Last Sunday, the Atlanta Falcons won 28-20 at home against their division rival, the Carolina Panthers. With Carolina coming to Dallas for this week's Monday nighter, I asked Dave the Falconer at SBNation's blog for the Falcons, The Falcoholic, if he would do a little scouting report on the Cowboys' upcoming opponent.
He was more than happy to do so, and I thank him for that. Click below to read how he thinks the Cowboys can be victorious over the Panthers.
I realize MBIII may not be playing, but you're going to want to aggressively attack the Panthers front four with Felix Jones and Tashard Choice regardless. The Panthers just lost starting defensive tackle Louis Leonard and you should have some immediate success pounding the ball through the middle. That will also open up some passing lanes for you. Despite looking a bit shaky through the first half, Matt Ryan was still able to pass all over them, so by simply mixing up your playcalling you should find some offensive success.
Run to set up the pass...hmm. Sounds like a plan to me!
The strength is obviously the running game, which got going pretty well against us last week. DeAngelo Williams is very talented and Jonathan Stewart didn't look like he was bothered by any lingering injuries, and the duo combined for 144 yards and a touchdown on only 25 (carries). You'll need to stop them and try to force Jake Delhomme to make some bad throws. He may be more obliging for you than he was for us.
Even though the Cowboys did a good job bottling up the, we can not forget their horrible job of defending the run in the season opener at Tampa Bay. Williams is fast as lightning, and Stewart has a good combination of quickness and strength.
On D conventional wisdom says Julius Peppers, but our second year tackle almost completely neutralized him on Sunday. Take him out of the equation and the pass rush is virtually nonexistant. You'll need to worry more about the secondary, which has a number of good players who will be going for the ball and can pick Romo if he's not spot on.
It may be safe to assume that whomever gets the centerfielding duties for Carolina will be licking their chops. Whoever controls the ball in this one may control the game.
Thanks again, Dave. Good stuff. We owe you one!