During the 2012 season, I continuously made "previews" for the Cowboys games each week. It was a very detailed story pretty much, where I basically went through the entire game by quarter, "predicting" what would happen. Now, before the draft or free agency is even complete, I will do that for every game on the schedule right now. Granted, this fake preview is probably not accurate in the least. I have no idea how rookies and other free agent signing will impact the games. However unrealistic and detailed beyond belief this is, it is not a real preview, but it is just fun to pretend I have been to the future and seen these games.
Week 1: @ New Orleans
Week 2: vs St. Louis
Week 3: @ Detroit
Week 4: vs Green Bay
Week 5: @Philadelphia
Week 6: BYE
Week 7: @ Kansas
Week 8: vs Minnesota
Week 9: @ New York (Giants)
Week 10: vs Washington
Week 11: vs Denver
Week 12: @ San Diego
Week 13: vs Philadelphia
Week 14: vs New York (Giants)
Week 15: vs Oakland
Week 16: @ Washington
Week 17: @ Chicago
Week 16: @ Washington Redskins: Sunday Night Football
The 8-6 Cowboys will be going into their last two games with a win for playoffs mentality. They will be locked with the Giants (8-6) and the Redskins (8-6) for the divisional title, and by a long shot, the Eagles (7-7). The game against Washington will be for the lead as the Giants will be losing to the Seahawks earlier on that Sunday, dropping to 8-7. The Cowboys will be in a tough situation, playing on the road against two good teams to end the season. But with a superstar receiver, a better offensive line, the two best defensive coordinators in the league, and a team hungry to get back into postseason play, the Cowboys will be determined to take revenge and try to win both games.
Tony Romo, DAL: Last year in the season finale, Romo had a very disappointing game, in which he threw three interceptions as the Cowboys lost to the Redskins in a win and in situation. This time, Romo will be a key player, because he will have to limit his mistakes. The Redskins are an opportune team, and any lapses in judgement could mean the difference between playoffs or another year of staying home during January.
Jason Witten, DAL: The Redskins secondary is not a top unit, but they can create turnovers when they are hot and always seem to be that way when playing Divisional Rivals. If Romo struggles to navigate his way in between the Redskins back four, he will have to start looking at safer, shorter options. Witten is a quarterbacks best friend when nothing else is available, and he will have to show it against the Redskins. There will be many times that Romo will not be able to find an opening in the Redskins D, and that’s where Witten will make his moves. Witten may also need to be ready to even be the main receiver if the secondary makes a couple plays early and Romo doesn’t want to throw back there the rest of the night.
Bruce Carter, DAL: Everyone is well aware of Robert Griffins running ability, and the way he can shred a defense when he is given an open look. With Sean Lee playing back in coverage on many plays, Carter will have to step up and be the man to keep Griffin contained. If Carter isn’t on his game, Griffin could light up the stadium.
DeAngelo Hall, WAS: Hall will most likely be responsible for Dez Bryant, which can be a daunting task. Bryant is a receiver that can dominate any defensive back in the league, and Hall will have to play the game of his life in a crucial matchup if the Redskins hope to keep the Cowboys out of scoring range.
Quarter by Quarter
Q1: With a loud stadium and a crowd ready for an intense game, the Redskins will get the opening kickoff. They will bring it out to the 30 and the deadly RG3 and his buddy Alfred Morris will take the field. The Cowboys defense will be in top shape though, keeping two Morris rushes to 6 yards, and making Griffin throw the ball away on third down to force a 3 and out. Dwayne Harris will not return it and Romo will take the field (accompanied by many jeers) at the Cowboys 15. The Cowboys will start off in better shape on offense, as Murray gets 20 yards on the first two plays. Romo starts to air it out, with two short completions to Witten bringing up 3rd and 1. On play action, Romo goes deep and gets a play out for 50 yards to Bryant, putting Dallas inside the Redskins 10 yard line. But it will fall apart from there, as Romo fumbles the snap. He is able to land on it, but loses 5 yards. Murray is stuffed for a 2 yard loss on a draw on the next play, bringing up a 3rd and goal from outside the 10. Romo will be pressured from the inside and try to roll out, but will have to throw it away. Dallas still gets a field goal and starts with a 3-0 lead. The Redskins will want to get some more yardage on the next drive. Griffin keeps dropping back, and completes 5 passes in a row for 45 yards and keeps converting annoying third downs. Barry Church takes it upon himself to dictate the way this game is going to be played, knocking the mess out of Josh Morgan on a jumpball. Morgan leaves the game with a dislocated shoulder. After the receivers are told what the tone of the game is, Carter wants to let the backfield know. On a draw, Carter gets inside and plants Morris on the ground as soon as he touches the ball behind the line. On a third and long. Griffin is pressured and throws a bad pass to Garcon, which is knocked down by Claiborne. The Redskins punt, and it is a touchback. Dallas will try to extend the lead, and do a good job driving to midfield. But Romo is off his game and misses a wide open Dez Bryant on the next play. Murray takes a handoff up the middle for 5 yards, bringing up a 3rd and 5. Romo has trouble handing it off cleanly on the next play, and Murray is slowed down for a second. Instead of being able to burst through a hole and get the first down, the delay only makes it possible to get two yards and Dallas punts. Chris Jones puts the ball at the Redskins 15. The first quarter ends.
