Dallas Cowboys must invoke history against Kirk Cousins, Vikings

The Dallas Cowboys welcome the Minnesota Vikings into their home stadium for a SNF matchup this week. History is on Dallas’ side, but they must maintain it.

The Dallas Cowboys will welcome a somewhat familiar foe into AT&T Stadium this Sunday. Kirk Cousins, currently the starting quarterback of the Minnesota Vikings, spent the first six years of his career in the NFC East. He actually played the first 62 games of his career in the maroon and gold of the Washington Redskins, a long-time Cowboys rival.

While Cousins’s current contract is always something worthy of mentioning, when considering his performance from the start of last year through at least the first three weeks of this season, today we will take a hard look at his splits. Splits are an athlete’s stats divided into sections, so to speak, sectored by different things such as situations, opponents, where the game was played, so forth and so on, and etc.

When looking at Cousins’s splits against the Cowboys, they tell a somewhat favorable tale for the team in Dallas. In seven games against the Boys, Kirk Cousins has a 1-6 record. That is definitely something that might be on his mind heading into this weekend, although it shouldn’t be on the minds of Cowboys defenders.

When looking at Cousins’s other stats against the Cowboys, it also plays in their favor. While it isn’t the 14 interceptions he has thrown to the New York Giants across his career, the Cowboys are tied for the fourth highest-ranked team on this list with the Arizona Cardinals, having picked off Cousins 5 times across the seven times he has faced Dallas.

He has also taken 13 sacks to the Cowboys across his career, which could be indicative of the offensive lines he’s played behind more than anything, but worthy of mentioning considering the Cowboys’ lack of ability to get home at times this season and with the fact that this number is also tied for the fourth-highest among this list.

While people like to point to the time of day as a big indicator as to how Kirk Cousins might perform on any given Sunday, with him being a combined 9-23 in games that start at 4:05 EST or later, the stats that are most telling to me are his splits based on being home or on the road.

While he is 27-17 across his career in home games, he is almost the complete opposite of that on the road. With a record of 15-26 away from home, that bodes well for the Cowboys on Sunday night, especially considering the rest of the statistics we have mentioned.

While Cousins is on pace for one of his best statistical seasons ever, with 16 touchdowns and only three interceptions through nine games this season, he can be had by an NFC East team and especially on the road. This is what history tells us.

The Cowboys will need to be extra sharp on defense this week, even though they’ll only be facing an abbreviate dynamic duo, as opposed to a terrible trio with Adam Thielen set to miss the game. It will be a test of wills to see which defense is hungry, mean, and physical enough to stop the other team’s running game.

Being that you could pretty much call that a wash, the game might come down to which combo of quarterback and playmaker can make the most splash plays against the opposing defense. I like my chances with Dak Prescott against Cousins, but the game still has to be played. This is a huge game for both sides, with both being supposed contenders and both looking for all of the signature wins that they can get to put on their resume.

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If the Vikings can come into Dallas and beat this Cowboys team in their home stadium, that validates the hype they have been receiving over the last five weeks or so. If the Cowboys can beat this streaking Vikings team, it might finally be the stone we need to see turned over to confirm that this team is what we think they are and what they thought they could be. Either way, it should be an explosive contest and we can’t wait to see it!