3 notes to digest before the Cowboys host Washington

Dallas Cowboys, Thanksgiving Day (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys, Thanksgiving Day (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /
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Alex Smith, Washington Football Team
Alex Smith, Washington Football Team (Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports) /

1. Alex Smith faces a resurging, confident Dallas Cowboys defense

Quarterback Alex Smith is starting his third game. He has played in four games this year. As a starter, he is 1-1.

So far, Smith has 918 yards, two touchdowns, four interceptions, a completion percentage of 68.2, and a quarterback rating of 80.8. He has taken 12 sacks for a loss of 73 yards. Smith turned 36 last May.

I respect the heck out of Smith as a football player, and his gruesome journey to return to the gridiron. But the Dallas Cowboys are hunting on defense, determined to change the narrative that labeled them as a national embarrassment.

No, the defense is far from perfect. But the energy is different. The vibe is different. This could spell a lot of trouble for Smith.

If the Dallas Cowboys could hold the fort with the likes of Ben Roethlisberger and Kirk Cousins, I don’t see a fair shake for Smith. This is Mike Nolan’s shot to turn up the dial and send the heat. And, I think the defensive coordinator will.

The Cowboys created six turnovers in the last three games. Before that, they accomplished three turnovers during a seven-game span. The Cowboys gave up 430 total yards against the Vikings and still won. Let’s see if Nolan can clean that up a little this week.