Foxborough, Massachusetts: Ezekiel Elliott didn’t have to think long about what he remembers most about Dallas’ last visit to New England in 2019 this week.
It was like a hurricane. Elliott recalled a game played in moist, windy conditions, including temperatures that dropped in the 1930s. I had a big beach towel in my pants so I could keep my hands dry. I remember wearing it like a pair of 5 or 6 different gloves.
New England won 13-9 that day in a match between the Patriots’ top-ranked defense and the Cowboys’ top-ranked offense, holding Dallas for the first time in the season without touchdowns.
This was the beginning of three consecutive losses for the Cowboys, who lost four of the last six games in the middle of missing the playoffs 8-8. New England finished 12-4 but was knocked out in the Wild Card Round and was Tom Brady’s final match against the Patriots.
Two years later there were many changes.
Aside from Brady’s departure, New England (2-3) also plays an unfamiliar role to the vulnerable, as they try to avoid the first 0-4 start under Bill Belichick. The Cowboys (4-1), this time attacking the NFL’s second place, armed with a rejuvenated Dak Prescott, appear to be as equipped as they were when they first defeated the Patriots during the Belichick era.
The Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower said the three pillars of their defense were physical, overcoming quarterbacks and stopping.
All three have additional challenges this week as opposed to two attacks on the Cowboys offensive line, Prescott’s quarterback, which has one of the fastest releases in the league, and running back with Elliott and Tony Pollard. there is.
Hightower said he didn’t hesitate to Prescott because of an ankle injury last season.
According to Hightower, hell does whatever it takes. If he needs to run for the first down, I think hell will do it.I’m very confident where he is and I think his play definitely shows that
New England won the final six matches overall, with Dallas coming in 1996 for the final victory in the series. The Cowboys haven’t won in New England since 1987.
Record aside, Dallas coach Mike McCarthy hopes to face another Patriots team ready.
There is no punch to be pulled when you play these guys, McCarthy said, 1-3 against Belichick. This is the style of play that our guys accept, but they do a great job of trying to plan for what you are best at.
According to Sportradar, Dallas’ defensive end Randy Gregory has four QB pressures in each of the last three games and is in the best three stretches of his off and on career. His previous best total in three games was 10. Both his sack came second in three games.
His influence is clear while Gregory chases one Dallas Rookie with a sack (Micah Parsons leads the team with 2) and is tied to another 2021 draft topic at Osa Odigizwa. legs.
This is the third time he has been able to play at the beginning of the seven seasons of Gregoris. Stopping substance abuse set him aside four other times. And it’s the first time I’ve played five games without missing time to get injured.
Gregory, who has knee pain between games, said he felt it was where he needed it, as long as he was confident. There are still some parts of my game that I have to work on. Sometimes parts of my body don’t feel right. But my play on the field, I’m not really surprised about it. I think it’s on the rise.
Dallas and 201
The Cowboys rushed an average of 201 yards per game for three weeks before defeating the Giants 44-20. When Elliott put together a 100-yard dash for the first time since his third straight victory in 2019, they hit that number exactly against New York.
Dallas rushed to second place in the NFL at 173 yards per game after winning just 60 in the opener, losing 31-29 to Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay when Prescott threw 403 yards.
Elliott is third in the NFL with an average of 452 yards and an average of 5.3 yards per carry, the best of five games in his two-time rush champion career, O-line said. You also got a receiver that beats the DB. Everyone was playing their part and enjoying the benefits.
The Patriots kicker Nick Folk enters the field goal of the first week of the shy to be the 35th player in NFL history to reach 300 in his career. He joins Robbie Gould (403), Mason Crosby (355), Matt Platter (329) and Justin Tucker (302) and is the fifth active kicker to reach a milestone.
AP Sports Writer Schuyler Dixon from Arlington, Texas contributed to this report.
Other APNFL Coverage: https: //apnews.com/hub/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
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Cowboys ready to defeat Belichick-led patriots for the first time
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