COWBOYS VS. REDSKINS PREVIEW: Dak and Co. starving for a road win

Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) gestures after rushing for a first down against the Washington Redskins during the second half at FedEx Field.Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas has won five straight at rival Washington.

The Cowboys kick off at Washington at 3:25 on Sunday afternoon. The Redskins are a one-point favorite, but ESPN's Matchup Predictor has Dallas with a 52.5 chance of winning.

This would be an excellent time for the Cowboys to win their first road game of this season as it would sent them into the bye week with a 4-3 record and at least a tie for first place in the NFC East.

Here are some more particulars:

SERIES HISTORY: 117th regular-season meeting. Dallas leads 70-44-2. The Cowboys have won 8 of the last 10, including 5 straight in Washington.

BY THE NUMBERS: 0 – The number of touchdowns the Cowboys have scored in the first half on the road so far this season. Dallas is 0-3 away from home.

PLAYER SPOTLIGHT: LB Jaylon Smith is second on the Dallas defense having posted 50 tackles through the first six games and he has three sacks and a forced fumble to go along with them. Fellow LB Sean Lee, who missed five full games due to injury last season, is sidelined again with a hamstring injury. But the Cowboys haven’t dropped off with Lee out since Smith has been so active, along with rookie Leighton Vander Esch, who leads Dallas with 51 tackles.

MATCHUPS TO WATCH:

-- Cowboys LBs vs. Redskins QB Alex Smith. Dallas has struggled on the road against dual-threat quarterbacks this season. But Smith hasn’t been terribly potent as a passer or runner so far this season. He ranks 23rd in the NFL at 241 passing yards per game and has been less effective running than in the past as he has 60 yards on 27 carries. And he’s been sacked 12 times in five games. He’s not exactly Deshaun Watson. The Redskins offense as a whole hasn’t been much better than Dallas this seson as they rank 25th in the NFL at 344 yards per game. It will be up to Dallas LBs Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch to keep Smith frustrated stop Washington from having a breakout offensive performance.

-- Cowboys WRs vs. Redskins DBs. Washington has a star CB in 2015 All-Pro Josh Norman, but Dallas showed last week that it can confuse a standout corner by not having a clear No. 1 receiver. Jacksonville and Jalen Ramsey came into Dallas last week and couldn’t stop the Cowboys passing game from posting its best game of this campaign. Cowboys WR Cole Beasley caught 9 passes for 101 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the win over the Jaguars. But Beasley, at 5-8, isn’t the typical No. 1 target. Will Washington learn from Jacksonville’s struggles or will Dallas stay efficient in the passing game?

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