A hated rival on Monday night football, and the Cowboys home opener? Yeah, this one is going to be good. Any time these teams play it always seems to be a battle, and as you look ahead to week three, there’s no reason to think we aren’t in store for more of the same.
These are two teams with obvious talent but they both find themselves dealing with a wide assortment of personnel issues heading into the Monday night showdown. However, injuries aside, the winner of this game could make a case to be in the driver seat for the division, at least early on, which is all the more reason why the Cowboys must find a way to come out victorious on Monday.
You can look at all three phases of both these teams and convincingly state that there is an X-Factor on all three units. However, these two individuals, one a Cowboy, one an Eagle, will have the biggest impact on Monday’s game.
Dallas Cowboys X-Factor:
It’s well documented how Amari Cooper has fared against the Eagles in the past. Cooper has had his fair share of outstanding performances against the division foe, and the Cowboys would love to see that trend continue this week.
Cooper is dealing with what he describes as cracked ribs which had cast some doubt on his availability for this game early in the week. He has since come out and said he is getting better every day and will be ready to go come Monday night.
Cooper being able to play is huge for this Cowboys offense. Not only because he is capable of making plays himself, but what he does for this offense by just being on the field. When he is on the field he demands respect from the opponent, which allows the likes of CeeDee Lamb to continue to have advantageous matchups against lesser cornerbacks. Cooper may see his fair share of battles with Darius Slay, who is much respected and is a top tier player in his own right, but that leaves Lamb and even Cedrick Wilson with winnable matchups against a cornerback group that lacks depth.
Even if Cooper’s statistical output is not as inspiring as in past performances, his being in the game and accounted for on every snap is a domino effect for the rest of this unit. Look for this Cowboys unit to continue to produce offensively and having Amari Cooper out there only enhances this offense’s abilities, especially against a team he has owned since becoming a Cowboy, and is the exact reason he is this week’s X-Factor.
Philadelphia Eagles X-Factor:
Fletcher Cox is a problem and the man can wreak havoc on an offense if not schemed and accounted for. Cox is the choice for the Eagles X-Factor this week as Tyler Biadasz and the rest of the interior offensive line unit will have their hands full all night.
Cox is an elite interior defensive linemen that has consistently played well against the Cowboys throughout his career. Biadasz is going to need to buckle his chin strap tight and understand that he is viewed as the target for this week and prepare for a 60 minute fight with Cox.
Cox has the ability to ruin an offensive game plan. He plays the run extremely well, he sets the line of scrimmage consistently causing offensive linemen to struggle generating a push, and he can get to the quarterback at a high level. There are winnable matchups all over this Eagles defense, but controlling Fletcher Cox and keeping him from being a game-wrecker is the X-Factor on Monday night.
This is a big week for the Dallas Cowboys and an opponent who they obviously know well. We discussed the most important matchups on Monday night, broke down which specific Eagles might be an issue, and went behind enemy lines with our friends at Bleeding Green Nation in our official preview show on the Blogging The Boys YouTube Channel.
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