NFL 2019 (Week 12): Dallas Cowboys at New England Patriots

Russell S. Baxter

NFL 2019 (Week 12): Dallas Cowboys at New England Patriots

By Pete Fasulo

Special to Pro Football Guru

This Week 12 match-up pits two solid teams against each other. The Cowboys have won three of their last four and are sitting in first place in the NFC East with a one-game lead over the Philadelphia Eagles. The 9-1 defending Super Bowl champs are coming off a win over those Eagles last week where New England won a defensive battle, 17-10. They have a two game lead in the AFC East over the Buffalo Bills.

Patriots: Led by the venerable Tom Brady the New England offense has been a juggernaut this season, scoring 28.7 points per game and amassing an average of 359.9 yards of offense per tilt. Brady has completed 63.7 percent of his passes for 2,752 yards and 14 touchdowns to only five interceptions. Running backs Sony Michel, Rex Burkhead and James White have been solid. Michel leads the team with 515 rushing yards and six scores. The receiving corps, led by wide receivers Julian Edelman, Philip Dorsett and tight end Ben Watson, has been strong. Dorsett has scored five touchdowns and Edelman has tallied four. On defense, expect the Pats to slow down Dallas as Bill Belichick’s team has given up just 10.8 points per game this season. Linebackers Jamie Collins and Dont‘a Hightower lead the team in tackles with 48 and 41 respectively, while the New England secondary featuring Stephon Gilmore, Jason McCourty and Devin McCourty has been stellar. Expect the Patriots’ defense to give Dak Prescott fits all day.

Cowboys: The Cowboys started off the season 3-0, yet many believed that was due to facing inferior opposition. They are just 3-4 since that initial stretch. Prescott leads the ‘Boys offense and has been solid this year. He has completed 67.7 percent of his passes for a ridiculous 3,221 yards, 21 touchdowns and nine interceptions. Running back Ezekiel Elliott has rushed for 833 yards and seven touchdowns. Wide receiver Amari Cooper has reeled in 56 catches for 886 yards and seven touchdowns. Michael Gallup and Randall Cobb have also had a good 2019 season with three touchdowns each. On defense, the Cowboys are led by a solid linebacking corps that includes Jaylon Smith (90 tackles), Leighton Vander Esch (72 tackles) and veteran Sean Lee. Dallas has held their opponents to only 19.7 points per game. In addition, Dallas’ defense has held their opposition to only 32.5 percent on third-down conversions. Although, expect them to have their hands full with the New England offense.

Prediction: This should be a good game between two first-place teams. Look for a methodical approach to New England’s offense that should be able to push the Cowboys’ defense to limits they have not faced yet this season. While Dallas will definitely keep it close early, expect the Patriots to make their patented halftime adjustments and pull this one out in the second half with relative ease.

New England Patriots 32, Dallas Cowboys 20

Pete Fasulo (@LISportsFans) is a freelance writer covering business, music, and sports. He has written for music publications such as Revolver and Aural Fix. His sports writing career has been resurrected here after numerous years at The Torch and The Long Island Tribune (many moons ago).

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