If Denver has one weakness it’s their run defense, and exploiting it will be the main key to victory.
Against the Giants, Dallas was forced to run the ball outside to avoid All-Pro, defensive tackle Damon Harrison. This week, the running game will get back to its strength, the inside zone. It’s the staple of the Cowboys’ offense and will be on full display Sunday.
Dallas will need to use Elliott and their running game to accomplish two critical objectives.
First, they need to gain yardage on first and second down, to keep out of third and long. This will help with pass protection, as quick throws and short runs on third down will neutralize the Broncos’ pass rush
Second, they need to dominate time of possession. While this is one of the keys to every game, it’s even more important in Denver. The Dallas defense requires energy to fly to the football, but with a lack of oxygen available, extra rest is a must.
Looking at Denver’s week one match-up shows the significance of the run game. On Monday night, the Chargers were only able to rush for 64 yards and lost the time of possession by nearly ten minutes. Los Angeles got into an early hole. While they almost made a great comeback, the importance of early success running the ball is great.