Cowboys will need to be perfect in potential must-win against Dalvin Cook and Minnesota Vikings

By Aaron Arguello



The Cowboys are coming off a bye week in which they had a lot more positives to build on than in recent weeks. The defense’s inability to get stops seemed to wane as they held the undefeated Steelers to less than fifty rush yards in a close game that was decided on the last play. Andy Dalton made it through both the Concussion and the Covid protocol and has looked sharp in his return to the QB1 position. Along with the offensive line somewhat stabilizing, compounded with the fact that they’re 2-7 in a division in which the Eagles lead with an astonishing 3-5-1 record, Cowboys fans still have a glimmer of hope for a path to a postseason berth. It won’t be easy, though, as Sunday Dallas faces the NFL’s leading rusher in Dalvin Cook, who has a hall of fame year that has amounted to a three-game winning streak bringing them back to life in the NFC north. Considering the Cowboys are the 2nd worst against the run this year, along with the toughness of their remaining schedule after Minnesota (Baltimore’s rushing attack). The Cowboys will need to be perfect in what could turn out to be a must-win for them if they want to make the playoffs.

Corralling Cook won’t be an easy task from a coaching standpoint, either. Though they run often, they have almost an even split between which sides they run to. But they do average considerably more yards per carry on the left side. Jaylon Smith will have to back up his comments about schemes and play recognition, and being a more decisive leader for the defense in general. And we won’t know about Demarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory’s conditions until Saturday. If they were ruled out, it could force younger players to see more playing time than expected.

Though, with or without Lawrence or Gregory, the defense will have to play their best game all season for us to have a chance. Dalvin Cook is just too good. But on the other hand, the same could be said about this Post-Dak offense. Our offense will have to look more like it did with Dak on Sunday than without. Because although Dallas ranks in the top 5 in passing yards, that number has dropped significantly since Dak’s injury in early October. Since then, our starting quarterbacks have only averaged about 191yds per game to Dak’s 371. Crucial because Minnesota has one of the lowest-ranked pass defenses in the league. We’ll need to exploit that weakness in the secondary if we hope to steal a win from a very underrated Vikings team with a lot to prove.

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