Dallas Cowboys

The landscape has changed since the Cowboys’ first meeting with the Redskins

Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins is having a good season even though the team’s 5-6 record doesn’t show it. The Redskins lost to the Dallas Cowboys in their first meeting this season 33-19.
Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins is having a good season even though the team’s 5-6 record doesn’t show it. The Redskins lost to the Dallas Cowboys in their first meeting this season 33-19. rmallison@star-telegram.com

In their first meeting on Oct. 29, the Dallas Cowboys beat the Washington Redskins 33-19 while in the middle of a three-game winning streak.

Thursday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, they’ll play their second game against each other this season with the Cowboys (5-6) on a three-game losing streak.

Washington (5-6) was 3-3 heading into the first meeting.

Both teams are on the outside of most playoff scenarios with five games left to play in the regular season.

Here’s a look at the Redskins:

Cousins' time

Kirk Cousins is having another solid season and will be in line for a hefty pay day with the Redskins or elsewhere. Cousins has already thrown for more than 3,000 yards this season, and has a 19-to-6 touchdown-to-interception ratio. He also has a 101.1 passer rating on the season, and he has thrown for more than 300 yards in two of the past three games. Cousins has had solid passing statistics against the Cowboys, but owns a 1-5 record against them in six career games.

Local threat

Mansfield Legacy’s Josh Doctson has gotten off to a slower start – partly due to injuries – than most expected when the Redskins drafted him in the first round. But he has shown an ability to be a threat in the red-zone. Doctson caught a touchdown pass against the Cowboys when these two played earlier this season, and he has four on the season (including on Thanksgiving night versus the New York Giants). Doctson is still searching for his first 100-yard receiving game and it might come against what has become a susceptible Cowboys secondary.

Quarterback Phillip Rivers was sharp and so were the Los Angeles Chargers in their 28-6 win over the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving at AT&T Stadium.

Containing Crowder

Speedy receiver Jamison Crowder has quickly become Cousins’ favorite target. Crowder leads the team with 561 receiving yards, and he has two 100-yard receiving games this season (including one against the Cowboys). Crowder can be a match-up problem. The Redskins other top threat? Veteran tight end Vernon Davis, who has 527 yards, but failed to record a reception on Thanksgiving. The Redskins lost one of their top receiving threats, running back Chris Thompson, to a season-ending injury.

Interception hounds

Dak Prescott has been intercepted five times in the past two games. That’s got to be music to the Redskins’ ears, as they have 12 interceptions (tied for fifth-most in the NFL) on the season. Cornerback Kendall Fuller leads the team with four, including intercepting the New York Giants’ Eli Manning on Thanksgiving. Safety D.J. Swearinger has three. In defense of Prescott, though, he has yet to throw an interception in any of his three career games against the Redskins.

Close vs. Cowboys

The Cowboys are reeling with three blowout losses by at least 20 points. The good news? This game tends to always be close even though the Cowboys took the first match-up 33-19 this season. Since 2010, 10 of the 15 games have been decided by one score. That will put added emphasis on the special teams. Redskins kicker Nick Rose missed a point-after attempt and field goal in the first match-up, but he has been perfect ever since (seven of seven on PATs and 11 of 11 on field goals).

Drew Davison: 817-390-7760, @drewdavison

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