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Cowboys news: With the Philadelphia Eagles on deck, a bounce back game is very much needed

The latest news and notes surrounding the Dallas Cowboys.

Dallas Cowboys v Jacksonville Jaguars Photo by Courtney Culbreath/Getty Images

Week 16 Preview: Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys - Shane Taylor, Inside The Star

Regardless of who is under center this week, the Cowboys need to send a message by defeating the Eagles.

Here we are, week 16, and the Cowboys host the Eagles on Christmas eve.

The Cowboys (10-4) come into this week after dropping a close one in overtime to Jaguars last week. On the other hand, the Eagles (13-1) may be without Jalen Hurts for a few games due to a shoulder injury.

The Cowboys’ defense is fighting the injury bug right now, and even with a playoff spot locked up, I still expect almost everyone to be out there until the season’s final week, but how will they attack Philly this week?

Well, it depends on who starts on Sunday. The Cowboys need to gameplan for both Hurts and Gardner Minshew. It is hard to tell if the Eagles are playing mind games here or if they will sit Hurts.

No matter who starts at QB for Philly, this defense must find its pass rush again. They look tired, and that is no excuse. They are without Jourdan Lewis, Anthony Brown, Johnathan Hankins, and now Leighton Vander Esch for a few games, so they need to regain that confidence with key players out.

Are opponents licking their chops to target a suddenly suspect Dallas Cowboys defense? - Clarence E. Hill Jr., Fort Worth Star-Telegram

This unit will need to bounce back in a hurry to prevent a disappointment come playoffs.

While the rest of the football world is having a conniption over quarterback Dak Prescott’s overblown surge in interceptions, the Dallas Cowboys have more pressing concerns in regards to their presumably declining Super Bowl hopes.

A dominant defense that was suppose to be key to be the Cowboys being real contenders in 2022 and possibly end a 27-year championship drought has suddenly become suspect due to injuries, attrition and questionable replacements.

Once feared for it’s ferocious pass rush, the Cowboys defense has just one sack in the past two games and gave up a season-high 318 yards passing and four touchdowns in last Sunday’s shocking 40-34 overtime loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

“That game exposed several areas for us to work on,” owner Jerry Jones begrudgingly admitted on his radio show on 105.3 the Fan. “I look at it as a go-to-work, use these next three weeks to basically look at if we’re going to put different personnel in different places as well as how we’re implementing the personnel.”

Jerry Jones: Dak Prescott was outstanding in loss to Jaguars, we can win when he plays like that - Michael David Smith, ProFootballTalk

Prescott can’t win games by himself, although he certainly will try to accomplish the feat.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was very happy with the way quarterback Dak Prescott played in Sunday’s loss to the Jaguars.

“We can win with him playing like that to be trite. I thought he played outstanding,” Jones said, via the Dallas Morning News. “As we see, he wasn’t playing against chopped liver out there. And, so, I thought he did play really well. I thought he made good decisions. Overall we can — if he plays like that, we can win most games.”

Jones has complete confidence that if Prescott plays well, the Cowboys are capable of beating anyone in the NFL.

Cowboys ‘Discipline’: Kelvin Joseph Faces Competition to Start; What CB Must ‘Learn’ - Adam Schultz,

Will the Cowboys finally get a return on the second-round investment they made in Joseph?

Dallas Cowboys cornerback Kelvin Joseph did not have the best outing against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday. The 40-34 overtime loss moved Dallas to 10-4 and highlighted the defenses struggles as they deal with various injuries.

Joseph allowed two touchdowns on three targets for a total of 69 yards before being pulled from the game. With the young corner biting on a vicious double move from Jaguars receiver Zay Jones, bringing the most heat.

But for defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, Joseph has done some good things and stated that no one wants a player to get beat the way he did.

“There’s definitely been things that I’ve seen from him that I have liked,” Quinn said. “He’s a good tackler, can make a play on the ball. You don’t want to see anyone get beat on a double move that goes for a big one because that comes down to your eye discipline.”

This simple Cowboys adjustment would unlock struggling Micah parsons - Jerry Trotta, The Landry Hat

If anyone can make the right adjustments, its defensive coordinator Dan Quinn.

Remember the good ‘ole days? You know, during the Cooper Rush era when the Dallas Cowboys’ flaunted a top-five defense? While the defense has put together some strong performances since Dak Prescott returned, Micah Parsons and company have crashed back down to earth for most of the last two months.

What separated them from a good unit to a “great” one? The superstar play of Parsons, who entrenched himself as the Defensive Player of the Year frontrunner after racking up eight sacks and 14 QB hits in the first eight games.

Like any player, Parsons cooled off after the scalding hot start. But even his biggest supporters can admit his impact hasn’t been felt as much as it should the last couple games. We even think Micah himself would admit that.

While Parsons notched his 13th sack of the season in Sunday’s loss to the Jaguars, it marked his first QB takedown in three games. His splash plays that were commonplace early in the season, have been few and far between, even though he’s generating consistent pressure.

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