Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by MRich on Sun Nov 27, 2016 8:11 pm

Vikings are fighting for their playoff lives (NFL.com has them right now the projected 8th seed in the NFC, so they're classified as "in the hunt").

Dallas is 10-1 and on a hot streak. Minnesota is 1-4 in their last five games.

This is another Thursday Night "Color Rush" game.

Dallas is 4th offensively in yards per game, with 407.6. Minnesota is 32nd at 294.9. Dallas is 3rd in the NFL in PPG, at 28.7, Minnesota is 24th at 19.8.

Defensively, Dallas is 21st in yards allowed, at 362.2, while Minnesota is 3rd at 307. Dallas is 8th in Points Allowed with 19.4, while Minnesota is 2nd at 17.5.

So Minnesota's record seems a little deceiving to me. This will be a tough game, I think. But I do believe, in the end Dallas will pull it off and be 11-1 when the final whistle sounds.
avatar
MRich

Join date : 2016-08-16
Posts : 134

Back to top Go down

Re: Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by Cowboy1959 on Tue Nov 29, 2016 12:08 am


I have not yet had a chance to watch the Thanksgiving game very closely yet, as we had a house full of guests and I was fully into my hosting duties to the point where I could only periodically monitor the action in Dallas. Nevertheless, I came away with some thoughts based on the level of detail I was able to observe:

1.  This team does not have a championship defense.  Its performance against above average QBs is scary to watch.  The defense has given up an average of 440 passing yards per game in the past 3 weeks, and is  starting to get lit up with regularity.  Between the injuries to the secondary and the chronically anemic pass rush, this unit is getting beaten early and often in the passing game.  Anthony Brown had a particularly inept evening, and there has to be some concern that he's hitting the infamous "rookie wall" just as the season is getting down to its climax.  With Eli Manning and the Giants' outstanding receiving corps quickly coming up, the Cowboys will need to get their house in order if they don't want to be the second-best 13-3 team in their division.  Beyond that, the playoffs are going to feature nothing but good passing attacks that will take this team to the limit.  We all remember where and how this team fell short in 2014, and it's not beyond imagining that their inability to stop the opposing passing game will be their Achilles' heel again.  I expect the Cowboys to address this in the offseason, but with a magical season going on right now you don't want to look back on what might have been, if only...

2.  In spite of the big yards given up, especially in the 4th quarter, it never felt to me that the Redskins were going to be able to take control of the game.  That's a credit to both the Cowboys' defense (and the Redskins' incompetence) in the red zone and, even more, to their magnificent offensive machine that just smothers the life out of the other team.  I'm not sure when--or even if--I've seen an offense run as smoothly, efficiently, and productively as this one.  It's amazing to watch.

3.  The key to beating the Cowboys seems obvious:  keep their offense off the field and/or stop them from scoring, then expose their defense.  A team with a combination of a tough defense and a strong passing game will be able to take the Cowboys down.  There may not be many teams out there that can boast of those two elements, but there's almost certainly going to be one standing in the way of the Cowboys and the Super Bowl:  Seattle.  Right now there would be every reason to fear that team in the playoffs.  They could well be the Kryptonite to the Cowboys' super season.

I also wouldn't sleep on the Giants.  They spent $200 million in free agent dollars on their defense for exactly this kind of ability.  And while the Giants are a streaky team, right now they're on the hot side. The Giants have the guys on both sides of the ball that match up best with this Cowboys team, so it's not far-fetched to think that they could be a tough out in a playoff game.

4.  The Cowboys' red zone defense has been pretty good, but the problem with "bend-but-don't-break" defenses is that, inevitably, they do break at some point.  The question is whether it'll happen in a win-or-go-home situation.  The Cowboys need to spend the rest of this season getting the defense as finely honed as possible.  And they're going to need to figure out how to get sacks and turnovers, because without that component of the defensive game the Cowboys will not win too many battles on that side of the ball.

5.  It's not reasonable--or fair--to expect the offense to bail out the defense week in and week out.  I personally don't believe that the defensive talent is below par, but I think it's a unit that's missing one or two difference makers--the big play guys that give you those 2 or 3 plays a game each that turn the tide.  That's going to have to be addressed next Spring, but until then the Cowboys have important games to play and they need to find someone in that locker room who can take the team on his shoulders.  It seems that Cedric Benson is starting to get some traction, so maybe things will continue to develop over the next few weeks.  In any case, we need some guys to step up.

6.  Of course, there is no team in the league who's solid everywhere in this watered-down era of parity, and the Cowboys are at least as well-situated as anyone else.  But if you're looking for reasons why the Cowboys can't/won't win the Super Bowl, you don't have to look very far.  This team will go as far as its offense can take it, but it sure would be nice if the defense can at least hold up their part of the offense-defense-special teams triad.  In fact, it would be more than nice--it's a necessity.

All that said, I would expect this team to be able to knock off the Vikings and continue their winning streak. Sam Bradford is NOT an above average QB, and I don't expect him to light up the defense.  The Vikings have a good defense, but the Cowboys have made a living off of good defenses over the past few weeks and I don't think the Vikings have the other dimension they need to win.

