Week 11 Tale Of The Tape: Philadelphia Eagles At Dallas Cowboys
- QuarterbackThe Eagles have been the best and most consistent team in the league through Week 10, and that means they are in great shape for the second half of the season. However, they don’t give awards for the first half, and Carson Wentz will have to get even better from this point forward. Wentz has 23 TD passes and is an outstanding leaderThe Cowboys are coming off a one-sided loss to the Falcons in their first game without Ezekiel Elliott, but head coach Jason Garrett has to make sure that quarterback Dak Prescott is not worried about that game and is able to move forward. Prescott was sacked eight times, but he is smart, tough and excels at finding the soft spot in the defense.
- OffenseThe Eagles have the fourth-ranked offense this season, and they have a couple of game-changing weapons in RB LeGarrette Blount and WR Alshon Jeffery. Blount is the best short-yardage back in the league and he is much more than that. Jeffery knows how to use his long arms and size to wall off defenders. Zach Ertz (hamstring) should be ready here and he has caught 43-528-6.The Cowboys are trying to adjust to the suspension of Elliott, and they were not able to block for Prescott in the passing game in the Week 10 loss to the Falcons. The offensive line must come up with a much better effort and give Alfred Morris a chance to run the ball. Wideout Dez Bryant needs to come through with a top effort and he should get support from TE Jason Witten.
- DefenseThe Eagles don’t have superstars on the defensive side, but this unit has come together and done a consistent job since the start of the season. The Eagles are a hard-hitting unit that ranks 11th in yards allowed. Linebackers Nigel Bradham and Mychal Kendricks have combined for 97 tackles, while DE Brandon Graham has a team-high 5.0 sacks.The Cowboys got pushed around quite a bit by the Falcons in Week 10, as they allowed 336 yards and 27 points. The Cowboys are a middle-of-the-pack defense as evidenced by the status as the No. 16 unit in the league, but they have a couple of dominating pass rushers in Demarcus Lawrence (11.5 sacks) and David Irving (6.0 sacks). Both players need to punish Wentz if the Cowboys are going to secure the win.
- Special TeamsThe Eagles have been one of the most consistent teams in this area, and return specialist Kenjon Barner does an excellent job of finding the openings. Rookie PK Jake Elliott has made 17-of-20 FGs and has the leg strength to hit long kicks. Donnie Jones is a fine punter.The Cowboys are quite competitive on special teams, and they are hoping that Ryan Switzer can break a long return or two in the second half of the season. PK Mike Nugent has made 4-of-6 FG attempts since filling in for the injured Dan Bailey.
The Eagles are coming off the bye and they have played superb football. While the Cowboys won’t have Elliott, they need this game more than the Eagles, and they can win this game if they keep it close in the first half. Look for the Cowboys to play strong, conservative game.