On Sunday, the Green Bay Packers travel to Jerry World to take on the Dallas Cowboys. David Halprin of Blogging the Boys kindly volunteered to answer our questions about the Cowboys and provide some insight into their strengths and weaknesses.
APC: If you were building a game plan for the Cowboys, how would you attack them on offense? On defense?
The Cowboys defense has played fairly well but they are more of a bend-don’t-break type of defense that gives up a lot of yards but tightens up in their end of the field, especially in the red zone. They are a fast defense so I wouldn’t try a lot of sideline-to-sideline stuff, they have a couple of excellent linebackers so they generally can make plays going east and west. You need to hit the hole fast in the run game and try to isolate one side of the play and see if you can seal off one of the linebackers heading for the hole. In the passing game I would go after corner Chidobe Awuzie. It’s not that he’s bad in coverage, but Byron Jones on the other side is not a guy a lot of quarterbacks will want to test. Awuzie generally has good coverage but he struggles locating the ball and making plays on it, so that’s where I would look to attack. And you better get someone on defensive end Robert Quinn who is playing out of his mind right now.
The Saints were able to beat the Cowboys by shutting down the run game without committing extra players to the box. They basically manhandled the Cowboys highly thought of offensive line, especially along the interior. The Cowboys have guard Zack Martin who is usually all-world but he is dealing with a back issue. Center Travis Frederick is also usually all-world but he is battling back from missing last season with Guillain-Barre Syndrome. The other guard, Connor Williams, is still just an average player. The interior of the line is struggling at the moment so I would make sure to stuff that area in the run game and force the Cowboys to try something else besides their usual battering ram of Ezekiel Elliott through the middle of the line. In the passing game, get after Prescott if you can, if he’s given any time he’s been deadly this year. You have to play your corners tight on the Cowboys receivers and make Prescott hold the ball. If he gets it out on time the offense is running like a machine.
We’d like to thank David. As always, keep your internet machines tuned to Acme Packing Company this Sunday for our comprehensive game-day coverage of Packers versus Cowboys.