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Cowboys news: Dallas is running into a hot team in Washington

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NFL: Washington Football Team at Dallas Cowboys Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Washington’s magical run should concern Cowboys fans - Lauren Barash, The Landry Hat

Washington is on a certified hot streak at the moment.

Here’s what Cowboys fans need to know about the Washington Football Team’s miraculous four-game win streak

Their wins may not be pretty, but they are happening. Whatever head coach Ron Rivera said to his team in the bye week clearly worked.

The four-game winning streak started when Washington beat the reigning champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers 29-19. Even though they’d lost many players to injury, Washington figured it out. Even after losing Chase Young, Washington’s defense managed to hold Tampa Bay’s impressive offense to a season-low 273 total yards. They also intercepted MVP frontrunner Tom Brady twice.

In Week 11, Heinicke outshined Cam Newton in a 27-21 win over the Carolina Panthers. Terry McLaurin also helped the offense, contributing 103 of the total 369 yards of offense for the Washington Football Team. Once Newton’s backup, Heinicke asserted himself as a potential threat, completing 16 of 22 passes for 206 yards and three touchdowns.

The next week, Washington beat the Seattle Seahawks 17-15 in a must-win game for both teams. Again, this win was not beautiful. There were several turnovers, a blocked extra-point kick returned for two points, and the loss of another player, as J.D. McKissic was carted off the field in the fourth quarter. Yet, despite all of that, they still came out with a W.

Randy Gregory, Neville Gallimore Closer To Return - Rob Phillips, DallasCowboys.com

It’s looking more and more like the Cowboys will have some new pieces on the defensive line.

The club is optimistic that Gregory and Gallimore will return from Reserve/Injured for Sunday’s road game at Washington, Cowboys chief operating officer Stephen Jones said Monday on 105.3 The Fan.

“They’ve had a great couple of weeks and they’ll take another step this week with full practices,” Jones said. “Unless there’s a setback, which we certainly don’t expect, we’re preparing them to play in the game. But they’ve got to certainly continue to progress, which they have every step of the way. But they’ve got to finish the full body of work, which is the full preparation for the game against the Washington Football Team.”

Gallimore started his 21-day practice window on IR last week. A projected starter in training camp, the second-year tackle has missed all 12 games since dislocating his elbow in preseason.

Gregory ranks second on defense with five sacks in seven games. He’s missed the last three games with a calf strain.

Lawrence was productive in his first appearance since the season opener, posting two tackles, two pass breakups and a quarterback hit in just over half the defensive snaps against the Saints (37 of 70).

And defensive tackle Trysten Hill will return this week from a one-game NFL suspension for throwing a punch at Raiders offensive lineman John Simpson immediately after the Cowboys’ Thanksgiving loss to Las Vegas.

Cowboys at Football Team: Why Sunday’s matchup will dictate how the rest of the Cowboys’ season plays out - Matt Holleran, Blogging The Boys

This stretch of games is important for the NFC East and positioning in the playoffs.

The Cowboys are about to be at as close to full strength as they’ve been in quite some time. Randy Gregory and Neville Gallimore seem set to return on Sunday, so the Dallas defense will be playing with a full deck of cards for the first time this year.

At nearly full-strength, there are no more excuses. It’s time to get this thing back on track.

Sure, Washington is playing better football right now, but there is no question who the overall better team is. The Cowboys are more talented at almost every position on the field. But as we’ve seen far too many times before, that doesn’t mean much if you can’t translate it into big-time victories.

If this truly is the team we all thought they were back in the first half of the season, they walk into Washington and deliver a devastating blow to the red-hot Washington Football Team.

Regardless, the outcome of Sunday’s game is going to define how the rest of the Cowboys’ season plays out. Good or bad, we’re going to know all we need to know about this team come Sunday.

Duke coaching search: Cowboys’ George Edwards among lead candidates to take over for David Cutcliffe - Patrik Walker, CBSSports.com

The Cowboys have so much coaching talent on this roster.

Edwards was once responsible for leading a perennially top-10 defense for the Minnesota Vikings under Mike Zimmer and was a 2020 frontrunner to land the defensive coordinator job in Dallas before the Cowboys pivoted to Dan Quinn and subsequently awarded Edwards a bigger role in Quinn’s staff, one that involves hands-on coaching of a linebacker corps led by rookie phenom Micah Parsons. The 54-year-old also garnered interest last year from the Chicago Bears, who hoped he’d consider taking on the role of defensive coordinator in the Windy City, but it was not to be.

As one of the more respected defensive minds in football, who has a resume to back it up, Edwards would seem like a no-brainer if the Blue Devils zero in on him as the man who can take his alma mater to the next level. Duke floundered to a 3-9 overall record this season and finished 0-8 in ACC play.

The next hire needs to be a home run to replace Cutcliffe, who finished 77-97 (35-79 ACC) over 14 seasons but had four years in which he won eight or more games at Duke.

Dallas Cowboys are mismanaging Ezekiel Elliott. How it hurts him and the team | Opinion - Clarence E. Hill Jr., Fort Worth Star-Telegram

The Zeke situation is getting a little crazy.

Making matters worse is the team’s public refusal to acknowledge that Elliott is clearly not himself.

He can’t jump cut, he barely can cut and runs with no juice.

This has been most evident the last month when had the worst four consecutive rushing days of his career with 14 rushes for 41 yards in a 43-3 victory against the Atlanta Falcons, 9 for 32 in a 19-9 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, 9 for 25 in a 36-33 overtime loss to the Las Vegas Raiders and 13 for 45 in Thursday’s 27-17 victory against the New Orleans Saints.

It’s the worst four-game stretch of his six-year that includes two rushing titles.

Elliott’s limitations were on full display on a 10-yard run against the Saints when he turned the corner and hobbled out of bounds, untouched.

Yet, owner Jerry Jones continues to be disingenuous about what Elliott is dealing with.

“I didn’t see what you’re referring to,” Jones said. “I saw a stout run defense by New Orleans unquestionably. No, I’m really — I’m sound with where I am. His trainers, the people that are closest to his health, his medical situation, they think he’s really good to go.”

Cowboys Eying Thursday Return For McCarthy - David Helman, DallasCowboys.com

The Cowboys main man should be back by the end of the week.

It’s a bit jarring to think that it’s only been a week since McCarthy tested positive for COVID-19. The news came as the Cowboys were already well into their preparation for the Thursday night game in New Orleans, coming off a dramatic overtime loss on Thanksgiving.

With all the twists and turns of a wild November, that feels like a lifetime ago. But it is true that McCarthy still has a few more days of testing to clear the NFL’s protocols for return.

Asked about it on Friday, McCarthy said he wasn’t sure of a specific timeline, but added that he didn’t enjoy having to watch the 27-17 win against the Saints remotely.

“This is not the way you want to spend any of these 17 opportunities that you’re guaranteed,” he said. “It was difficult. I’m proud of the team. I’m looking forward to getting back to work in person.”

As for the team itself, the Cowboys returned to work Monday morning after an extended weekend off, as they begin preparing for a division matchup against Washington.

Until he’s cleared to come back, it sounds like they can expect to have McCarthy there every step of the way, as he was last week.

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