News & Analysis

NFL Week 16 PFF ReFocused: Philadelphia Eagles 17, Dallas Cowboys 9

The Philadelphia Eagles took control of the NFC East by beating the Dallas Cowboys 17-9 in Week 16 of the 2019 NFL season.

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PFF's ReFocused series features immediate takeaways from the two analysts who graded the game live. The two offer a detailed breakdown of the game's most notable performances before the grades and advanced stats are reviewed and finalized by Senior Analysts.

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Final Score

Philadelphia Eagles 17, Dallas Cowboys 9

Philadelphia Eagles

It wasn’t the flashiest performance, but Carson Wentz had a clean, efficient day at the office. Wentz relied heavily on underneath passes, but he was accurate, completing 78% of his attempts and giving his playmakers opportunities to get yards after the catch.

Dallas Goedert hauled in a career-high nine passes, six of which converted for either a first down or touchdown. The second-year tight end was Wentz’s go-to target in key situations — he made a nice grab on a tight-window throw in the end zone for a first-quarter score and he followed that up by hauling in a high throw to pick up a first down on the game’s final drive.

The Eagles' secondary was lucky Prescott was off his game tonight. The Cowboys' receivers were able to get behind them on a handful of occasions, which could have led to some huge plays had Prescott been able to make the throw.

It seemed as if most of Dallas' momentum came to a halt after Fletcher Cox‘s strip of Tony Pollard early in the third quarter. The play would've been a tackle for loss on third down, but Cox wasn't satisfied with that. He made a conscious effort to rake the ball out as the two went down to the ground at Philadelphia's 26-yard line. That was the deepest Dallas would go into Philadelphia territory until its final drive in the fourth quarter.

Dallas Cowboys

It was evident that Dak Prescott‘s injury to his throwing shoulder affected his game tonight. He was successful on short crossing routes, as the Eagles were happy to let him have those plays, but he was wildly inaccurate down the field. He missed on a handful of deep passes where his receiver had separation from the coverage.

While Prescott was inaccurate, his receivers didn't help him when he was able to get the ball to them. The Cowboys had several drops on plays that would've kept drives alive.

The Cowboys’ pass-rush was largely neutralized this afternoon. Robert Quinn nearly came up with a game-changing play late, but Wentz was able to secure the loose ball after Quinn stripped him on the Cowboys’ lone sack of the day. DeMarcus Lawrence had a few wins, but a consistent impact from this group just wasn’t there tonight.

Dallas’ underneath coverage was heavily targeted and it put a lot of stress on the linebackers and safeties in the Cowboys’ zone-heavy scheme. For the most part, this wasn’t a good thing for the Cowboys, as Goedert, Miles Sanders and Greg Ward Jr. consistently found space underneath and were able to pick up significant yardage after the catch.

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