NFL Wildcard Playoff Preview | Dallas Cowboys (12-5) vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-9)

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The Dallas Cowboys (12-5) get a rematch with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-9)in the NFC Wildcard game in the first round of the playoffs. These two teams went head-to-head in Week one and the Bucs took a 19-3 victory over the Cowboys. 19 weeks later and a lot has changed…

Things to look out for in Monday night’s matchup:


It’s no secret that this Cowboys offense hasn’t produced in the last few games. Prescott has thrown 15 interceptions to date, that’s the most interceptions thrown by a QB in the NFL this season. He has thrown an interception in seven consecutive games and is looking to stop that statistic on Monday. The good news is Tampa only has 10 interceptions so far this season which is one of the lowest in the NFL. With that being said Prescott will still have to look out for the three cornerbacks the Bucs have who are good at pass breakups, ranked top 10 in yards allowed per catch at 10.8.

The weak area for the Bucs is at the tight end position ranked 27th in the league, which could go in the Cowboys favor as Prescott’s go-to guy behind CeeDee Lamb is Dalton Schultz. Schultz has over 50 catches this season and averages a little over 50 yards per game. Prescott could also hit RB Tony Pollard on the quick throw, which he has been doing really well in that area all season. Pollard had 39 receptions for 371 yards and three touchdowns this season.

Most of Prescott’s passes will go in the direction of CeeDee Lamb. He finished the season with 107 receptions, 1359 yards, and nine touchdowns.

The run game needs to get more involved if they want to win this game. Last week they had little to no production with 64 yards rushing between all running backs, averaging 2.4 yards per carry. Both Tony Pollard and Ezekiel Elliott both couldn’t get more than three yards per carry.


Dallas’s defense’s goal is to get to QB Tom Brady as quickly as possible. Brady will have to avoid four pass rushers with six plus sacks this season including LB Micah Parsons, who already recorded two sacks on Brady in their first matchup in week one.

The Trevon Diggs and Mike Evans matchup should be very interesting to watch. Both are top tier athletes and Tampa doesn’t have much of a run game so most of their offense goes through Evans.

The Bucs struggle offensively on third down conversion and is a big reason their offense has struggled all season. On the other hand we have the Cowboys who are a top 10 defense on third down ranked no. 9.

These two teams will battle it out on Monday night in Tampa. Kick off is at 7:15 PM CST.