Game Overview ::
By mike johnson >>
- Dallas narrowly escaped with a win last week against a lowly Texans team that they appeared to overlook and be ill-prepared for.
- Jacksonville appears to be turning a corner and Trevor Lawrence is starting to play like the star quarterback he was thought to be when he entered the league.
- The Dallas defense, particularly their secondary, is battling a plethora of injuries right now.
- The Cowboys offense continues to hum, scoring at least 27 points in all six games since Dak Prescott returned from injury.
How dallas Will Try To Win ::
The Cowboys offense has been wildly efficient since Dak Prescott’s return from injury, scoring 27 or more points in every game and averaging 37.7 points during that stretch. While Dak’s presence has spurred this offensive explosion, the Cowboys offense works first and foremost through their dynamic duo of running backs. During that six game stretch, Dallas running backs have combined for touchdown counts of 3, 1, 4, 1, 4, and 3. Likewise, Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard have combined for opportunity counts of 37, 36, 35, and 35 since Elliott’s return from injury in Week 11. Elliott works as more of a “grinder” and is the preferred short yardage back, while Pollard is kept fresh and used in a more explosive role and featured a bit more in the passing game, with three games of 5+ targets in his last six appearances. In the passing game, the Cowboys have been very efficient with the exception of last week’s multi-interception game from Dak Prescott. CeeDee Lamb, Michael Gallup, and Dalton Schultz are all healthy and see the majority of the targets, with their limitations mainly coming from a lack of volume due to the Cowboys building large leads most weeks.
This week, Dallas travels to face a Jacksonville team with an emerging offense and a beatable defense. The Jaguars are a middling run defense and a bottom-5 pass defense by most metrics. The Cowboys are a very good team that has an identity, so it is unlikely they change that identity for a single week like this one, especially when it’s not like Jacksonville is unbeatable on the ground. However, there is a spiked possibility of big plays from the Cowboys as the Jaguars are likely to have to give extra attention to the running game if they want to slow them down. Derrick Henry was destroying this defense in the first half last week before the game script turned and the Jaguars took control of the game, forcing the Titans away from him. The Titans did not have the personnel to fire back and struggled when they became one-dimensional. However, the balanced nature of the Cowboys offense should make them very difficult for the Jaguars to slow down, and we should expect the Dallas offense to keep humming this week as they have been.