This week's question posed by Hall of Fame running back Marshall Faulk is here. Here's the transcript:
Being Professional Grade means paying attention to the details. Philly and Dallas, with the division on the line, what detail right from the start will show us either: That Dallas is a different team from two weeks ago? Or that Philly is going to dominate again?
No need to really over-think this one. The Eagles dominated in the trenches the last time these two teams played.
Philadelphia's front seven kept the Cowboys' run game limited to 93 yards on 25 total attempts for a paltry 3.7 average. They also generated pressure on Dallas quarterback Tony Romo with four sacks, two quarterback hits, and 12 quarterback hurries.
On offense, the Eagles opened up big holes for LeSean McCoy. Philadelphia's star rusher finished with 159 yards and one touchdown on 25 carries for a whopping 6.5 average. Mark Sanchez also rushed for 28 yards on seven attempts. The Eagles quarterback benefited from great protection for most of the game.
Dallas doesn't come to Philadelphia as a totally different team. Yes, Tony Romo might be healthier than he was last time. Romo looked a little gun shy in the first matchup so he might play a little more aggressive. Yes, the Cowboys have a better record (6-0) than they do at home. But none of this changes the fact that the Birds matchup really well against this team. For all the hype that the Cowboys offensive line gets, Philadelphia's front seven is just as deserving (if not more) of high praise.
The Cowboys are still the very one-dimensional team they've been all season. They're nearly impossible to beat if they get NFL leading rusher DeMarco Murray going. They run the ball to set up the passing attack while also keeping their lackluster defense off of the field. It's a good plan that has worked for them. If the run game isn't working, however, it all shuts down very quickly.
The notion that games are won and lost in the trenches may sound cliché, but it's absolutely true in this case. It all comes down to execution.