Cowboys vs Commanders: Gut projection
Projection: Dallas Cowboys 24, Washington Commanders 17
The ‘Boys coming off of a 176-yard rushing performance last week which saw the classic duo of Ezekiel Elliott earning hard yards and Tony Pollard using his burst for chunk plays. They seem to have found something along the left side of the line behind rookie Tyler Smith and seasoned veteran Jason Peters.
Washington is allowing 129 rushing yards per game and I expect we see another heavy dose of the run game against a suspect run defense. I see the roles reversed this weekend as well. Pollard led the way against the Giants with 105 and Zeke had a very respectable 73 tough yards. This could be a statement game for Elliott, rushing for 120 yards and two touchdowns with Pollard contributing in the passing game.
Washington is averaging just 19 points per game this season and is going up against a defense in the Cowboys that is playing extremely confidently. The Dallas defense has allowed only 17 points and piled up 13 sacks already. The Commanders average only 87 rushing yards per game and will look to win with their passing attack.
Wentz has a tendency to hold the ball too long at times and that should allow Micah Parsons, DeMarcus Lawrence, and Co. to feast up front. Even if they don’t get him, Wentz’s suspect decision-making could lead to some interception chances for an opportunistic secondary.
Cooper Rush doesn’t need to win this game alone and that probably won’t occur. What will happen is a steady, sure-handed performance that protects the ball and picks his moments to attack. CeeDee Lamb came alive in the second half last week and that should continue with another end zone trip Sunday afternoon.
The Cowboys do just enough once again to get enough juice from the offense, get a turnover or two defensively, and play smart on special teams to find a way to march onwards to 3-1.