Alright, alright, alright! It’s week 17. It’s the last week of the NFL regular season and, therefore, the last week of so-called “meaningless” games for the Cowboys. Tomorrow, they walk into Lincoln Financial Field the #1 seed in the NFC and Champions of the NFC East. And guess what? There is nothing the Philadelphia Eagles can do about it!
You can breathe knowing that much, at least.
The Cowboys have been on a tear this season, winning 11 in a row and 13 in all; it’s almost been too exciting to be a fan this year. But let’s just breathe now. Let’s absorb 13-2 for a minute. Don’t push a fairly meaningless stat and would-be team record of 14 regular season wins on these ‘Boys, just breathe and soak it in.
The Dallas Cowboys have done exactly what they needed to do up until this point, and now it’s all about the playoffs.
The biggest story this week has been about the team’s decision at quarterback.
Jason Garrett talked this week about history and how teams letting off the gas in a week like this tend to not go into the playoffs the same. Reports have surfaced about Tony Romo possibly playing tomorrow, and Mark Sanchez (forever known here as Butt Fumble… sorry, Mark) will be active, hinting that he, too, shall see some playing time.
And still, all of that is about someone else. It’s about Dak Prescott. To let the rookie risk injury during a meaningless game against a fierce division rival could spell disaster for the Cowboys. To allow momentum and synchronicity to evaporate ahead of a bye could also spell disaster for the Cowboys.
What to do, what to do.
I like to think they’ll approach this game no differently than any other, how they approached a Lions game in which they outscored Detroit 2:1. Playing to win is about more than the final score and records. But let’s see what some of our guys at Inside The Star think.
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Kevin Brady | @Kevinbrady88
This game is nearly impossible to predict as the Dallas Cowboys will rest many banged up starters and the Philadelphia Eagles will surely go all out to win. Still, I think the Cowboys pull away with this one.
Most of their defense from the past few weeks will be active, and their offense will be able to do just enough to win.
Cowboys 27 – Eagles 21
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Mauricio Rodriguez | @PepoR99
It pains me to pick against the Cowboys, but I don’t expect to see a lot of Dak Prescott or Tony Romo.
Philly is at home and they’ll want the win, while the Cowboys just want to rest most of the starters.
Mark Sanchez time.
Cowboys 17 – Eagles 21
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Brian Martin | @Bmart0204
As much as I want to see the Dallas Cowboys set a franchise record with the most wins in a season (14), I just don’t see it happening this week. Not on the road against the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Cowboys simply have too many injuries on both sides of the ball, and there’s really no reason to risk some of their key players to injury in what looks to be a meaningless game.
The organization has to be thinking about the playoffs now, and keeping their team as healthy as possible.
Cowboys 13 – Eagles 21
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Sean Martin | @ShoreSportsNJ
Well, it’s week 17, and the Cowboys’ regular season finale is a meaningless game in enemy territory against Philadelphia.
The Cowboys will only lose by one score in the last time we see them before the Divisional Playoffs, but the Eagles defense will put them over the top against a Cowboys offense that’ll look nothing like what we’re used to for much of the day.
Cowboys lose, and win.
Cowboys 21 – Eagles 28
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Bryson Treece | @BrysonTreece
Jason Garrett sounded quite convincing in talking about how he doesn’t want to make the mistake history has proven to be a mistake time and time again, but I’ve been lied to before. And after Carr and Mariota went down last week, this is probably feeling a bit like a game of Russian Roulette to continue putting Dak Prescott under center.
But the defense has seemed to find something these last two weeks, and against better teams than the Eagles, no less. So while the offense may see numbers 20, 3 and/or 9 more, the defense is still figuring things out, and they’ll likely press hard all afternoon.
Gotta go with momentum and records here, and coach Garrett.
Cowboys 24 – Eagles 20
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This game is about as unpredictable as they come since we don’t even know if the Cowboys’ game plan is to win, but regardless, it’ll be fun to watch. At the end of the day, the Cowboys are still on top. And the Eagles, even if they win tomorrow, are most definitely not.
So, to close out what should be the last article from us in 2016…