The Cowboys and Eagles are heading into a critical rematch for both teams this Sunday night. The lead spot in the NFC East is on the line, though neither Dallas’ nor Philadelphia’s work is done in the division with a win. While what happens the rest of the way in the regular season will be just as crucial, this game is still a key point for both as they prepare for the playoffs.
Dallas has closed the gap on Philly thanks to going 4-0 since their last meeting in Week 9. They stomped their way through the Giants, Panthers, and Commanders before finally passing a real test against the Seahawks. Meanwhile, the Eagles had their bye week and then two victories against the Chiefs and Bills. They finally fell last Sunday against the 49ers to set up the high-stakes rematch with the Cowboys.
Here are the NFC East standings after Week 13:
- Philadelphia Eagles 10-2 (3-0 in division)
- Dallas Cowboys 9-3 (3-1 in division)
- New York Giants 4-8 (2-2 in division)
- Washington Commanders 4-9 (0-5)
The Giants and Commanders have no relevance now beyond their remaining games against Dallas and Philadelphia. This is all about the big two. And as you can see, if Dallas gets the win this Sunday, they’ll tie up the Eagles in overall record at 10-3 and nullify the head-to-head tiebreaker by splitting the season series.
That would bring us to division records as the next factor on the tiebreaking procedure line. A Cowboys win puts them at 4-1 against the NFC East and the Eagles at 3-1, which means Dallas would take the lead in the division for now. It’s a slim margin but would technically be the deciding factor for the moment.
Unfortunately, Dallas could go 5-0 the rest of the season and still lose the NFC East. If the Eagles drop this one on Sunday but then win their last four, they’d finish the year with the same overall and in-division records as the Cowboys. That would bring their records against other NFC teams into the discussion; Dallas would be 9-3 while Philly would be 10-2.
This is why a random, stupid loss to Arizona in Week 3 could never be written off. You can see how easily it’s coming back to haunt the Cowboys now.
So no, just beating the Eagles this Sunday isn’t enough. Dallas still needs at least one more week to swing their way, and that won’t be easy with the disparity in the two teams’ schedules. Philly has the Seahawks, Cardinals, and two games with the Giants left to go. The Cowboys have a gauntlet of the Bills, Dolphins, and Lions before wrapping things up in Washington.
Still, even if they do wind up as a wild card, beating the Eagles this Sunday would do wonders for Dallas’ confidence and momentum heading into that stretch. While there were things to be happy about from the win over Seattle, the question of how the Cowboys can perform against another NFC elite is still out there. Even if they only get to enjoy the NFC East perch temporarily, that could still help their mental edge in the upcoming tournament.