Dallas Cowboys: A bold Week 3 prediction against Philadelphia Eagles

Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

Week 3 in the NFL closes out tonight when the Dallas Cowboys attempt to take the outright division lead against a hated rival. The Philadelphia Eagles come to Dallas with the same 1-1 record as the Cowboys and are looking for the upset.

Last week, I picked the Cowboys to beat the Chargers in a shootout but it was a much tighter game defensively than some might have predicted. So far I am 1-1 on the season and I hope I can get to 2-1 just like the Cowboys should.

The Eagles are led by first-year head coach Nick Sirianni who has used a bunch of corny cliches to try and motivate a team that still employs a bevy of veteran players in the trenches. Their skill position players are short on experience yet youthful enough to create problems.

Dak Prescott will get his first rushing touchdown of the season in Week 3

The Eagles will be without their mammoth offensive tackle Jordan Mailata and former 2019 first-round pick Andre Dillard will get the start. That shouldn’t be a huge concern but Dillard has not developed as expected. If I am the Cowboys, this is where defensive weapon Micah Parsons should get the majority of his rushes when he isn’t playing linebacker.

The Eagle’s defensive line took a major hit when they lost defensive end, Brandon Graham, for the season, and that should alleviate some pressure for Cowboy’s right tackle, Terrence Steele. Eagles interior defensive lineman Fletcher Cox and Javon Hargrave can really get to the passer but Hargrave has done a much better job of playing the run than he did last season.

Cox is older but he is still a load in the middle of that defense. You can’t forget edge rusher, Derek Barnett as the interior of the Cowboys offensive line has their work cut out for them this evening. Much has been made about Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts and his penchant for avoiding throwing to the middle of the field yet I wonder if that could be used against the Cowboys.

So far the Eagles have used bubble screens and short passes to try and get the ball in their playmaker’s hands in order to get Hurts the confidence needed moving forward. That is something I will be on the lookout for.

1-1. 54. Monday, Sept 27. 1-1. Cowboys -3.5. 8:15 PM ET. ESPN. 123

Eagles running back Miles Sanders is a nice player in this offense and he too can put enough stress on defense to warrant concern. Their tight end tandem of Dallas Goedert and Zack Ertz are still formidable weapons that can beat a team. Stopping the Philadelphia offense might come down to how well can the Cowboys’ secondary shed and tackle on the wings.

Even as good and surprising as the Eagles have been, my initial thought had the same ending. Before I watched some of the Eagles on film, I thought the Cowboys would either start out hot and cruise to an easy win or the Cowboys would start off slow yet eventually pull away with a sizeable and comfortable lead.

I think I liked what I saw the Eagles doing on film yet I still see a young coach who is still trying to figure out his players. I am going with the latter and I think this game is going to be close before the Cowboys figure out what the Eagles are doing.

The Eagles played a good game against San Francisco last week and even with the gimme touchdown they got from the Forty-Niners, they only generated 11 total points. Dallas has options on offense that this Eagles team has not yet seen this season.

The Cowboys will pull away and lead the NFC East by the end of the night by a score of 34-21. Some expect Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott to have a great game and although I believe Zeke will have his best game of the season, I expect Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott to throw for over 300 yards passing and two touchdowns.

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My bold prediction is that Dak Prescott will get his first rushing touchdown of the season. In what will be Prescott’s first return to the scene of his horrific injury, I also expect a hyped crowd to be louder than what the fans in California did for the Cowboys last week in Los Angeles. The defense will continue its impressive takeaway streak en route to a Monday Night Football victory.