The New York Jets are still searching for their 1st win of the season. Here’s the blueprint on how they can get it vs the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday.
The New York Jets may have the easiest remaining schedule in the NFL, but it won’t start off that way. Over the next two weeks the green and white will play the Dallas Cowboys (3-2) and the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots (5-0).
To make matters worse the team won’t be at full strength on Sunday. While the Jets will have Sam Darnold back at the helm, they will still be missing several key pieces including but not limited too: linebacker CJ Mosley (doubtufl) and tight end Chris Herndon.
Herndon did return from his four-game suspension, but head coach Adam Gase revealed that he hurt himself running routes on his own last Friday. Chris is currently deemed week-to-week and is unlikely to play on Sunday.
So how in God’s green earth can the Jets beat the Cowboys on Sunday? We got a chance to sit down with Steven Mullenax, Site Expert at The Landry Hat which is our FanSided sister network that covers everything relating to the Dallas Cowboys and he provided the blueprint and answered four other big questions heading into this matchup.
Next: What's latest with Zeke?
1. Ezekiel Elliott obviously missed some critical time in the offseason with his holdout, has he looked like himself so far this season? How would you evaluate his play so far?
SM: Traditionally, Elliott has been a slow starter. And you’d think the fact he missed all of training camp and the preseason that Zeke would have been rustier than he was. Despite his holdout, Elliott likely had the best start of his career. He might be leading the league in rushing if it wasn’t for a poor outing against the New Orleans Saints and the fact the Green Bay Packers posted a sizeable lead early in that contest, limiting his carries. All-in-all, I believe we are seeing exactly what you’d expect from Elliott. And I wouldn’t be surprised if he ended his fourth season leading the NFL in rushing yardage for the third time in his young career.
Next: Dak Prescott analysis
2. Dak Prescott has been asking for a ton of money and he proved it early in the season that he is worth every penny, when is a contract extension coming? What kinds of problems does he present defenses? What are his weaknesses?
SM: Let’s start with Prescott’s weaknesses. Accuracy, which has been much improved under new quarterbacks coach Jon Kitna. But we saw some of those bad habits return against the Packers when Dak feels really uncomfortable in the pocket. I believe his other weakness is field vision. There are times when receivers are running wide open but Dak isn’t looking their way or has quickly elected to check the ball down. Prescott is at his best when he’s a true dual-threat as he’s surprisingly quick for a player of his size. The Cowboys seem to win when Dak is free to take off and run for big gains on the ground, giving opposing defenses headaches. Finally, I do not believe a contract extension is coming anytime soon. Prescott has bet on himself and will try to earn an elite-level deal with his improved play this season.
Next: Cowboys D (strengths, weaknesses)
3. How good is the Dallas Cowboys defense? Who are the straws that stir the drink on that side of the ball?
SM: This is a group that was elite last season. Through five games this year, they don’t look elite. In fact, they’ve looked downright average at times. But they still have all their playmakers from last year plus added another pass rusher in Robert Quinn. Whether this unit is fully-healthy or not is a major question. They have the talent to be a top-five unit, but their execution wanes at times. As for who is the defender that stirs the drink in Big D, that’s clearly defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence. His ability to penetrate and get pressure on opposing quarterbacks is key to this defensive scheme’s success. When Lawrence has an off day, the entire defense has an off day.
Next: Blueprint on beating Dallas
The Jets Zone w/ @BoyGreen25 feat: @rjochoa of @BloggingTheBoys:– Full preview #DALvsNYJ.– Full analysis of #DallasCowboys weapons on offense, defense.– Why #TakeFlight should be wishing the #Cowboys luck.– Tony Romo = Sam Darnold comparison. #Jets https://t.co/PMwhqOhmDj
— The Jets Zone (@TheJets_Zone) October 9, 2019
4. Give us the blueprint, how do you beat the Dallas Cowboys? What are the things you have to do well?
SM: Based on their previous matchup against the Packers, you’d have to say run defense is the Cowboys’ biggest weakness. Of course, this unit did a good job of keeping Saints running back Alvin Kamara in check the week before. So that’s more based on their discipline and ability to execute the gameplan. Which as I explained before, wanes from time to time. The weakest positional unit on the entire roster is likely at safety, which could be exploited both through the air and on the ground. Offensively, it’s the Cowboys’ offensive line. Despite its massive star power, it is riddled with injuries and questionable depth. When this unit breaks down, the entire offense stalls.
Next: Final prediction
5. What’s your prediction for this contest? How do you see this one playing out?
SM: Despite the Cowboys’ recent woes, this is still a team that won its first three games. Although the level of competition is in question, no one questions the talent across the roster. And the Cowboys two defeats did come at the hands of NFC’s best teams, whom both have a record of 4-1. The Jets, on the other hand, are winless. And despite the fact New York is getting their star quarterback back, Dallas should still be the favorites to win this matchup. Dallas Cowboys 41, New York Jets 23.