5 takeaways from Washington's Week 7 win over the Dallas Cowboys
The Washington Football Team ran away with a victory against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 7.
The Dallas Cowboys and the Washington Football Team have one of the longest rivalries in the history of the NFL. They NFC East foes have played each other 120 times, with the Cowboys leading the series 73-45-2.
They met again on Sunday, both teams struggling but also still in the race for the division crown. Washington prevailed in dominant fashion, 25-3.
Washington ran away with this game early. They came out and dominated the line of scrimmage and did not allow the Cowboys to get into a rhythm. Washington moved from third in the NFC East to second place.
The outcome sets up a huge game next weekend between the Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles. Washington has to feel good about this game because they have shown that they are not out of the race.
5. The Cowboys' offensive line needs to get healthy
The Cowboys only had one of their regular starting offensive linemen, Connor Williams, in the lineup against Washington. Brandon Knight, Zach Martin and Tyron Smith all were out with injuries, which played a huge factor in the loss to Washington.
Dallas only rushed for 86 yards on 26 carries. The Cowboys offense is struggling to get into any type rhythm because of injuries on the offensive line. The Cowboys are also missing a huge piece to their offense with the absence of QB Dak Prescott.
Injuries have plagued the Dallas Cowboys offense and as long as the offensive line is unhealthy, they will struggle to move the football. The Dallas offense relies heavily on their running game and RB Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard have absolutely no running lanes. If the Cowboys want to get back into the race for the NFC East they must get their line back to full strength.
4. Washington's defensive line is full of elite talent
Washington came into the game knowing one thing: Their defensive line is full of elite talent, meaning they could capitalize on the Cowboys' injuries. The defensive line came out and made a statement early by sacking Dallas QB Andy Dalton and causing a safety.
Washington's defensive front would get to the Cowboys quarterbacks six times throughout the game. Chase Young is continuing to show Washington that they made a great pick when they selected him second overall in this year's NFL Draft. Washington's defensive front seven played an almost perfect game against the Dallas Cowboys.
3. How can the Cowboys stay in the hunt for the NFC East?
The Cowboys will need their backup quarterback Andy Dalton to play next weekend against the Eagles.
Dalton exited the game against Washington in the third quarter after a hard head-to-head hit. Dalton was taken to the locker room to go through the concussion protocol tests. The Cowboys will need him to pass all the tests and play next weekend.
Dallas will also need their offensive line to step up and give Ezekiel Elliott and Pollard running lanes. If the Cowboys cannot run the football their offense will not move. Dallas relies so much on their rushing game to open up their passing game.
Head coach Mike McCarthy and offensive coordinator Kellen Moore need to let Andy Dalton loose. The Cowboys need to make Dalton feel like this is his team now and that he is not just keeping the seat warm for Dak Prescott. The Cowboys have to remember that Dalton led the Bengals to the playoffs with less talent. If the Cowboys cannot get their running game going then they must let Dalton loose to win them games.
2. Washington's offense did everything right
Washington came into the game against the Cowboys with the worst rushing offense in the NFL. Washington was only averaging 82.2 rushing yards per game. The offense of Washington went into halftime with 126 rushing yards on 17 carries.
Washington was led in rushing by Antonio Gibson. Gibson rushed 20 times for 128 yards and a touchdown. This was huge for the Washington offense because before this game against the Cowboys, they had not had a single player rush for over 60 yards in a game. Washington used all three of their running backs in this football game, and all three backs were successful at running the ball.
QB Kyle Allen also had an amazing performance for Washington. Allen threw for 194 yards and 2 touchdowns and had a quarterback rating of 111.1. Washington's offense couldn't do anything wrong in this game. They knew the Cowboys weakness and capitalized on it.
1. The Cowboys defense will hold them back from winning the NFC East
The Dallas Cowboys defense has been their downfall all season long. Washington proved that to be right once again on Sunday. The Dallas defense gave up 126 rushing yards in the first half to the worst rushing team in the NFL.
Washington has failed to score over 20 points all season. The Cowboys defense gave up 25 points to the Washington offense. If the Cowboys defense did not make a goal line stand on the first drive it could have been 32 points for Washington.
Dallas needs the new additions to their defense to step up and start playing football. The linebackers for the Dallas Cowboys have been banged up this season, but they're the centerpiece to this Cowboys defense. Something will need to change for the Dallas Cowboys defense or they could be in for a long ride for the rest of the season.