Aug 23, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals defensive back Nate Clements (22) and offensive coordinator Mike Zimmer shake hands before the game against the Green Bay Packers at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Week 14 Staff Picks & Predictions: Cowboys vs. Bengals (Part One)

Every week of the NFL regular season, we ask all of The Landry Hat writers and contributors to submit their picks and predictions for the upcoming Dallas Cowboy game. This week, we asked our experts for their predictions for Sunday’s game between our Cowboys and the Cincinnati Bengals.

Steven Mullenax, Editor & Head Writer: The Bengals are clicking on all cylinders, winning their last four games. BenJarvus Green-Ellis has recorded 100+ rushing  yards in each of the last three. Expect  that trend to continue against an injury-stricken Dallas defense who will be soft in the middle without DT Jay Ratliff. And Bengals’ defensive coordinator, Mike Zimmer, has had the Cowboys number in the  past. Unless Romo and  company can explode offensively, I see this one being fairly one-sided. Cowboys 17, Bengals 31.

Mike Burke, Staff Writer – The Bengals are 3-3 at home, showing that they are far from the invincible jungle cats that most experts this week will predict them to be against the up and down Cowboys. The Bengals have won 4 in a row, meaning they are due for a loss. The Bengals tend to win and lose in streaks. A losing streak begins. Dallas 31, Cincinnati 17.

Alex Young, Staff Writer: Every game here on out is a playoff game for the Cowboys. At 6-6, Dallas can’t afford to drop to seven losses if they want any realistic chance at a playoff spot. The problem is, Cincinnati is also playing for their playoff lives which gives both teams a sense of urgency. Having running back DeMarco Murray back proved huge last week for the Cowboys, and they will need him just as much this week against a top-ten defense in the Bengals. Receivers A.J. Green and Dez Bryant should both get the ball for their respective teams, and it may be a close game until one of them breaks a big play, but Dallas has been too inconsistent -albeit better on the road- for me to have faith that they can pull it out. Cowboys 20, Bengals 28.

Tyrone Starr, Staff Writer: IF the Cowboys do what they should and double A.J. Green at all times, I think the defense can get back on track.  Offensively, the hope is that all those ex-Cowboys on the Bengals defensive side get exposed like they did in silver and blue.  The re-insertion of DeMarco Murray into the offense should help keep the down and distance manageable.  Overall, Dallas has played fairly well on the road.  I  say Cowboys 27, Bengals 23.

Michael Vu,  Staff Writers: The Cowboys visit Paul Brown Stadium and familiar ex-Cowboy faces. Romo and the offensive line will continue to have problems with this defense. Look for the stadium to be loud and clear about their intentions: Beat Dallas so we can go to playoffs. But the Cowboys have enough confidence to overcome early struggles in what looks to be a good match up. Terence Newman will struggle against the furious Dez Bryant, which should make Jerry Jones look good for dropping the aging cornerback. Cowboys 27, Bengals 21.

Michael Huff, Staff Writer: This one will be a shootout with both teams trading scores until the Cowboys make a big defensive play to win in the end, 31-28.

Tammy Garrett, Staff Writer: With the Cowboys sitting at 6-6 going into the home stretch of the season, every game is like the playoffs. Even though the Bengals have one more win on the year, Dallas certainly has the talent to come out of Cincy with a victory. As we have all seen, though, it all depends on which Cowboys team shows up come Sunday afternoon. I’m going with the ‘Boys to keep their playoff hopes alive with a big “W.” Dallas 28, Cincinnati 24.

Jonathan Barger, Senior Writer: The Cowboys realistically need to win out if they want to make the playoffs.  It starts Sunday at Noon against the Red Rocket and A.J. Green.  The defense has been obliterated, but still contains more high quality pieces than most defenses. Cornerbacks need to step up the play and make the turnovers that they were paid (and drafted highly) to create. Murray will bring about more balance, and will help Romo have the excellent day he needs for the Cowboys to win.  Cowboys get it done in the end off a key turnover.  Cowboys 34 – Bengals 28.

If you liked a particular answer, please check out the author’s other articles by clicking on their names.

And join us tomorrow morning as we’ll have more picks and predictions from our other writers and contributors!

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