Dallas Cowboys

5 things to watch in Cowboys-Lions game

Mr. Prescott

There’s not much that Cowboys rookie quarterback Dak Prescott hasn’t done this season. He showed last week against Tampa Bay that he is more than capable of bouncing back from a bad game. The key now is to string together solid performances and have the offense peaking down the stretch. Detroit has a middle-of-the-road pass defense, which means Prescott should have plenty of chances to showcase the offense.

Record watch

Rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott is a top contender for NFL Most Valuable Player, leading the league with 1,551 yards. He needs to average 129 the final two games to break Eric Dickerson’s rookie rushing record of 1,808 yards set in 1983. If Elliott is going to do it, he must have a strong game Monday. Elliott is coming off a career-high 159 rushing yards against Tampa Bay. He likely won’t carry a full load in the season finale at Philadelphia.

Record watch II

Tight end Jason Witten passed Terrell Owens on the all-time receptions list, and has an opportunity to become the Cowboys’ all-time leader in receiving yards this week. Witten needs 60 to break Michael Irvin’s record of 11,904. Witten has topped the 60-yard mark only twice this season.

Defensive matters

The Cowboys’ defense seems to be peaking at the right time. The defense didn’t have multiple sacks or takeaways in the first 12 games, but have done so the previous two. Linebacker Sean Lee has been credited with an astounding 168 tackles by the coaches to date, and defensive end David Irving continues to flash potential after a two-sack outing against the Bucs.

Staying home

The Cowboys have a chance to post their most wins at home since AT&T Stadium opened in 2009. If they win on Monday, that’ll be their seventh consecutive — something that has never been done at their billion-dollar home. More important, the Cowboys must establish their home-field dominance given that they have home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.

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