Sunday Night NFL Preview
Sunday Night NFL Preview. Cowboys and Redskins renew rivalry
Both the Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys lost their season-opening contests last week. Barring a rare tie, one of those teams will grab their first victory of the year this week when they battle in the Sunday night contest (8:15pm E.T.) at Texas Stadium.
The Redskins were blanked in the fourth quarter last week as they fell by a score of 19-16 to the visiting Minnesota Vikings on Monday Night Football. Washington QB Mark Brunell couldn't get much going on offense, completing 17-of-28 pass attempts for 163 yards in the air, with no TD strikes and no interceptions. Clinton Portis, nursing a shoulder injury, scored the team's lone touchdown, but only picked up 39 rushing yards.
The Cowboys got a touchdown out of Terrell Owens in their Week 1 contest, but that fourth-quarter score proved to be meaningless in a 24-17 road loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Dallas quarterback Drew Bledsoe had a terrible game against the Jags, going 16-of-33 for 246 yards passing, with the one TD strike and three interceptions. Owens had six catches for 80 yards in the loss, and Terry Glenn caught four balls for 81 yards.
So both the Redskins and the Cowboys are currently 0-1 straight-up, and 0-1 against-the-spread as well. For Week 2 the oddsmakers have Dallas pegged as a 6-point home favorite, with the total hovering around 37 points. Washington won both meetings between these teams last year (35-7 at home in December, and 14-13 on the road in September), and covered both times. One game was an OVER play, the other an UNDER play, and it was the first season series sweep for Washington since 1995. The Redskins, though, have not won two straight contests in Dallas since the late eighties.
On the injury front, the Redskins have more issues than the Cowboys. Portis is still on the injury report as questionable with his shoulder troubles for Week 2, although he's expected to get an increased workload this week. CB Shawn Springs, who is coming off abdominal surgery, is listed as doubtful versus the Cowboys, while S Pierson Prioleau was placed on IR with a torn ACL, and is out for the season. That could spell trouble for the Redskins' secondary, which will be asked to contain Owens in Dallas this weekend.
For the Cowboys, kicker Mike Vanderjagt was not included on the team's initial injury report this week, so he's expected to be available on Sunday night; whether or not Bill Parcells plays the flaky Vanderjagt remains to be seen. And Bledsoe isn't hurt, but another poor outing could find the veteran QB getting benched in favor of Tony Romo.
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