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Cowboys vs. Lions: Each team’s X-factor player for Sunday

With Dak Prescott expected to be back this week it’s easy to make him the X-factor, but who else may play a large role on Sunday?

Dallas Cowboys v Detroit Lions Photo by Rob Leiter/Getty Images

Well ladies and gentleman, Dak Prescott is back and it feels like we can officially begin our season now. All the props and respect in the world is owed to Cooper Rush for keeping this season on the tracks, but as we head into week seven at 4-2, the 2022 season feels like it now can finally commence. Everybody knows that if the Dallas Cowboys want to reach this season’s goals it had to include Dak under center, and for the first time since week one we will be able to see what that again looks like.

We have learned over the last month and a half that this team is talented in many ways. The defense is special, you can win with the offensive line, and the special teams has made big plays and always feel like they are one jump cut away from daylight with KaVontae Turpin. There are many teams in the league wishing they were in this team’s position. Two games above .500 getting your star quarterback from injury looking at a home date with a one-win Lions team. A lot is going to be learned over the next three months, but with Dak back, we can let the fun really begin.

These two individuals, one a Cowboy, one a member of the Rams, will have the biggest impact on Sunday’s game.

Dallas Cowboys X-factor:

Ezekiel Elliott

Dallas Cowboys v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

It would’ve been the easiest thing in the world to pick Dak Prescott to be this weeks X-factor, but the truth of the matter is we have seen Cooper Rush win against this caliber of team this season, and where it all started was with the defense and a tough running game. Taking nothing away from the Lions as they do have talent, but this year’s Cowboys have a recipe to win football games. Insert Ezekiel Elliott. Coming off his most productive game of the young season, Zeke looks to build on that performance and lean on a leaky at best Lions run defense.

This defense can be had in a multitude of ways, but what we may see is this Cowboys team deploy the same recipe they have had while Dak has been out. A consistent commitment to the running game and a quick passing attack that uses the defense’s eagerness to stop the rush against them. The Cowboys will look to ease Dak back into live action, and having Elliott and company firing on all cylinders on the ground will allow for this team to do that. This is the type of game that a player of Zeke’s style can wear down a defense and control the game. Look for Dallas to use a good mix of Zeke and Tony Pollard as they have established themselves as one of the most complete backfields in football. This offense has a chance to be good going forward, and even with Dak back, it may still start with Ezekiel Elliott.

Detroit Lions X-factor:

Amon-Ra St. Brown

Detroit Lions v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

St. Brown is easily the Detroit Lions most explosive player. A favorite of quarterback Jared Goff, St. Brown has seen his fair share of targets this year and has been making the most of his opportunities. St. Brown has missed one game due to injury this year, but through his four games of action St. Brown has collected 27 receptions, 271 yards, and three touchdowns. He has clearly shown himself to be a point of emphasis for this Lions’ offensive attack and the Cowboys will need to find a way to limit St. Brown and his impact on the game if they are going to pull out their fifth win of the season.

St. Brown is a dynamic route runner that makes him a challenge in man coverage for the Cowboys secondary. He is also smart within his route running where he is exceptional at finding the area within a zone and sitting down for an easy pitch and catch between him and Goff. His football IQ allows him to be multiple out wide and to be a tough draw for any cornerback. He is physical, plays with tenacity that makes him a tough runner with the football in his hand and is willing bring the fight to a tackler. The Cowboys will need to be ready for a competitive matchup on Sunday afternoon. The Cowboys are more than equipped to handle the abilities of a player like Amon-Ra St. Brown, it will just take a complete effort to do so and for that reason, he is this weeks X-factor for the Cowboys to worry about.

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