The playoff hunt heats up as the NFL Schedule rolls into Week 13 as the Washington Redskins head to Dallas to take on the Cowboys to open up the action On Thursday Night Football. For these two teams Thursday Night’s showdown is a must win contest for each team as they both sit at 5-6 with an outside chance of staying alive in the NFC Playoff picture.
Each of these teams enter this contest on different sides as the Redskins rode a strong performance from Kirk Cousins, Samaje Perine and Jamison Crowder to knock off the New York Giants on Thanksgiving Day. Cousins finished with 242 yards with two touchdown passes, Perine hit the 100 yard mark on the ground while Crowder pulled in seven catches for 141 yards and a key touchdown.
As the Redskins bounced back to get within a game of an even record the Cowboys lost their third straight contest to fall to 5-6 on the year. The latest loss for the Cowboys came on Thanksgiving Day as the San Diego Chargers ran away with a 28-6 win. In the loss, the Cowboys secondary could not slow down the pass as Philip Rivers threw for 434 yards with three touchdown passes.
Now these two teams square off in a rematch of their week 8 contest that saw the Cowboys come away with a key 33-19 win behind a big game from Ezekiel Elliott. This time around the Redskins will have an easier task as the Cowboys will still be without Elliott who as he continues to serve his six game suspension.
With that said let’s take a look at the Keys to The Game for both the Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys for Week 13 of the 2017 NFL Football Schedule.
Washington Redskins – Run Perine Run
The Redskins have a few big keys to win this matchup including shutting down Dak Prescott on the offensive side of the ball. That said the biggest key for their success this weekend will come on the ground and with rookie running back Samaje Perine. Perine who has taking over the roll as the featured back after key injuries to the Redskins running game has impressed over the past two games rushing for over 100 yards in both games to go with one touchdown on the ground. If Perine can move the chains, it will force the Cowboys to change direction on the offensive side of the ball.
Dallas Cowboys – Find Rhythm on Offense
Since the loss of Elliott the Cowboys offense has struggled to find consistency on the ground allowing opposing defenses to focus on shutting down Dak Prescott. Since, Elliott’s suspension started Prescott has thrown for 500 yards with zero touchdowns and five interceptions. If the Cowboys want to right the ship, they will need to find some sort of rhythm on offense in this game. That rhythm starts with the Cowboys turning to their running game while allowing Rod Smith to slowly emerge as a threat on the ground opening up the teams passing attack. If the Cowboys can run the ball the offense will come together for a key win in Week 13.
Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys (+2.5)
Over/Under Line – 44.5
As these two teams get set for their NFC East showdown on Thursday Night Football they both have struggled against the spread this season. Entering this contest, the Cowboys are just 5-6 against the spread overall with most of those struggles coming at home (2-4 against the spread). Along with struggling at home the Cowboys have failed to cover the spread in four straight Thursday Night contests. Meanwhile the Redskins are just 5-6 against the spread this season while going 3-2 away from Fed Ex Field. Those struggles have also come against teams in the NFC East as they are just 1-4 dating back to last season.
NFL Football Pick of the Week – Washington Redskins