The Dallas Cowboys are 6-2 heading into the bye week. All things considered, that’s about as good of an outcome as anyone could have expected with how bleak things looked back in Week 1. With the bye week in full swing, it’s time to look forward to the second half of the season.
Today we give you three bold predictions for Dallas’ second half.
1) Micah Parsons breaks the Cowboys’ single-season sack record, recording 12.5 sacks in Dallas’ final nine games
It’s hard to imagine where the Cowboys would be without Micah Parsons. When Dallas drafted the 23-year-old in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, not even they could have predicted what he would go on to become.
In his second season in the league, Parsons has been the best defensive player in football through eight games. The linebacker is tied for second in the NFL with 39 pressures and eight sacks, via Pro Football Focus, and has been a true difference-maker in virtually every game.
It's truly amazing how consistently relentless the Cowboys' edge rushers are. So many times a player will come from a different time zone to make the play. There is no escape from DeMarcus Lawrence, Dorance Armstrong, and Micah Parsons. They will get you. pic.twitter.com/MbB3hdPyvQ— Dan Rogers (@DannyPhantom24) October 24, 2022
Micah Parsons with sack No. 5 on the season pic.twitter.com/8lfVyRa2j8— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) October 9, 2022
Parsons is a heavy favorite to win the NFL’s Defensive Player Of The Year Award via DraftKings, currently sitting with -225 odds. Nick Bosa sits in second place at +600, so it’s pretty much a lock Parsons will take home the honor if he is able to stay healthy.
It may seem like a stretch to predict Parsons to record 12.5 sacks over his next nine games, but he truly has the capability to put together that type of historic second half. He has already registered two sacks in a game four times this season, and he’s going to do it five times in the second half.
Micah Parsons cements himself as the NFL’s best defensive player in a dominating second half, recording 12.5 sacks and breaking Dallas’ single-season record of 20 by DeMarcus Ware.
2) CeeDee Lamb’s monster second half propels him to 1,200 receiving yards for the first time in his career
It may not seem like it at face value, but CeeDee Lamb has actually had a pretty nice start to the season all things considered. Even in a struggling offense that had Cooper Rush as the quarterback for five games, Lamb has produced.
In eight games, the 23-year-old has caught 42 passes for 556 yards. While these aren’t eye-popping numbers, Lamb is ninth in the NFL in receiving yards and is tied for fifth in the league with 29 first downs, via PFF.
NFL receiving leaders through Week 8:— RJ Ochoa (@rjochoa) November 1, 2022
- Tyreek Hill, 961
- Stefon Diggs, 764
- Justin Jefferson, 752
- Jaylen Waddle, 727
- Cooper Kupp, 686
- A.J. Brown, 659
- Ja'Marr Chase, 605
- Mike Evans, 577
- CeeDee Lamb, 556
- Amari Cooper, 553
- Travis Kelce, 553
- Terry McLaurin, 553
The Cowboys opted to not make a deal for a receiver at the NFL’s trade deadline this week, so they are going to need Lamb to be a true WR 1 down the stretch this season.
Luckily for the Cowboys, they have their star signal-caller, Dak Prescott, back, and his return is going to help Lamb take off in the second half. In the two games Prescott has played since returning from injury, Lamb has caught nine passes for 147 yards and scored a touchdown.
Since Dak Prescott returned from his thumb injury, he's returned to his elite level of play. @Nate_Tice breaks down how Dak found CeeDee Lamb for a TD last week in the Cowboys' rout of the Bears.— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) November 1, 2022
It's Wind the Clock!
(Presented by @INDOCHINO) pic.twitter.com/JBnziRVsvm
Lamb becomes the focal point of Dallas’ offense in the second half, averaging over 80 receiving yards per game, and sets a new career high.
3) For just the third time since 2000, the Cowboys win 13 regular season games
If you look at the rest of Dallas’ schedule, they have plenty of winnable games. Coming off the bye the Cowboys face two tough road matchups against the Packers and Vikings, but then things look very favorable. Dallas gets a four-game stretch, with three at home, where they face the Giants, Colts, Texans, and Jaguars. If they are able to split with the Packers and Vikings, the Cowboys could be looking at an 11-3 record heading into a huge Week 16 matchup with the Eagles.
The Cowboys take advantage of their soft second-half schedule, posting a 7-2 record over their final nine games and recording the franchise’s third 13-win season since 2000.