I’m certainly not saying I think the Cowboys will lose. But I think that is a real possibility. The Cowboys will need 4 quarters of good football and the run defense needs a dramatic improvement over their last two performances.
There are a few things that make me worry about this game. This is a game that will likely prove to be the pivotal moment in the season. Win and they could go on a pretty good run against a weak schedule to get back in the NFC East and playoff race. Lose and they are probably in too deep of a hole to get back in the playoff hunt. So far this season the Cowboys haven’t been able to win any games that felt like they were season changers. We all know how the Jets game went down and the Eagles game was a disaster. Should I even mention the Lions game?
The run defense has me very worried. They have given up big yardage in two straight games. The good news is that Sean Lee will be back in the lineup this week. But he’ll be playing with only one hand. But Sean Lee with one hand is leaps and bounds better than Keith Brooking on any day. Hopefully the missing link in the run defense has been Lee because the Cowboys won’t win this game if they can’t stop Fred Jackson. I have to believe that Rob Ryan is making the adjustments to the defense that will help shore up the huge cutback lanes that have been opening up over the last two games.
Miles Austin is injured again. Laurent Robinson has been an unexpected surprise as the #3 receiver but now he will get more attention from the defense. Hopefully he can do enough to keep the defense from focusing on Jason Witten and Dez Bryant all day. Dez Bryant is going to have to step up and become the receiver he was drafted to be. Dez is long past due for a 10 catch for 200 yards and 3 TD’s type of performance. Maybe this will be the week.
As usual I have no doubt that the outcome of this game will probably depend on Tony Romo’s performance more than anything else in the game. Tony needs to be aggressive but also protect the ball. He has seemed a little gun shy since the disastrous second half of the Lions game. Maybe now that he is fully healthy he’ll get his swagger back. The offense needs him to hit big plays to keep the defense from focusing on stopping DeMarco Murray.
I’m really uneasy about this game. Half of me thinks I should pick the Bills to win because they are coming off of a tough loss and they have been a good team this year. But the other half of me feels like the home field advantage and they Rob Ryan defensive schemes can do enough to shut down the Bills offensive attack. Either way I think it will be a very close game down to the end of the 4th quarter. I’m going to stick with what my heart tells me and pick the Cowboys to win 26-23.