While the coaching staff is hard at work this morning analyzing footage from last night’s Cowboys game, their preparations started last week when most of the players were home with their loved ones.
Despite getting the monkey off their back by snapping a three-game losing streak in a “must-win” game against Oakland, this weekend’s game has more severe and direct implications.
The Redskins (1-3) sit behind the Cowboys (2-3) for first place in the division. You can fill in the obvious blanks of what that means.
“We started working on Dallas,” defensive coordinator Jim Haslett said last week. “They’re a little bit different than they were last year obviously, but same players and it’s always a heck of a football game.”
“We kind of hit a mulligan there to start the season,” defensive backs coach Raheem Morris said. “It was a nice little experience to get these guys out there acclimated with what we want to do and get some confidence for those guys and hopefully we come out like we did last year during the bye.
“The things they can do is look at their tape, we’ll put together all their ‘make a difference’ plays and show them those. We’ll also put together their mental mistakes and show them those as well and those are things we have to get better at.”
The defense, maligned to say the least, will have stiff competition against the Cowboys on Sunday. Yes, Tony Romo literally threw away the game, but he did throw for a career-high 506 yards and five touchdowns and at times outdueled MVP frontrunner Peyton Manning.
What does this mean?
Well in games after throwing at least four touchdowns, Romo has thrown 15 touchdowns to seven interceptions.
While he and Dez Bryant have seen a lot of DeAngelo Hall over the years, they have yet to play against Brandon Meriweather in a Redskins uniform and rookie David Amerson.
DeMarco Murray, off to a solid start, rushed for only 43 yards. Against the Redskins last season, he ran for 76 in Week 17.
Predicated on stopping the run, containing Murray will be key. In games at Jerry Land, Murray averages 87 yards. Not appearing in last season’s Thanksgiving Day matchup, the Cowboys struggled on the ground gaining only 35 yards.
With an extra week of preparation under the belt, the Redskins will try to zero in on Dallas’ weak spots and escape Texas with a much needed NFC East victory.
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