While there were many up and downs throughout the 2018 regular season, the Dallas Cowboys have accomplished their first goal: winning the NFC East. They clinched yesterday with a 27-20 victory over the Buccaneers at home.
This win proved to be even more important with the Eagles winning yesterday against the Texans. It was nice to clinch this week instead of having the pressure of a must win at the Giants next week. Now they can use that game to work on a few things and rest some players for the playoffs.
Now that the Cowboys are locked into the 4 seed in the NFC East (because of the Bears win yesterday) let’s look at what’s ahead for Dallas in the wild-card round.
The most likely opponent for Dallas in their first playoff game, the Seahawks are probably the most surprising playoff team in the NFL. Many familiar faces of the legion of boom are gone, but they’ve been solid on defense and have gotten back to their identity offensively. Russell Wilson has always been very good, but they are the #1 rushing attack in the NFL. Dallas played them in week 3, losing 24-13, but a lot has happened since then and that was in Seattle. The Seahawks are 4-4 on the road including a loss to the lowly 49ers. In this matchup, the Cowboys would be looking to get even for both the loss at the end of last year and the week 3 loss. This is the team I’d prefer Dallas to play.
A team that has also had an up and down season, but has firepower on both sides of the ball. Thielen and Diggs are the best receiving combo in the league, Cook and Murray are good RBS, and the defense is still very good. The offense has looked much better since the firing of OC John Defilippo. I’d still like the Cowboys in this game because they would be at home and they have had success in the past vs Kirk Cousins. Kirk Cousins has struggled in big games and has never won a playoff game in his career.
The Eagles have a shot to get to playoffs, but only as the 6 seed, so they would not play Dallas.
Dallas has a chance to play the Saints, Rams, or Bears in the divisional round. Obviously this game would be on the road, but anything can happen if this team gets hot.
It’s an achievement to win the division for a 3rd time in 5 years, but this team wants more and it remains to be seen how far they can go.