The Cowboys Report

Cowboys collapse; Redskins up next

Dallascowboys.com

The Dallas Cowboys (7-8) came out with a disappointing performance on Sunday when they were defeated 17-9 by the Philadelphia Eagles (8-7). Dallas was lucky to only lose by one score as their offense was terrible, their defense wasn't able to stop anyone, and the coaching was even worse.

Recap

The Cowboys went three and out on their first two possessions while the Eagles quickly gained a 10-0 lead on their first two possessions.

Quarterback Dak Prescott was 25/44 for 265 and NO touchdowns. He also carried the ball one time for 7 yards and had zero turnovers. Not all of the offensive struggles can be put on Dak, as star receiver Amari Cooper didn't help much. He failed to do anything by catching four balls for 24 yards and killing fantasy players for the second week in row. Michael Gallup led the team with five catches for 98 yards and was the target on their last play of the game.

Pro Bowl running back Ezekiel Elliott was held in check. The Eagles defense only allowed him to rush for 47 yards on 13 carries, but he did have 7 catches for 37 yards. With both Dak and Zeke not being able to move the ball much, the Eagles were able to hold the ball for over 36 minutes and wear down the Dallas defense.

Dallas falls to (7-8) and now only have a 26.2% chance of winning the NFC East (according to ESPN's Football Power Index). In order for that to happen, the Cowboys have to beat the Washington Redskins (3-12) and the Philadelphia Eagles (8-7) have to lose to the New York Giants (4-11). If that happens, Dallas will win the NFC East via a tiebreaker over Philadelphia and will host a playoff game next week.

3 Things to Watch For

1.Ezekiel Elliott (Running Back): Zeke needs to come up big this week.He will be going up against the 4th worst rushing defense and I expect him to get 20+ touches for 100 yards and maybe a touchdown or 2.

2.Randall Cobb (Wide Receiver): With free agent to be Amari Cooper pulling a disappearing act over the last few weeks, it seems Cobb has become a great option for Dak over the middle of the field. He made some clutch catches in the 4th quarter last week. Let's see if he can keep up the momentum.

3.Kai Forbath (Kicker): Has now played 2 games as a Cowboy this year, and still has not missed a kick. He is now 6/6 on field goal attempts and is 5/5 on extra points. With the Dallas offense struggling, hopefully he will help keep them in the game with a few kicks.

Coming Up

Sunday afternoon, the Cowboys (7-8) will be at home taking on the Washington Redskins (3-12) at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. Kickoff is set for 3:25pm.The Cowboys need to come up with a win in order to keep their hopes of a postseason berth alive. I expect the Cowboys to ride Zeke to a victory as they keep their eye on the scoreboard of the Eagles game which also starts at 3:25pm.

If you have any fantasy leagues still going, the only must start players are:

Cowboys: Ezekiel Elliott (RB), Dak Prescott (QB), Michael Gallup (WR)

Redskins: Adrian Peterson (RB), Terry McLaurin (WR)

For you gamblers out there, the Cowboys are -11 and the over/under is 44.5.There is no way I could lay more than 10 points on Dallas with the way they just played. Washington +11 is the play here and I also lean on the over, the Redskins have been playing hard and I think they will push the Cowboys to score.

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Houston's losing streak extended to five games

With key Astros missing, Detroit completes the series sweep

An overall bad day for the Astros on Wednesday. Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

On Wednesday afternoon, the Astros received a big blow to their chances in the series finale against Detroit and potentially longer. Five players: Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez, Martin Maldonado, and Robel Garcia would all be moved to the IL due to health and safety protocols, leaving them scrambling to get a whole team together for the game against the Tigers.

The Astros would not be able to overcome both the loss of players and the onslaught of another strong start by Detroit in Wednesday's game which put them too far out front for Houston to come back from to avoid a series sweep.

Final Score: Tigers 6, Astros 4

Astros' Record: 6-6, third in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Michael Fulmer (1-0)

Losing Pitcher: Lance McCullers Jr. (1-1)

Tigers knock out another starter early

Detroit continued their success of making Houston's starter work hard in early innings, getting after Lance McCullers Jr., and giving him an early exit. After a lengthy fist, they broke through in the second getting two hits, a walk, a hit batter, and an RBI groundout to put up three runs on 34 pitches.

He would have a quicker 1-2-3 third, but after giving up a single, a walk, and hitting another batter to load the bases and reach 87 pitches, he would be removed in favor of Joe Smith. Smith would allow all three of the inherited runners to score, adding those runs to McCullers Jr.'s final line: 3.2 IP, 4 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 87 P.

Astros try to claw back into it

After Smith would go on to load the bases again in the inning, still with two outs, Houston made another pitching change to bring in Brandon Bielak to get the third out and stop the bleeding at 6-0. The Astros would get on the board in the fifth, getting a runner on base to set up a two-run homer by Jason Castro to cut the lead to 6-2.



Bielak remained in the game to try and eat up as many innings as possible. While he continued to hold the Tigers to their six runs through the six innings, the Astros clawed back into the game. In the bottom of the sixth, Houston put their first two batters on base with a walk and single before an RBI-single by Yuli Gurriel to make it 6-3. They would threaten for more but be held there for the time being.

Astros can't cash in, Tigers complete sweep

Ryne Stanek was Houston's next reliever in the top of the seventh, getting a 1-2-3 frame to keep it a three-run game, as did Brooks Raley in the eighth. In the home part of the inning, the Astros put their first two runners on base on an error and a walk, then loaded them with a one-out single by Carlos Correa. They'd waste their chance to make something happen, though, with an inning-ending double-play.

Ryan Pressly, who had no save opportunities in recent games, entered to get some work in the top of the ninth. He worked around a leadoff double for a scoreless inning, sending the 6-3 game to the bottom of the ninth. The Astros had yet another chance to make something happen, loading the bases with no outs to bring the go-ahead run to the plate. After two outs, Yuli Gurriel would bring one run in with a walk, but that's as close as they'd come, extending their losing streak to five games and getting swept by the Tigers.

Up Next: Houston will get a much-needed day off tomorrow to try and leave this poor homestand behind them. They'll pick things up in Seattle on Friday, with first pitch of the opener of three games at 9:10 PM Central. The expected pitching matchup is Jose Urquidy (0-1, 5.23 ERA) for the Astros and Yusei Kikuchi (0-0, 3.75 ERA) for the Mariners.

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