Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Dallas Cowboys Week 5 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a Week 5 roundup for the Dallas Cowboys in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 5

Biggest issue on defense: Run defense

Seems a little harsh to say run defense after it allowed 2.3 yards per carry against the New England Patriots, but it's run defense. The performance against Arizona in Week 3 still resonates: 222 yards allowed, 180 in the first half, 7.4 yards per carry. The Cowboys know opponents will want to run on them each week, and San Francisco (No. 3 in rushing) is up next, with two games against Philadelphia (No. 2) in the near future. The Cowboys can create takeaways and rush the passer. The best way to neutralize that is to pound the running game. The Cowboys know it and need to remain true to their gap responsibilities. -- Todd Archer -- Rank: 5

Will Week 3's head-scratching loss at Arizona end up being an aberration? One bounce-back win doesn't prove anything, but Dallas thoroughly demolished Bill Belichick and the Patriots in all phases. Even when the Cowboys slightly let their foot off the gas, they were head-and-shoulders better. That's reassuring. DaRon Bland's pick-six was such an important play in the game (after he missed a chance at one earlier) because it effectively ended the Patriots' chances before halftime and sent a message that this defense can indeed soldier on without Trevon Diggs. Plus, even with some OL breakdowns, the offense proved to be efficient and occasionally dangerous against a good Pats defense.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 5

That showing against the Patriots was the team we expect to see this season. The defense was special and put the Arizona debacle in the rearview mirror.

USA Today -- Rank: 4

Is a pissed off Dak Prescott a better Dak Prescott? He was salty before Sunday's demolition of New England and again right afterward. Time to see how well he channels all that anger with two consecutive prime-time affairs in California — one against a Niners squad which eliminated Dallas from the playoffs the last two years, and the other against former OC Kellen Moore and the Bolts.

The Athletic -- Rank: 6

Are we apologizing to Mike McCarthy yet or waiting a little longer? The Cowboys, who are fourth in the league in scoring (31 points per game), are the opposite of the talent-top-heavy 49ers. Six non-quarterbacks had a carry Sunday and 10 players caught a pass.

FOX -- Rank: 6

Handing Bill Belichick the worst regular-season loss of his career is a nice way to bounce back from last week's debacle. It's fair to be concerned that the Cowboys' red zone offense is still struggling to reach the end zone, but when their defense is forcing turnovers and scoring touchdowns it doesn't matter. We're well aware Dallas can beat down an overmatched opponent. Big test this weekend in San Francisco to see how they handle a heavyweight.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 5

I can't figure out what happened to the Cowboys' defense in Week 3. In their three wins, they've allowed 13 points, an average of 213 yards (75 rushing yards per game) and have forced 10 turnovers. In the loss to Arizona, they allowed 28 points, 400 yards (including 222 yards on the ground) and didn't force a turnover. No idea what to make of that, but it'll be interesting to see the Cowboys' defense against the 49ers in Week 5.

PFT -- Rank: 4

If you can't weather the early storm against Dallas, you'll get blown away.

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