statement about being 3-2 or 2-3 after Sunday, especially given the two games that come after the Texans.
In Week 6, Dallas returns home to host the 3-1 Jacksonville Jaguars. The following week, the Cowboys go on the road for their 2018 meeting with Washington.
So over these next three games, that’s two on the road against opponents who will treat it like their personal Super Bowl. The one home game is against one of the best teams in the league right now.
Even though Houston is currently 1-3, just getting their first win of 2018 last week, it would be a mistake to underestimate them. They should still give the Cowboys all they can handle.
In their three losses, Houston never lost by more than a touchdown. Their first two were road games against the Patriots (27-20) and divisional-rival Titans (20-17).
Their worst loss, by far, was at home to the Giants. But that still was just a 27-22 score.
Deshaun Watson has thrown over 300 yards in his last three games. Over the last two weeks, he’s had 385 and 375 passing yards each week. Still less than a year removed from ACL surgery, the 2017 rookie sensation appears to finding his rhythm again.
The Texans will bring a hot offense and renewed confidence to this week’s game, plus the ever-intense desire to beat their in-state rival. These games always mean more to Houston than Dallas.
And again, this will probably be the easiest of the three games Dallas has ahead.
Next week, Jaguars’ cornerback Jalen Ramsey will make sure there is plenty of hype for his first meeting with the Cowboys. The corner is still bitter about not being drafted by Dallas in 2016, and he’s been very vocal about it.
From there we get the Redskins and everything comes with the rivalry. It could even be for the division lead by that point, with Washington currently ahead of Dallas and Philadelphia by just half a game.
The Cowboys get their bye week after all of this, and it’d be great to see them at 5-2 or at least 4-3 going in. But clearly, they’re going to have to put in some work to get there.