The Dallas Cowboys will look to improve to 4-1 this Sunday afternoon as they travel west for a bout with the Los Angeles Rams.
After Dak Prescott’s Week 1 injury, if you told Cowboys fans their team would be fighting for that record going into Week 5, they would’ve called you crazy.
The sky was falling in Dallas after Prescott’s injury. But Cooper Rush and the Cowboys defense has positioned the squad nicely ahead of the matchup with the defending Super Bowl champion Rams.
Here’s how to watch the Week 5 showdown, and three keys to a fourth-consecutive victory:
Dallas Cowboys vs. Los Angeles Rams
- Kickoff time: Sunday, October 9th at 3:25 p.m.
- How to watch: FOX
- How to stream: fox.com
- Spread: Cowboys +5.5
- Over/under total: 43
Rams biggest weakness
One thing Los Angeles’ offense has failed to do through four games is establish the rushing attack. The Rams are averaging 68.5 rushing yards per game, the third-lowest mark in the NFL.
Los Angeles’ lead back is Darrell Henderson, who has 138 rushing yards this season. Behind Henderson is Cam Akers with 118th rushing yards.
This is a good matchup for a Cowboys defense that’s allowing 137.5 rushing yards per game, the sixth-most in the NFL. Last week, the Washington Commanders ran for 142 yards. This allowed Washington to hang around in the game until Dallas eventually pulled away in the fourth quarter.
The Rams lackluster run game should be a non-threat on Sunday. The Cowboys defense will need to make sure that’s the case so it can turn all the attention toward Rams QB Matthew Stafford and the passing attack.
Limit Stafford and Kupp
Father time seems to be catching up with Stafford. The 34-year-old leads the NFL with six interceptions.
Part of Stafford’s turnover woes can be attributed to the constant pressure he’s been under. The Rams have allowed 16 sacks, tied for the second-most in the NFL.
Meanwhile, the Cowboys have tallied 15 sacks, also tied for the second-most in the NFL.
But in Week 4, Commanders QB Carson Wentz was only sacked twice. This was mainly due to Washington’s game plan. The Commanders offense avoided big hits on Wentz by calling for lots of quick passes and play-action passes. But the Cowboys defense did a good job of stifling big plays from Washington’s wide receivers.
If the Rams deploy a similar game plan this week, Dallas will be tasked with containing one of most talented receivers in the NFL, Cooper Kupp. The reigning all-pro receiver is tied for the seventh-most yards after catch this season.
The Cowboys will need to provide extra attention to Kupp on Sunday, otherwise it will be a long day for Dallas’ defense.
No turnovers from Rush
Rush has done an excellent job in relief of Prescott, leading the Cowboys to a spotless 3-0 record while QB1 is out.
One of Rush’s best attributes is avoiding costly turnovers. Rush has 102 passing attempts this season and has yet to throw an interception, which leads the NFL.
But things were a bit dicey against the Commanders. Rush threw two interceptions in Week 4, but both were negated by defensive penalties.
The Cowboys offense has averaged just 17.8 points per game this season. The last thing Rush and Co. can afford to do is turn the ball over if they hope to leave SoFi Stadium with a win on Sunday.