It was planned for the Green Bay Packers vs. Dallas Cowboys game in Week 10 to be a “Game of the Week”-style contest. The Cowboys fulfilled their obligation under the agreement. They are 6-2, have just returned from a bye week, and are attempting to catch the Philadelphia Eagles at the top of the NFC East. While everything is going on, Aaron Rodgers and the Packer’s offense have dropped five straight games.
The demoralizing 15-9 loss to the Detroit Lions is still fresh in Green Bay’s mind. Rodgers threw a career-high three interceptions in the game, all of which came in the red zone. Ironically, he had previously said that players who were suffering should be benched before that game. If he had to describe himself in the Cowboys game, do you think he would say the same thing?
The Cowboys are hoping to win their division and advance far in the playoffs, while the Packers are destined for obscurity. With Dak Prescott back at the helm, the offense has begun to look dynamic once more. Whether Tony Pollard or Ezekiel Elliott is in the backfield, Dallas’ running game remains effective. However, the Cowboys’ defense is what has elevated them to title contention.
Let’s look at the Cowboys’ Week 10 predictions for their matchup with the Packers since these two teams are moving in opposite directions.
FuboTV lets you stream live NFL games (click for a free trial).
4. Tony Pollard runs wild, again
Week 8 was missed by Ezekiel Elliott due to a minor knee ailment. The Cowboys decided to be conservative with the former All-Pro running back because they had a bye the following week. Pollard trampled over the Chicago Bears while he was away. On just 14 carries, he rushed for a career-high 131 yards and three scores.
The majority of football fans and media have agreed that Pollard is Dallas’ superior running back during the entire season. It is not an attack on Elliott. Simply put, he has been run into the ground and is past his prime. On the other hand, Pollard is a dynamic playmaker who is swift, elusive, and strong.
It was anticipated that Elliott would come back this week and reclaim his starting position. After a brief practice on Wednesday, however, Elliott seemed to imply that he would sit out this week once more.
The Packer’s defense was anticipated to be one of the strongest in the league. That hasn’t happened yet. With 138.6 rushing yards per game allowed, they are ranked 26th in the NFL. Pollard will likely finish with north of 100 yards and another touchdown, so I would anticipate another significant dose from him.
3. Cowboys’ defense sacks Aaron Rodgers 3 times
As I’ve already said, the Cowboys’ defense has been the difference-maker this season. They have excelled at getting to the quarterback in particular. With 33 sacks this year, Dallas is the NFL’s leader. Remember that they have had a bye week.
The Packers have had trouble keeping Aaron Rodgers safe throughout. One of the most under-pressure quarterbacks in the league, he has only been sacked 18 times. I believe that the rate might change on Sunday. The Cowboys’ front seven is unlike any that Green Bay has ever seen. Micah Parsons is having another fantastic year after his outstanding debut year. At the halfway point of the season, the majority of people believe he is in the lead for NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
The Packers’ inability to complete drives may have contributed to the Cowboys’ potential lead in this game. If that happened, Parsons and company might start the game and attack a depleted Green Bay offensive line.
This week, Rodgers will be sacked at least three times.
2. Packers RBs held to less than 100 rushing yards
The Packers’ desire to run the football is a known fact. They must run the football, which is why. It is the only way to make this offense successful. This year, Dallas has occasionally demonstrated that it can be exploited on the ground. But in order for that to happen, Aaron Jones would have to be the guy.
Jones suffered an ankle injury last week in the third quarter and did not return. He returned to practice on a limited basis and might be able to suit up. But even if he does, he will be nowhere near 100 percent. That is a big problem as he has been the only consistently productive player they have on offense. AJ Dillon, coming off a great rookie season, has fallen flat on his face this year. I mean that both figuratively and literally.
Dillon is a big back that needs to get a head of steam to hit the hole. This season, he has been hit behind the line of scrimmage seemingly as much as any tailback in the NFL. That’s led to a precipitous drop off yards after contact.
I would blame AJ Dillon’s decline from 3.37 to 3.06 to 2.84 yards after contact per att. from 2020-22 on small samples and a fall in the #Packers run block win% from 1st to 4th to 21st.
Except Aaron Jones leads the position with 3.71 YACon/Att this year.pic.twitter.com/r7DpvCm65C
— Scott Spratt (@Scott_Spratt) November 7, 2022
He is averaging just 2.84 yards after contact compared to the league-leading Jones with 3.71. With a hampered Jones and Dillon struggling, along with the Cowboys likely leading for a large portion of this game, it would make sense we see a lot of Rodgers dropbacks and fewer rushing attempts.
1. Cowboys improve to 7-2 with a win over the Packers
It’s hard to find many reasons why Green Bay should even stay in this game. Maybe Dak Prescott turns the ball over a couple of times, or maybe there is a big special team play. But it’s going to take all of that for this just to be a game. Let’s face it. The Packers are a bad football team. The Cowboys are a good football team coming off a bye.