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Cowboys vs Eagles: A fast facts and stats game preview for Week 14

Sunday should be fun.

Dallas Cowboys v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

The Dallas Cowboys game versus the Philadelphia has so many intriguing storylines for Dallas. In some ways it feels like a make-or-break game for the Cowboys. In other ways, it could be overcome by what happens by the end of the season. Let’s explore that.

If the Cowboys have any plans to win the NFC East, then this is a make-or-break game. Without a win this week, the Cowboys hopes of taking the division crown are doomed, not to mention the top seed in the NFC playoffs. So in that sense, it’s no doubt do-or-die.

My friend Tom Ryle argues that it’s make-or-break for the Cowboys psychologically. Another loss to the Eagles, at home even making it worse, combined with the beatdown from the 49ers earlier this season would relegate the Cowboys to second-tier status. They would now be unsure if they could beat the 49ers or the Eagles, something likely required in the playoffs. That’s tough to come back from.

But there is a way the Cowboys could lose, and still recover. If they drop the Eagles game then run the table with the Bills, Dolphins and Lions, plus an expected win over the Commanders, they would be on fire heading into the playoffs. Especially with wins over the Dolphins and Lions. The Cowboys would still have those 49ers/Eagles doubts, but they would be filled with swagger if they took out the Bills, Dolphins and Lions. That would be a strong launch into the post-season.

So in a lot of ways it feels make-or-break, but just remember that a loss doesn’t necessarily tank the Cowboys season. Still, who wants to think about losing to the Eagles?

The Cowboys are at home for this game where they absolutely dominate teams. They are on a four-game win streak and are playing an Eagles team coming off a bad loss. DraftKings Sportsbook has the Cowboys as 3.5-point favorites over the Eagles.

Let’s dive into some facts and figures.

Overall the Cowboys and Eagles have played 129 games against each other, with four of those being playoff games. The Cowboys lead the regular season 70-55, and lead 3-1 in the post-season. Of course the Cowboys lost the last meeting in Week 9 of this season at Philly, 28-23. Dallas has won four of the last six games between the two.

So why are the Cowboys having such a quality season, especially at home? Plenty of factors come into play, but by far the largest factor is the play of Dak Prescott. The Cowboys QB has the second-highest home passer rating at 126.8. He has 18 touchdown passes at home in six games. If you go back to the Cowboys last home game against the Eagles in 2022, played on Christmas Eve, Prescott has more than 250 yards passing in each of those seven games, plus has a 100+ passer rating in each. Only Brett Favre has ever matched that streak.

Prescott has multiple touchdown passes in all home games this season and that is the longest ongoing streak in the NFL currently. Tony Romo had a seven-game streak of multiple touchdown passes, a Cowboys record Prescott is looking to match.

Against the Eagles over his career, Prescott has a completion percentage of 67.3% and has 22 touchdowns while throwing eight interceptions. More recently, Prescott has 11 touchdowns and one interception in the past three Eagles games.

Against the NFC East in his career, Prescott has a 30-8 record. That's the second-most division wins by a quarterback since 2016, behind only Tom Brady's 31. Prescott has the most total touchdowns by a quarterback since 2016 with 132, besting Russell Wilson’s 129.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Cowboys offense has also been a juggernaut, and even the defense has pitched in with some defensive scores, including DaRon Bland’s record five pick-sixes this season.

Dallas has scored 40 points five times this year. They have scored more than 30 points in all six home games. If they hit 30 on Sunday, they would be the first NFL team to score 30+ points in their first seven home games of the season. With 40 points on Sunday, they would be the first team ever to score 40+ points in five consecutive home games.

Since head coach Mike McCarthy has been in Dallas, they’ve had 16 games with 40+ points, the most in the NFL. The next closest teams are the Bills and the Chiefs with eight each.

The Cowboys are first in the league for 10-play drives with 35, and first in points per game at 32.3. Dallas is second in third-down conversions rate at 48.5%. The reason for that number is Prescott leads the league for passer rating on third down at 117.2, and completion percentage at 72.8%.

Fast stats:

  • The Cowboys are tied for second in pressures with 205 per PFF. The Eagles allow the fifth-most pressures with 196.
  • If Micah Parsons hits 13 sacks this season, he will be only the second player to do that since 1982 in their first three seasons. The other was Reggie White.
  • Brandon Aubrey has 26 field goals in his rookie year. The Cowboys season record by a rookie is Richie Cunningham with 34 in 1997.
  • CeeDee Lamb, over his first four seasons, has had eight games with 10+ catches, only the fifth player to ever do that. He also has a touchdown catch in four straight games. One more and he would be the first Cowboy since Dez Bryant (2013) to accomplish that.
  • Jake Ferguson likes to play the Eagles. In three games he has 12 receptions for 155 yards and two scores. In the first game between the two this season he had seven catches and a score.

Team comparison stats:

Scoring Avg. (NFL rank): Dallas - 32.3 (1) Philadelphia - 27.4 (4)

Opp. Scoring Avg. (NFL rank): Dallas - 18.3 (4) Philadelphia - 24.0 (24)

Total Off. (NFL rank): Dallas - 380.4 (5) Philadelphia - 361.7 (9)

Rushing Off. (NFL rank): Dallas - 117.0 (11) Philadelphia - 126.0 (8)

Passing Off. (NFL rank): Dallas - 263.4 (3) Philadelphia - 235.7 (13)

Total Def. (NFL rank): Dallas - 287.1 (3) Philadelphia - 350.6 (22)

Rushing Def. (NFL rank): Dallas - 106.0 (12) Philadelphia - 90.3 (4)

Passing Def. (NFL rank): Dallas - 181.1 (5) Philadelphia - 260.3 (29)

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