Philadelphia Eagles vs. Dallas Cowboys: NFL Week 14 Pre-Game Analysis

This isn’t the same Dallas Cowboys under coach Wade Phillips.  Now to the Eagles-Cowboys pre-game analysis…

Quarterbacks:

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick has shown he can be jarred into throwing interceptions, like he has done the past few games with near-interceptions by the defensive backs. This week will be no different, with the Cowboys pass rush that disrupted Indianapolis ColtsPeyton Manning in their last game. Michael Vick has thrown an interception in the past two games, despite maintaining a 94+ quarterback rating.  Dallas Cowboys Jon Kitna is more interception-prone. He has 11 touchdowns and 8 interceptions to date and a 89.5 quarterback rating.  Vick and the Eagles have the edge in this game.

Running Backs:

Philadelphia Eagles LeSean McCoy currently has 823 rushing yards and 7 rushing touchdowns and additionally, he’s been functional as a receiver having 534 yards receiving and 2 touchdowns to date. The Cowboys Tashard Choice had a 100-yard game with 1 touchdown in the game previously against the Indianapolis Colts. Felix Jones has 531 yards and no touchdowns.  The Eagles get the edge, but Choice could give the Eagles defense trouble.  (And as a side note, it’s a bit disturbing that Michael Vick has one less rushing touchdown than LeSean McCoy.)

Wide Receivers:

The Eagles wide receivers Jeremy Maclin and DeSean Jackson have 1,582 yards and 13 touchdowns between them.  They are averaging a combined 17.3 yards per reception.  The Cowboys wide receivers Mile Austin and Roy Williams have 1,305 yards and 10 touchdowns between them. They are averaging 14.6 yards between the both of them.  The Eagles get the edge.

Tight Ends:

Eagles Brent Celek has been used more, as the Eagles wide receivers have been facing double coverage. Celek has currently 342 yards, 3 touchdowns and averaging 11.4 yards per reception.  Meanwhile, Cowboys Jason Witten has been shown passed to primarily by Kitna.  Witten has 702 yards, 4 touchdowns and 10.8 yards per reception. The Cowboys get the edge in this one.

Defenses:

The Eagles defense is ranked 17th in the pass and 13th against the run.  On the other hand, the Cowboys defense is ranked 28th in the pass and 16th against the run.  The Eagles defense obviously gets the edge, particularly with Kitna’s tendency to throw interceptions.  However, things have changed since Wade Phillips left. A run-heavy offense will tire out the Eagles defense. The Eagles still maintain their edge over the Cowboys, but they are facing a “new” Cowboys offense.

Coaches/Intangibles:

Eagles coach Andy Reid will favor the pass, and Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett will seemingly favor balance, although he uses more of his available resources than Reid does. Michael Vick complained of late hits, and he wants to “be treated fairly.”  Unfortunately, the Cowboys defense and other defenses on the Eagles somewhat tough schedule are enjoying this. Vick should get some unexpected pressure and sudden blitzes.  The Cowboys defense is playing inspired, after bothering Colts Peyton Manning into 4 interceptions in their last game. The Cowboys get the slight edge.

The Edge:

This game will be closer than people think, and Vick will still have a target on his back.  27-24 Philadelphia Eagles.

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