The Cowboys are on the final stretch and there’s a lot on the line. The Cowboys missed on the chance for the NFC East title and a first-round bye.
We’re going to find out a lot about our team against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Bucs are rolling and need to keep winning to stay in the hunt for the NFC South title or wild card.
For Dallas, after their week 1 loss to the Giants they reeled off 11 consecutive victories, so now it is time to get the winning streak going again.
Did the Cowboys need to lose to refocus? Possibly, and we’re going to find out on Sunday Night.
Here’s how we beat the Bucs:
- Shove Ezekiel Elliott down their throat. The Bucs have the #21 run defense, and the Cowboys need to expose that. If something stalls in the passing game, then keep running the ball. Eventually, there will be a game where the Cowboys will need to put the game on Zeke’s shoulder. He can carry load, so feed him.
- Keep Lance Dunbar off the field. I do not want to see him in the return game or in the backfield. We activated Darren McFadden, a more superior back, so he needs to get Dunbar’s playing time. Period.
- Sometimes I have a feeling about a player, last week it was Sean Lee and he ended up with a Cowboys tackling record. This week I think we’ll see a solid game from Maliek Collins.
- Change up 1st down play calls. We’ve seen the Cowboys be stubborn and run the ball on every 1st down, and in recent weeks it has been detrimental. If we are not dominating the line of scrimmage, then pass it.
- Dove tailing from above, the Cowboys need to get Cole Beasley going. When the Cowboys were rolling on offense, Beasley was a big target for Dak and consistent. We need to get back to Beasley.
- Special teams needs to wake up. Last week was an atrocious outing. I cannot count how many times we were pinned inside the 15-1o yard line. Cover your guy.
- Lucky Whitehead needs to redeem himself, and I mean big plays. We need a return TD or some splash plays in the return game from Whitehead. Do not come into this game and fumble and bumble the ball.
- Down and distance. The Cowboys have had a hard time getting into short distances and it has put them in a bind. If we can convert our 3rd downs we’re in business. Garrett eluded to looking into doing a few things differently offensively, so we’ll see if those come to fruition in this game.
- No turnovers by our offense, but force turnovers and convert into points. Last week the offense kept the defense hanging. The defense forced turnovers and the offense did nothing with them.
Squash the ever present QB chatter
What I do not want to see is a lackluster performance from the offense, especially in a losing effort. The flood gates for Tony Romo’s return will open up and could force Garrett to make a change. I would not agree with it. Dak Prescott is the future, he needs all this experience. Winning 11 games for a rookie QB is a phenomenal feat against some tough defenses along the way.
Must win game
It’s cliche, but this is a must win game for several reasons. NFC East Title on the line, but more importantly, the mental state of the team. A second straight loss this late in the season could be a bad sign.