Q2: The Redskins will be eager to put points on the board, and the crowd will be clamoring for some more scoring as well. The Redskins will get a good play from Morris, who will get a 40 yard gain out on the first play from scrimmage. The D will be whiffed, and two long passes later, the Redskins will be at the Cowboys 10. A play action fake will fool Durant and Griffin will deliver the ball to Davis on a flat, who will run over Matt Johnson to the endzone for the first TD, and the Redskins take a 7-3 lead. The Cowboys will want to regain their lead, but will be unable to do so. Both teams will punt back and forth down to the last 3 minutes. Dallas will be playing from their own 5. Romo will light up some fireworks though, getting his team out to the 35 at the 2 minute mark. The next drive involves a couple penalties, 2 sacks, and a lot of the remaining clock, but Dallas is at the Redskins 25 with 10 seconds to go. Romo is unable to put it into the endzone, and Dallas has to be satisfied with the field goal. The game goes to halftime with Dallas trailing 7-6.
Q3: The Cowboys will take the opening kickoff, wanting to get on track with the offense. Romo will shake off his first half miscues and really turn it on in the second half. On the first drive, Romo will take a dominant looking drive to the Redskins 30. On the next play, Romo will get good time in the pocket and throw a seem to Jason Witten, who will get inside the goal line and score a TD. Dallas will go for 2. Romo will fake a play action and duck into the offensive line himself on a sort of QB sneak. The defense will not be ready and Romo will get in between two defensive tackles and past the goal line, as Dallas takes a 14-7 lead. The Redskins will be unrelenting to give up the lead though and will march down the field themselves. But on third down, Griffin throws a bad pass and Lee drops a potential pick. The Skins still get a field goal and trim the lead, 14-10. The Cowboys will be ready to make this a fight to the death, but will not show it on offense. Romo leads a good drive, but Bryant fumbles at the Redskins 35, and the Skins land on it, resulting in a lot of cheers and a momentum change. Griffin leads his team down slowly and on a QB draw, gets enough to put the ball inside the 5. Morris gets a handoff outside and beats Durant to the corner of the goal line and retakes the lead for Washington, 17-14. The Cowboys will want to stop the Redskins 10 straight points. Romo will look good on the drive again, leading the Cowboys to the Redskins 40. But a Murray 2 yard run is followed by 2 incompletions. Dan Bailey attempts a 55 yard kick, and makes a beauty out of it, splitting the posts to tie the score at 17. The Cowboys kick off (touchback) and the quarter ends, heading to the final period.
Q4: The Redskins will be in for a hard fought finish, and will start it off with a good looking drive. Alfred Morris and company will take 5 minutes off the clock en route to an Aldrick Robinson 15 yard TD. Washington takes a 24-17 lead. Dallas will need a TD, and Romo will earn it. Miles Austin will show up, and together, Romo and Austin will lead the Cowboys down to the Redskins 20. It will be Bryant’s turn next, as Romo hits him on a 10 yard slant, followed by a 10 yard endzone fade. Dallas ties the score at 24, leaving 6 minutes on the clock. The Redskins will not be done scoring yet. Griffin will get a big run, and with two passes to Davis, the Redskins will be knocking on a score. On third and 15, Griffin evades a sack from Hatcher and uses the opening to go all the way into the endzone, and the Redskins take a late 31-24 lead, leaving Dallas with just 3 minutes to score. Romo will need to show up clutch now. Romo will lead the Cowboys to halfield and the 2 minute warning will make an appearance. Two penlties and two incompletions later, Dallas will be faced with a crucial 3rd and 20 from their own 40. Romo will drop back, survey, and throw it to Witten. Witten will run, but will only get 15, bringing up a game changing 4th and 5. On fourth down, Romo drops backs, is immediately pressured, breaks away from 2 sacks, fakes a pass to Austin, and runs right up the middle for a 10 yard gain and a first down. Running the hurry up, Dallas gets to the Skins 15 yard line with 30 seconds left. After two incompletions, the Cowboys will be at another 3rd and long, with 20 seconds to go. Romo makes a quick pass to Bryant, who jukes around Hall and has an opening to the endzone. Bryant gets inside, and the game is tied, 31-31, with just 12 seconds to go. The Redskins kneel to OT.
OT: The Cowboys will get the kickoff to start the game. Romo will lead a solid drive to halffield. On second down. Austin will break away from the defenders and pull out a 30 yard gain. The Redskins D will solidify, not allowing the TD. The Cowboys still get a field goal, and the Redskins will need to match. Griffin will convert two 3rd downs and a 4th to get to midfield. On the next play, Barry Church gets inside on a safety blitz and puts Griffin on the ground. Griffin hurts his ribs, and Chruch successfully takes out his second Redskin on the night. Kirk Cousins will take the field, needing to prove his clutchness. On third down, he will get a completion and the Redskins will eventually find themselves on the Cowboys 34 in a third down situation. Cousins will evade a sack from Hatcher, and go for the win outright with a bomb to Garcon. Carr is the clutch man, not allowing it to happen. Kai Forbath with come to make a field goal and go into a sudden death game. The kick will go, and just miss the post out to the left by inches. The crowd will be shocked, and the Cowboys will win a crucial matchup on the road, clinching their first winning season since 2009, with just one game left between the regular season and the postseason.
Final Score: Dallas Cowboys 34, Washington Redskins 31 (OT)
Romo: 32/55, 460 yards, 3 TD
Murray: 13 rush, 60 yards
Bryant: 13 rec, 260 yards, 2 TD
Austin: 5 rec, 60 yards
Witten: 11 rec, 110 yards, TD
Griffin: 25/40, 295 yards, 2 TD
Morris: 20 rush, 120 yards, 2 TD