With their backs against the wall, the Colts kept their season alive. They casually downed the might Texans, ending their nine game win streak. This week, the Colts, again, face a team from Texas with the longest win streak in the NFL. The Dallas Cowboys enter Lucas Oil with a five game win streak, including a marquee win over the New Orleans Saints. Their last loss was to the Titans, so let’s hope the Colts can make an AFC South loss sandwich out of the Cowboys.
G Mark Glowinski (Ankle)
S Mike Mitchell (Calf)
LB Skai Moore (Neck)
S Clayton Geathers (Knee)
TE Ryan Hewitt (Ribs)
WR T.Y. Hilton (Ankle)
TE Mo Alie-Cox (Calf)
T Anthony Castonzo (Knee)
S Malik Hooker (Hip)
DT Margus Hunt (Knee)
WR Dontrelle Inman (Shoulder)
C Ryan Kelly (Knee)
LB Darius Leonard (Finger/Shoulder)
C/G Quenton Nelson (Back)
DE Jabaal Sheard (Knee)
DL David Irving (Ankle)
G Zack Martin (Knee)
TE Geoff Swaim (Wrist)
WR Tavon Austin (Groin)
DE Randy Gregory (Not injury related)
LB Sean Lee (Hamstring)
WR Lance Lenoir Jr. (Illness)
T Tyron Smith (Neck)
WR Cole Beasley (Foot)
CB Anthony Brown (Hand)
RB Ezekiel Elliot (Shoulder)
G Xavier Su’a-Filo (Ankle/Thumb)
Colts’ Pass Rush vs Cowboys’ Offensive Line
Once heralded as the best line in the NFL, the Cowboys line has lost steam this season. The injuries have piled up for this line: No Zack Martin, Travis Frederick, and maybe Tyron Smith. Without those three All-Pros, the Cowboys feature an unspectacular line. When pressured, Dak Prescott is not the same player when he is not under pressure. Unlike the elite quarterbacks in the league, he crumbles under intense pressure.
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Quietly, the Colts’ defensive line has been one of the better ones this season. Spearheaded by the recent domination by Denico Autry, the Colts have been making the lives of opposing quarterbacks tough. Playing against backup guards, he and Tyquan Lewis will need to generate penetration on the interior, breaking the integrity of the Cowboys’ pocket. Off of the edge, Kemoko Turay and Jabaal Sheard need to keep Prescott’s mobility contained. Keeping Prescott shaken up will be key to slowing down Dallas’ offense.
Amari Cooper vs Colts’ Cornerbacks
Last week, Amari Cooper torched the Eagles for 217 yards and three touchdowns, including the game winner. Since trading for Cooper six weeks ago, the Cowboys are 5-1 and Cooper has been one of the most productive wideouts in the NFL. He gives the Cowboys a new dimension: an elite vertical threat and a guy who is touch to check one on one.
Last week, the Colts held superstar receiver DeAndre Hopkins to 36 yards. It was more than excellence from a single corner: the whole defense combined to stop him. As good as Kenny Moore has been as of late, he isn’t built to cover Cooper alone. The Colts need to work as a unit to keep Cooper from breaking big plays and giving the Cowboys a spark.
The Colts keep marching towards the postseason, knocking off the Cowboys on their way.
Ben Pfeifer is the Managing Editor of the Colts for Full Press Coverage, the AFC South Division Editor, and head NBA editor. Want to continue the discussion? Contact Ben Pfeifer on Twitter @Ben_Pfeifer_, @FPC_NBA and @FPC_Colts.