Frankly, I will be happy to get on the other side of this game, because the Cowboys will get a 10-day cushion before that all-important matchup with the Giants.  That's when the playoffs begin in my mind, so all of the rest of this has been the long prologue.  It's been fun and terrific to watch, but we'll soon be entering crunch time and this team needs to find the next level.


avatar
Cowboy1959

Join date : 2016-08-16
Posts : 84

Back to top Go down

Re: Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by lgkehoe on Wed Nov 30, 2016 12:16 pm

Minnesota sustains on special teams and defensive scores. In 4 of 6 wins, the defense or special teams have contributed to the Vikings scoring.

If the Cowboys can play the mistake-free football they have been playing, they should come away with the win. The crowd at Minny's new stadium is going to do what it can to prevent that, so I hope Dak and the line are prepared. I have no reason to believe will not be.

I still have this lingering (but fading) mistrust of this coaching staff's propensity to out think itself. Ghosts of the past I hope. If the Cowboys run the ball like they are supposed to...over and over, their strength will outlast Minnesota's defensive front.

Minnesota is not a running threat, and that is one area in which the Cowboys have done well. Neither Asiata nor McKinnon offer big play potential. And, I expect our pass rush to get a boost from playing against what many in Minnesota believe is the worst pass protecting line in Vikings history. DeLaw has been coming on strong as has Irving. 

This game will be similar to the Ravens game. I expect a slow start, as the chess match begins. But as the game wears on, the Cowboys will assert their superiority, and dominate late. 

Cowboys win, 24-10.
avatar
lgkehoe

Join date : 2016-08-22
Posts : 110

Back to top Go down

Re: Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by lgkehoe on Wed Nov 30, 2016 12:18 pm

Charles Tapper may be available for the regular season stretch and the post season. That could be the boost the defense needs, '59. I know that's a lot of could and if, but it's all we got.
avatar
lgkehoe

Join date : 2016-08-22
Posts : 110

Back to top Go down

Re: Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by caddy4bp on Wed Nov 30, 2016 5:08 pm

Six weeks ago, I looked at this as a tough game. Now, I don't. They don't have a running game as several have mentioned. Bradford isn't much of a QB, IMO. He's been completing a high percentage of passes but most are inside of 10 yards of the LOS. That can change with our lack of pass rush.

They've not been particularly good against the run this year and well, I think we know what we have in the running game. MN is my brothers favorite team, so I've watched them pretty closely thru the season. 1st & 2nd possessions of the game is the time to feast on their D, so keep that in mind. As LG noted their W's have been usually with a special teams or defensive score, so that's something to keep an eye on.

That being said this is a make or break game for them. Their season is basically over if they lose to us, so expect a great effort from them if they want to fight another day. IMO, we win the game handily and by that I mean a game that's never in doubt, but not one where we win by 20.

As 59' mentioned, our defense is a weak link, a season ending weak link. They got Zeke to give the offense and Romo the opportunity to score at will and control the ball. Dak's done very well, but in the playoffs we'll need high 30's if not 40's to win in January. My concern is Atlanta if they get in. No defense but you can't blink or they'll run the Boys off the field like they did last year in the 2nd half.

caddy4bp

Join date : 2016-08-18
Posts : 97
Age : 64

Back to top Go down

Re: Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by lgkehoe on Thu Dec 08, 2016 12:41 pm

Who would've thought, special teams won this one...Ours!

But those coaches did get too cute, as evidenced by the empty spread set on the second play of the game after the first play was a gash up the middle for 11 yards! Too much passing in this one (and maybe too much rushing attempts outside). And what was with all the blitzes? Bradford and their new quick-release offense was not the time to spare a player from the secondary???

Eh, what do I know. I just know I barely recognized this team against Minny based on the game plan.

I am going to chalk up all the other mistakes to a tired team who just played their third game in twelve days. Plus, those key penalties were very suspect calls.
avatar
lgkehoe

Join date : 2016-08-22
Posts : 110

Back to top Go down

Re: Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by caddy4bp on Thu Dec 08, 2016 2:09 pm

The Cowboys held them to very little offensively. What hurt us all night was penalties killing off drives and several nice chunk plays. They took points off the board. It made this game a real struggle to pull out. We may not have won if not for that special teams play. Which was aided by the returner trying to make a play that didn't need to be made inside their own 10.

Thought we made this game closer than it needed to be and contrary to my expectations.

caddy4bp

Join date : 2016-08-18
Posts : 97
Age : 64

Back to top Go down

Re: Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by lgkehoe on Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:01 pm

My reference to what the Vikings offense was able to accomplish was about their 21 first downs, 69 plays and 33:17 TOP. The Vikings' offense was never going to put up points, but the Cowboys offense struggled to find a rhythm. And what has contributed the Cowboys second half dominance all season has been the gassed defenses being on the field for so long. Against the Vikings, this actually happened to the Cowboys! And the Vikings defense was able to get some momentum in the second half because of it.

This game should never have been as close as it was.
avatar
lgkehoe

Join date : 2016-08-22
Posts : 110

Back to top Go down

Re: Your take on the 10-1 Cowboys vs the Vikings this week...

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum