Week 9 Matchups- Eagles Defense vs. Cowboys Offense

The Eagles defense had a chance to watch the Dallas offense perform miserably in Week 8 against one of the better defenses in the league in Seattle.  They hope to continue that trend this week on Sunday Night going up against Matt Cassel.  The full compliment of players should be at Bill Davis disposal besides probably Kiko Alonso who is still rehabbing a knee injury.  Dallas will have star wide receiver Dez Bryant back for his second straight week even after his profanity laced tirade following the Seattle defeat.  Bryant was completely shut down by Richard Sherman.  The Eagles defense was on the field all game the first time around in Week 2 and hopefully that is not the case this week or it will be another defeat.

Player to Watch: Quarterback Matt Cassel

Cassel has been brutal in his two starts as the Dallas signal caller once he replaced Brandon Weeden.  He’s a journeyman quarterback and is playing as such.  Cassel is likely locked into the starting job until Tony Rom returns simply because Jerry Jones traded away draft picks for him.  Weeden isn’t exactly a talent either so Cassel doesn’t really have much pressure to perform behind him.  The Eagles must avoid letting up like they did in Chip Kelly’s first year after the huge snow win versus the Lions at home.  The team went to the Metrodome and Cassel dissected them as a member of the Vikings without Adrian Peterson no less.  Cassel will turn to Jason Witten and Dez Bryant as his safety blanket which should be no surprise to the Eagles.

Player to Watch: Jordan Hicks

Hicks has been outstand this season as a third round rookie out of Texas.  This will be a homecoming of sorts for Hicks so hopefully he can focus on the task at hand rather than dishing out ticket requests.  We talked about this on the podcast there’s no way you can take him off the field as a starter at this point unless he gives you a reason to by his decline in performance.  Demeco Ryans and Mychal Kendricks will need to fight for the other snaps.  Hicks will likely draw the assignment of tight end Jason Witten along with running back Darren McFadden at times out of the backfield.  Like I mentioned earlier Cassel will be checking the ball down a lot so Hicks open field tackling will be important.

Nolan Carroll vs. Dez Bryant

Dez was visibly upset with reporters and more than likely his teammates as well after the disappointing 13-12 loss to Seattle at home.  Bryant was largely held in check by star corner Richard Sherman all game in his return to action from a broken foot.  The whole offense obviously misses Tony Romo and that goes without saying.  Nolan Carroll will likely draw the task of Bryant on Sunday as he’s been playing the best on the outside.  Byron Maxwell will see his fair share of Bryant as well, but right now I feel more comfortable with Carroll lined up across number 88.  Carroll has shown great ball skills and technique under new defensive backs coach Corey Undlin from Denver.  He made a great play against Ted Ginn in the Carolina game along with a pick six off Eli Manning on Monday Night.

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