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Somethings Gotta Give As Cowboys Host Lions

Kitna will be suiting up for the Cowboys on Sunday against his former team

Detroit Lions (2-7) @ Dallas Cowboys (2-7)
Where: Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, TX
When: Sunday – 1:00 pm EST
Media: Fox

Everyone knows that it is tough to win on the road in the NFL. A feat that is even harder for teams that are struggling. This weeks matchup is a bit of an anomaly where the “environment” is concerned. Take the Detroit Lions, only 2 years removed from the awful 0-16 season. They have not won a road game since 2007. Strangely, Cowboys quarterback Jon Kitna, and wideout Roy Williams, were apart of that last road win, both playing for the Lions at the time. But, while the Lions have struggled on the road, the Cowboys have been horrible at home this season going 0-4. This week something has to give. Either the Lions will get their first road win in 3 plus seasons or the Cowboys will get their first home win of the season.

The Cowboys are coming off their best game of the season. Interim head coach Jason Garrett has the team buying into his message and playing hard. It is hard to argue that they haven’t turned a small corner this season. While the playoffs are likely a pipe dream, unless the Cowboys can run the table, they are still playing for jobs and ultimately their next head coach, wether that be Garrett or someone else.

For the Cowboys to continue winning they will have to continue to do what they did last week. While they didn’t register a sack on Eli Manning, they were applying a lot of pressure to the Giants QB. The Lions are without franchise quarterback Matthew Stafford and will instead turn to journeyman Shaun Hill to lead them. If the Cowboys can get pressure it will be a long day for Hill. The key for the Cowboys defense will be their secondary. Going against the likes of Calvin Johnson and Nate Burleson will not be an easy task for a unit that is constantly getting torched this season, and could be without Terrance Newman who has a sore ankle and ribs. Newman is listed as questionable for the game. Defensive co-ordinator Paul Pasqualoni has gotten the attention of the troops and will have a tough time shutting down Detroit’s top wideouts. Like usual, the Cowboys will also have to stop the run. Rookie running Back Jahvid Best has been solid this year. He has been struggling with a turf toe injury that has slowed him some, but he is still a dangerous runner. Depth is shallow behind best, with 3rd year man Kevin Smith lost due to injury. The Cowboys will still have to work hard to shut down Detroit’s offense.

The Cowboys themselves have a pretty explosive offense and it starts with the offensive line. Last week we saw what Jon Kitna can do behind a line that gives him some time to throw the ball. Kitna had his best game as a Cowboy throwing for over 300 yards and 3 touchdowns. Rookie WR Dez Bryant has really come on in the last couple of weeks and is a threat every time he touches the ball. The key will be blocking the Lions front seven led by rookie Ndamukong Suh. Suh has 6.5 sacks from his defensive tackle position and is a disruptive force with his high motor and good strength. The Cowboys will have to game plan a way to neutralize his presence up front. One of the ways to get a good pass rush off balance is to run the ball. The Cowboys put up over 100 yards rushing last week against a solid Giants front, that will be the key again this week. Look for lots of Felix Jones and Marion Barber early to set the tone for the game.

People might see the Lions as a pushover. Granted, a loss to the winless Bills last week has clouded the Lions future, but the Cowboys best not underestimate this young team. If they play well the will push the Cowboys. Just ask the Giants who were pushed by the Lions at home a couple of weeks ago.

My Call: Dallas 31-17.

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One Response to “Somethings Gotta Give As Cowboys Host Lions”

  1. Toney Hoek says:

    I’ve always been a fan of their designs, they keep it simple and classy and don’t overdo the whole thing

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