The Dallas Cowboys have their first NFC East showdown of the 2021 season on Monday night when the Philadelphia Eagles come to AT&T Stadium. At 1-1, the Cowboys are riding a ton of momentum after taking the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers down to the last play in a two-point loss and winning a hard-fought battle with the Los Angeles Chargers by three.
This will be the Cowboys’ home opener for the 2021 season. Dallas has won three consecutive games at home against the Eagles, and it’s been fueled offensively by two players, Ezekiel Elliott and Amari Cooper.
Elliott has amassed 789 rushing yards in eight career games (98.6 yards per game) against the Eagles. While his 91 yards per game in Philadelphia is impressive, he’s been even better against the Cowboys’ biggest rival at home.
Elliott’s first battle played against the Eagles at AT&T Stadium came in the middle of an 11-game win streak for the Cowboys in his rookie season. Elliott picked 96 yards in a game the Cowboys won in overtime 29-23. He’s gained 113, 111, and 105 yards in his last three which give him an average of 106 yards per game on 5.9 yards per rush for his career against the Eagles at home.
The Cowboys are 4-0 at home when Elliott plays against the Eagles with the only loss coming in 2017 when he was serving a six-game suspension.
Cooper’s first home game in this rivalry back in 2018 is one he’ll never forget. He hauled in 10 receptions for a then career-high 217 yards (had 226 yards vs Packers in 2019) and three touchdowns which included the game-winning score in overtime. He caught all five of his targets for 106 yards against the Eagles at home in 2019 added another 121 on four receptions last season.
This means Cooper averages 148 yards and a touchdown on six receptions every time the Eagles are the opposing team in Arlington. It might be slightly tougher this time around for Cooper to have a big game as he’s playing with a cracked rib. However, he’s played with injuries before and played well during his time in Dallas.
The winner of Cowboys-Eagles will take early control in the NFC East which gives the game even more significance. Elliott spoke early in the week about what the rivalry with the Eagles means and was candid in his personal feelings about them.
“It means a lot,” Elliott said. “I mean definitely probably our biggest rival, especially since I’ve been here. Probably the team I don’t like the most. But Philly week is always fun. I know AT&T is going to be electric Monday night.”
The Cowboys want to continue their home winning streak against the Eagles more than anything but it’ll be interesting to see if it continues to be driven by Elliott and Cooper offensively like it has for the last three seasons.