Let’s not waste any time and jump right in and take a look at the most intriguing games for the Dallas Cowboys in the 2020 season.
Week 1 - Los Angeles Rams
The Dallas Cowboys kick off their season at the Los Angeles Rams new stadium. They will also be going up against a Rams team that lost wide receiver Brandon Cooks and running back Todd Gurley in the offseason. Even with those losses, they still have head coach Sean McVay who has the ability to exploit a Cowboys defense that will still be learning a new scheme. Going up against a team in your first game of the season that has averaged 28 points a game under McVay is a tall task for any NFL defense.
The Cowboys will also have to game plan for game-wrecking Pro-Bowl defensive tackle Aaron Donald and Pro Bowl cornerback Jalen Ramsey. With the Cowboys center position up in the air you can expect Donald to attack the middle of the offensive line using his speed and power. Ramsey might be easier to handle as the Cowboys have Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup and rookie CeeDee Lamb, and Ramsey won’t be able to cover all of them at once.
With all that said, the Rams also have to deal with the fact that they have no idea what the Cowboys are going to do on offense and defense. This is a big one for the Cowboys and with a Rams team that has been weakened on offense and defense, it’s one they can win.
Week 3 - Seattle Seahawks
It’s week three and the Cowboys are heading back to the west coast to face off against a team that always causes problems for the Cowboys defense. A lot of that damage is done by Pro Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson who has a 4-2 record against the Cowboys since entering the league. When he is able to make plays with his arms and legs teams don’t stand a chance against him. His ability to create on the fly is going to be a big problem for these Cowboys that are still learning their roles on this 4-3/3-4 hybrid defense.
All isn’t lost for the Cowboys as the Seahawks defense is a shell of its former self. With the Legion of Boom long gone, this Seahawks defense is now giving up plays through the air to teams and that plays right into the Cowboys hands. With no true number one corner to cover Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup or CeeDee Lamb the Cowboys have the personnel to attack this defense.
Looks for the Cowboys to air it out early before using their running game to wear down this Seahawks defense. If they can do that while bottling up Wilson, they will take the air out of the 12th man, they will have a good chance at winning this game.
Week 5 - New York Giants
This one is easy to circle on your Cowboys schedule just because former head coach Jason Garrett is returning to AT&T Stadium as the Giants new offensive coordinator. Many will assume that with Garrett coaching for the Giants that he will have in-depth knowledge of what the Cowboys are going to try to do on offense and defense. Well that’s not the case, with new head coach Mike McCarthy blending his offense with Kellen Moore’s, Garrett’s insight may not be as valuable.
The same can’t be said for Garrett, the Cowboys defensive players have gone up against Garrett’s offenses for years now and will have a better read on what plays may be run against them. Garrett could change a few things but as we’ve seen over the years, he doesn’t like to step out of his comfort zone when calling plays.
That, along with the lack of talent at receiver for the Giants, means the Cowboys can focus their efforts on stopping Saquan Barkley who has had monster games against them. But you never know what can happen against and NFC East rival.
Week 6 - Arizona Cardinals
Man what a difference a year makes, the Cardinals once seen as an irrelevant team by most in the NFL now has some excitement around the team after drafting quarterback Kyler Murray last season. He has a game similar to Russell Wilson but his inexperience can hurt him at times. What Murray has that Wilson doesn’t is a proven receiving core led by Larry Fitzgerald and the recently acquired DeAndre Hopkins who can take over games.
The Cowboys defense is going to be challenged by both receivers and the running game with Kenyan Drake and Murray. To combat that, look for the Mike Nolan to mix up his looks to confuse the second-year quarterback and blitz often to speed up the game for him.
The Cowboys offense shouldn’t have too much of a problem attacking the Cardinals defense. Even with Patrick Peterson on the field, this defense has lost a step and the Cowboys speed at receiver and a strong running game should be able to move the ball and score with ease.
Week 8 - Philadelphia Eagles
This will be a big one for the Dallas Cowboys due to the fact that many are predicting that the Eagles are either going to win the division or come in a close second to the Cowboys. It will be important for the Cowboys to get a win over their biggest divisional rival in the NFC East standings. If the Cowboys are at the top of the division when the game comes around they will be able to pad that lead, making it tougher for the Eagles to win the division.
For the Cowboys to do that they are going to have to stop the Eagles revamped offense which has added a lot of speed at the receiver position with veteran Marquise Goodwin and rookie Jalen Reagor. The Cowboys will also have trouble with the tight end combo of Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert. But, if the defense has gelled they should be able to attack and create havoc for Carson Wentz who tends to hold on to the ball too long.
While the defense could be in for a good game, the Cowboy offense may have a tough time against the Eagles revamped secondary and defensive line. The Cowboys best chance is to get the passing game going before unleashing Elliott with their ground-and-pound running game. This game is always a toss up but who ever wins could create much needed space from the other in the standings.
Week 13 - Baltimore Ravens
This game will probably be the most hyped game of the season for the Dallas Cowboys, even more than the return of Jason Garrett because of one player, quarterback Lamar Jackson. The Ravens offense steamrolled teams last season and luckily the Cowboys didn’t have to face them, but now they not only have to face them, but they are playing them in their on house. The run-pass option offense led by Jackson was tough for most teams to handle because of Jackson's ability to run the football.
That, combined with his pass catching tight ends led by Mark Andrews and deep threat wide receiver Marquise Brown, means the Ravens are able to beat you through the air and on the ground. The Cowboys only chance to stop this team is to make Jackson a pocket passer and not give any big plays deep to Brown. Jackson has shown that when forced to stay in the pocket he isn’t able to hurt you like he does when he’s on the move.
The Cowboys offense could be in for a tough night as the Raven defense is good against the run and the pass. They will have to be creative if they want to beat this team. Not sure they will be able to pull this one out.
Week 15 - San Francisco 49ers
This game could have real playoff implications as many assume that the 49ers are going to be the number one team in the NFC. If the Cowboys are able to surprise a lot of people they could push the 49ers for the number one spot in the playoffs and get the only bye for the NFC. But it won’t be easy, the 49ers are built from top to bottom to beat you up and wear you down on offense with their running game and physical receivers.
The same goes for their defense that is led by second year defensive end Nick Bosa who exploded on the scene with nine sacks, 25 quarterback hits, and 16 tackles for loss as a rookie. In the secondary, the veteran Richard Sherman is still shutting down receivers when he gets his hands on them. This is going to be a tall task for the Cowboys offense but one they could win thanks to their wealth of talent at receiver.
The Cowboys defense’s physical play on the outside bods well for them as they will be able to disrupt the timing in the passing game with their press man coverage. They should also have an advantage along the defensive line with Gerald McCoy attacking the interior of the 49ers offensive line. If the Cowboys are able to win this game they could possibly be in the driver’s seat heading into the playoffs.