What the Mac Jones and Patriots offense needs to do to take advantage of the Cowboys defense

Mac Jones managed to lead the Patriots back from a 13-point deficit last week to pull off a win over the Texans. With the Cowboys on deck, it’s a whole other ball game.

Do not bet the farm that the Patriots can survive a double-digit deficit. As it is, matching scores get hard enough.

With Dak Prescott healthy and back in the middle, the Cowboys have scored 170 points in five games. They have the second-ranked scoring offense (34 points per game).

Patriots?

They have scored 96 points in five games, which is roughly an average of 19 ppg.

On paper, it is a mismatch. However, games are not played on paper. The Patriots were to be spearheaded by the Buccaneers in Week 4, and almost pulled that game out.

Against the Cowboys, the Patriots need the same kind of effort defensively, but also need the offense to get out of the shell.

Offensively, they need to score more often than they need to have a chance. The best way to make it happen?

Ways Jones and the Patriots Can Hang With Cowboys Explosive Offense:

1. Start fast

The Patriots have not been very good at the start of play on either side of the ball, but especially in offense. In terms of scoring in the first quarter, the Pats are in 26th place in the NFL. Offensively, against the Cowboys, they can not be invisible early in the game.

Starting fast will be crucial to their chances.

The Cowboys will certainly not wait to put points on the board. They lead the league in the first quarter with an average of nine points in that quarter alone. The Pats, meanwhile, have been allergic to early production. They have put a bagel in the first quarter four times in the first five games.

The only game they have put points on the board early was against the Jets, where they had 10 points in the first quarter.

Jakobi Meyers knows the importance of flying out of the gate, especially against the Cowboys.

“Everyone is getting stuck and not just dipping their toes in the water,” he said Wednesday. “Make sure we jump in, ready to go from the moment the ball was kicked off. The season is a long season so we feel like we are getting better with every game. ”

Aim for tight ends

Jones gets a better feel for tight ends Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith. Against the Texans, Henry had six catches in 75 yards and a touchdown. Smith had two catches in 27 yards.

In this game, they will need even more of it.

According to Football Outsider’s efficiency metric, DVOA, the Cowboys defense ranks second worst in covering tight ends.

While Jones is good at spreading the ball around, he should focus a little more on the tight ends. Both Henry and Smith should be able to be open with frequency against this team.

When the duo signed, it seemed to signal that the Patriots offense would revolve around them.

In this game, that should be the case.

For his part, Henry has seen his connection grow with Jones.

“There is a lot of trust there and we continue to build that,” he said. “He does a good job. I try to improve every day. It has definitely come a long way since a few weeks ago. ”

3. Avoid Diggs

Cornerback Trevon Diggs leads the league with six interceptions in the first five games. He is an aggressive player. Many of his choices have come on short to intermediate routes. So it might not be wise for Jones to test Diggs, his former Alabama teammate.

After facing him in training with Crimson Tide, Jones is very aware of what Diggs, who is reported to be a decision in the game due to injury, brings to the table if he were to play.

“Obviously you can not be afraid of anyone or anything like that. You just have to know where he is because you have to respect him, respect his game, respect his knowledge and respect everyone in the defense and the coaching staff because they do a good job during the preparation and it turned out on the tape, ”said Jones on Wednesday. “We have all the respect in the world for these guys. They play really well and it will be a lot of fun just to compete with them. ”

In total, the Cowboys have notched 10 interceptions this season along with two fumbles for 12 turnovers, second only to Buffalo in that division. So they are clearly ballhawks. Patriots do not have to help the cowboys. Avoiding wiretapping and revenue in general will be the key to Jones and the offense.

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