This week Carolina will visit the Cowboys after their tough loss to the New York Giants. The Cowboys absolutely need a win to restore some confidence in themselves. However this doesn’t look to be an easy task as the Panthers will be looking to bounce back from an 0-2 start.
By the numbers this Carolina team is anything but impressive. Against the run the Panthers are giving up a threatening 168 yards per game. This is very good news for a Cowboys team that is averaging 7 yards per carry, and has averaged 184.5 yards per game over the first two games.
Although Marion Barber’s status is up in the air for the Monday night game, the Cowboys will still be strong in the run game with second year backs Felix Jones and Tashard Choice. Thus far this season the Panthers are -5 in turnover ratio, with Jake Delhomme throwing 5 int’s already this season, and the Carolina running backs have fumbled three times this season losing two of them. Although the Cowboys have yet to get a takeaway, look for them to create turnovers against this Carolina team.
A big key to the game for the Cowboys is getting pressure on the quarterback. While it is never easy, the Cowboys should be able to find success in the pass rush as the Panthers have already given up 6 sacks in two games.
The Cowboys have not been very good against the pass thus far, and will have to improve if they wish to come away with the win. However, the defense will be tested in the running game too, as the Panthers have two very good running backs in Williams, and Stewart. While it may not be as good as the Cowboys, the Panthers are still rushing for a very solid 4.2 yards per carry, and DeAngelo Williams is a threat to take it the distance at any time.
If the Cowboys have any hopes of rebounding from a tough loss, and look to get this season rolling in the right directions, they will have to focus on the fundamentals. Rely on the run more on early downs, and keep Tony Romo out of unnecessary passing situations to eliminate some of the detrimental turnovers. They will have to maintain discipline on defense and wrap up on tackles. If the Cowboys can do this, then they will have no problem handling a troubled Carolina team.
Cowboys 31 Panthers 17