Playoff ticket, just one step toward Cowboys main goal: winning the Super Bowl

DALLAS – The Cowboys are aware that it will matter little to qualify for the postseason or win the divisional title if they do not transcend with the NFL championship that they have not won since 1995.

For that they hired coach Mike McCarthy, they built the team they have and it is the goal they have set since they started the preseason last July, with strong changes in defense and an offense that seemed unstoppable, led by the now billionaire quarterback Dak Prescott .

The Cowboys officially qualified for the Playoffs last Thursday, when the Tennessee Titans defeated the San Francisco 49ers, and still without playing, they could win the NFC East title if the Philadelphia Eagles fall to the New York Giants on Sunday. late. In the absence of this result, the division championship will be theirs for the first time in three years with the victory over the Washington Football Team hours later in the duel on Sunday night.

“We were confident that we would comply with that section,” said McCarthy in reference to qualifying for the Playoffs. “But this is about winning the division and continuing to hunt for a better seeding in the conference. Our goal is much bigger than just advancing to the Playoffs. “

It is the first time that the Cowboys have reached the Postseason since 2018 and they seem to have one of their most complete teams in recent years, despite the fact that the level of their offense has dropped during the second half of the current season, after showing in principle that they can run, move the ball and score points in almost any way possible.

“(There is) a lot of room for growth,” Prescott said. “We have taken those steps and we have improved day after day and we will continue to do so. We will reach the peak at the right time. “

For its part, the defense, which had been the team’s Achilles heel for the past decade, underwent a drastic rebuilding since the end of last season that began with the hiring of coordinator Dan Quinn and included the recruitment of eight players from among the 11 options they had in the most recent draft, until the firing of linebacker and team captain Jaylon Smith after the fourth game.

The defense has sustained the Cowboys in the most recent seven games, thanks to stealing balls, a task that has been nearly impossible for Dallas in years past. Dallas has three consecutive steals games. His longest streak in 27 years.

“You have to win a championship for you to be a championship defense,” said cornerback Trevon Diggs, who leads the NFL in interceptions with 10. “We have the potential, we have the talent, we have created an identity and we can surely get there. until there ”.

McCarthy noted that all players are focused on their individual responsibilities, on what the team can control, including the three games remaining in the regular season.

The Cowboys included starting cornerback Nickel Jourdan Lewis on the reserve / COVID-19 list this Friday, who last Sunday added his third interception and has his best season in the five he has been in the NFL, all with the Cowboys . Among the players in the regular rotation, safety Malik Hooker also entered the protocol.

Special teams coach Matt Daniels and defensive lineman Aden Durden are also in doubt to appear in the game against Washington.

“We’ve gotten this far, thanks to everyone’s hard work,” said running back Ezekiel Elliott. “We have to keep working and taking care of ourselves as much as possible, because for what is coming, we are going to need everyone.”

Is good know that…

– The Cowboys ruled out offensive tackle Tyron Smith for the second straight game with an ankle injury.

– Also on the Cowboys’ reserve / COVID-19 roster are defensive tackle Trysten Hill, wide receiver Simi Fehoko and running back Ja’Quan Hardy (practice team). It is unknown if they will be able to play against Washington.