The Cowboys are simply the better team with superior talent at each marquee position. If Dak Prescott and Co. take care of the ball while exhibiting patience and discipline against Lovie Smith’s soft zone defense, they could methodically pick apart the Texans with an efficient effort.
Cowboys Vs Texans Game Preview
Cowboys Key Notes
Cowboys Corner Kelvin Joseph
Defensive coordinator Dan Quinn said Kelvin Joseph will get the first chance to fill the void due to his experience over rookie standout DaRon Bland and second-year man Nahshon Wright. Bland, filling in for Jourdan Lewis at the nickel spot, could be an option to slide outside as well. The Cowboys also have Kendall Sheffield on the practice squad.
Over the last five games, the Cowboys are averaging nearly 40 points a game. Those points came against some pretty solid defenses too, including the Bears before the trade deadline, the Packers, Vikings, Giants and Colts. Between Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, and Tony Pollard, plus CeeDee Lamb and a surging Michael Gallup, the Texans will have their work cut out for them.
Cowboys Corner Trevon Diggs
The Cowboys still rank second in the league in passing yards allowed this season. Trevon Diggs, while he hasn’t quite intercepted passes at the rate he did last season, he has clearly become a shutdown perimeter option. Even though the secondary has been hit with the injury bug this season, the outstanding play of safeties Malik Hooker and Donovan Wilson, who leads the team in tackles, has been a big boost to one of the best overall defenses in the league.
Texans Key Notes
Return of Number 10 For Houston
Davis Mills thrust back into starting role vs Cowboys
The news of the week for the Texans was a quarterback switch, Davis Mills gets the start versus the Cowboys. Head coach Lovie Smith announced the move on Wednesday morning. He pointed to Mills’ performance at the end of last season as a parallel.
“When he came back the next time last year, the second time, he played a lot better. If you’re a competitor, when you’re not playing your best ball, I keep going back to the baseball comparison, sometimes you don’t have it, and you need to just take a step back.” Lovie Smith – Houston Texans
Mills is hoping for “similar results to last year” and explained what he did while he wasn’t the starter.
“These past two weeks really allowed me to just sit back and continue to learn. Shaping my thoughts, pre-snap. Seeing what you need to see, mentally. Kind of have that pre-snap checklist every play, based on what play we’re given on offense. Safety, slot defender, see the shell of the defense, and know what you need to see on any given play.” Davis Mills – Houston Texans
Run With What Works
Can The Cowboys Slow Down, Houston Texans Running Back Dameon Pierce?
Dameon Pierce and the Texans bounced back in the early part of the loss to Cleveland. The rookie running back picked up 57 of his 73 yards in the first half against the Browns. Smith said after the game that the Texans should’ve given him the ball more. Keeping that early success going isn’t too complicated, according to Pierce.
“Run what works with us. What works well against their defense. They’ve got some disruptive guys up front, so we’re going to have to have to account for them. Just keep it simple. Keep it north and south.” Dameon Pierce – Houston Texans
Pierce has 861 rushing yards so far in 2022, and the Dallas run defense is 23rd-best in the NFL, giving up 4.6 yards per rushing attempt.
Quick Run Down Of The Other Top Players For Houston Texans
Brandin Cooks is an underrated WR1 with a consistent game as a “chain mover”, Cooks is the focal point of the Texans’ aerial attack. The veteran pass catcher is a crafty playmaker with precise routes and strong hands.
Jerry Hughes, Defensive End: Hughes remains a legitimate pass-rushing threat off of the edge. The 34-year-old pass rusher has totaled eight sacks in 12 games while exhibiting the first-step quickness and burst that has helped him tally 65.5 career sacks in 13 seasons (196 games).
Christian Kirksey routinely corrals ball carriers and pass catchers as a sideline-to-sideline pursuer with outstanding instincts, awareness, and diagnostic skills. The Texans’ third-leading tackler is a force to be reckoned with between the hashes as a “see ball, get ball” defender.
Jalen Pitre leads the team with three interceptions while also ranking as one of the Texans’ leading tacklers (92) and most disruptive playmakers. The rookie standout is a stat stuffer with a knack for delivering big hits and producing turnovers.
Derek Stingley is the prototype at the position,he is a standout cover corner with superior size, speed, and athleticism, The rookie has flashed “shutdown” cover skills but needs more reps and experience to snuff out WR1s on the perimeter consistently.
Dallas Has No Interest in “Cheese” This Week
So it appears Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys are not the biggest proponents of cheese. No, not actual cheese. But rather the proverbial cheese that head coach Mike McCarthy spoke about early in the week and not eating it when facing the 1-10-1 Houston Texans.
The Cowboys do not want to eat that cheese and let their focus slip despite a looming Christmas Eve showdown against the Eagles wading in the distance.
“We have to show up each and every day. We have to get better each and every week. And each opportunity that we go out there is not easy. So if we’re not focused on those guys [and] giving [the Texans] their respect, as I said before, you’ll be very upset the next day.” Dak Prescott – Dallas Cowboys
“We’re just taking it one week at a time. Just keeping our foot on the gas. It’s never really on the opponent, it’s always on us in the display that we want to put out.” CeeDee Lamb – Dallas Cowboys
Which WR will have a bigger game? Cowboys CeeDee Lamb or Texans Brandin Cooks
The Cowboys are facing a young inexperienced team loaded with young up and coming talent. The time is now for Dallas not to over look a struggling Houston team who has yet to cement their talents this year. First year Texans’ Head Coach Lovie Smith is not a push over coach, he is regarded as one of the strongest defensive minds in league history, so the Cowboys better be prepared for a Texas size showdown. And that’s…”The Lex Of It“