The Dallas Cowboys will face off against the Seattle Seahawks at home on Sunday in a matchup that is basically an early playoff game. Here is a preview.
The Dallas Cowboys will take on the Seattle Seahawks at home in Week 16. This is basically a playoff game as the loser of this contest has a high probability of missing the postseason.
This will not be your usual matchup between these two NFC teams, both clubs have lost several players to injury so things are bound to get interesting on Sunday.
The return of Ezekiel Elliott: Finally, the Dallas Cowboys primary playmaker has returned. Ezekiel Elliott is one of (if not) the best running back in football, and he will have an enormous effect on the Cowboys offense.
The Seahawks got absolutely man-handled by running back, Todd Gurley and the Los Angeles Rams in Week 15, so realistically this is a friendly matchup for Zeke’s return. The Seahawks are typically pretty disciplined against the run and have shown plenty of toughness and grit in the past however this matchup is particularly imposing for what is left of the “Legion of Boom”.
Specifically, because the Seahawks will be missing safety Kam Chancellor, cornerback Richard Sherman, and pass rusher Cliff Avril. Bobby Wagner is also suffering from several injuries that have limited his ability on the field.
It will be a challenge for the Seahawks to fully cover the Dallas Cowboys this weekend as they will be down their best and most physical cornerback and safety. Rookie Shaquill Griffin has been the starting right cornerback while Byron Maxwell has started on the opposite side.
Dez has not had a lot of friendly matchups this season however this could be a big game for the Cowboys best wide receiver. The return of Zeke will open up a lot of solid looks for this Cowboys offense on the field as safeties will need to man the box in an attempt to stop Elliott giving the Dallas receivers favorable one-on-one matchups.
Elliott is also one of the best pass blocking running backs in the game so Dak Prescott should have a lot of time to find an open man down the field.
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Cowboys secondary VS Doug Baldwin Seahawks wide receivers: The play of Dallas Cowboys cornerback’s Jourdan Lewis, Chidobe Awuzie, and Anthony Brown has really increased in recent weeks and it appears the team has finally got them in rhythm. This group will be going up against Doug Baldwin and a group of Seattle receivers that can cause headaches for opposing defenses.
Baldwin is the team’s number one threat and will test the top outside corners for the Dallas Cowboys. Lewis has made significant strides in recent weeks as he has become one of the better cornerbacks on this roster. After a tough outing against Michael Crabtree in Week 15, this unit looks poised to only get better as time goes on.
Cowboys pass rush VS Seahawks offensive line: The Dallas Cowboys will be missing defensive end David Irving for this matchup as he deals with a concussion. Irving’s absence has hurt Demarcus Lawrence in the sense that he is now the focus of offensive protection schemes.
This has put rookie Taco Charlton on the field more and he has steadily improved in recent weeks. Charlton is beginning to really sharpen his skill set as a pass rusher in this league.
The Seahawks offensive line is an absolute nightmare so both Lawrence and Charlton could potentially have their biggest games (from a production standpoint) of the season. The Seahawks will have a hard time stopping the Cowboys pass rush as Russell Wilson remains one of the most sacked quarterbacks in the NFL this season.
If the Seahawks want to win they will need to figure out a way to stop Dallas from getting to the quarterback. Wilson is gifted at moving in and out of the pocket and that should help him buy some time however that may not be enough at the end of the day to stop Dallas from putting some pressure on Wilson and the Seahawks offense.
All about the playoffs: This game is the culmination of a season’s worth of waiting for the Dallas Cowboys. Waiting for the Ezekiel Elliott saga to be over, waiting for injuries to heal up, waiting for this offense to be complete, waiting for the pass rush and the secondary to come together; well the wait is finally over.
The Cowboys will enter Sunday’s matchup looking to bet it all as a win here would do a lot for their playoff hopes. For Seattle, this has been a season full of turmoil, infighting, and change.
The roots of what the Seahawks stand for is still there, hard-hitting defense, however, this season injuries have hindered their ability to do that. In a game that seemingly pits two teams heading in opposite directions against one another, there will be a lot of big plays and hard hits when Sunday rolls around.