Tha Sports Junkies 101

Is Dallas A Realistic Super Bowl LI Favorite?

Cowboys are the Super Bowl favorite BROOK WARD VIA FLICKR


The Cowboys Are This Year’s Super Bowl Favorite

Dallas has displayed dominance all season as they earned the number one overall seed in the NFC. This is the first time since 2007 that Dallas has held the number one seed. With a 13-3 record, it would be easy to make a case for the Cowboys to go all the way and win the Super Bowl this season. Yet, many still doubt the Cowboys and give praise to the Patriots and Packers. The reason they should be considered the favorite is the result of the fourth overall pick in the 2016 draft.

Ezekiel Elliott changed the fate of this Dallas team. He was drafted to make an immediate impact and carry a heavy workload. Elliott has done just that, excelling in his first season as a pro and it’s why the Cowboys are so dangerous. For years, the formula for winning in the NFL is containing a consistent and effective rushing attack. The Cowboys have the league’s leading rusher, and he has primed them for success. Elliott is a big reason why Dallas should be viewed as the favorite to win it all this season.

Elliott gained 1,631 rushing yards off of 322 carries. That’s an average of 5.1 yards per carry, and the guy’s just a rookie. With one of the best, if not the best offensive line in football, Elliott paved the way for Dallas‘ offense to succeed this year. The ability to run the ball alone is not why Elliott is such an important player in this offense. What he does opens up the field for everyone else. Fellow rookie, Dak Prescott was given more basic defensive looks and more man coverage looks. Opposing defenses had to respect Elliott’s talent, which gave the Dallas receivers more opportunities.

The Cowboys have numerous ways of beating defenses with their weapons. Cole Beasley emerged as a consistent and dangerous threat this season. With 75 receptions, Beasley led the Dallas offense among receivers. He became one of Prescott’s favorite targets with his ability to find open space and expose the defense. With Dez Bryant and Terrance Williams drawing most of the attention, Beasley and Prescott established a solid connection and it gave the Cowboys some wide receiver depth.

As the season unfolded, Prescott established rhythm and chemistry with his play makers and the offense grew. Dez Bryant and Jason Witten started the season off a little slower than usual. Bryant scored just three touchdowns in the first nine games. Once Prescott developed into a comfortable down field passer, he was able to find his star players. The Cowboys are known for being an offensive juggernaut, and their offense has continued to carry them, despite being led by two rookies.

People often point out that the Cowboys aren’t a realistic favorite to win it all this year due to their defense. I say they can handle it because the Cowboys proved it on the road. Dallas traveled to Green Bay and Pittsburgh and defeated both teams. The Steelers and Packers have two of the league’s top offenses. If they can beat those two teams on the road, I have faith they can do it again in Texas if they were to meet.

Championship caliber teams usually have strong and dependable defenses. We all know the Cowboys don’t have one. The Dallas defense isn’t great, but they do their job as long as they are rested. The Cowboys have the ability to hold the ball and control the game with their rushing ability. That gives the defense some much needed rest. As long as the defense isn’t getting gassed, the Cowboys have a very realistic shot at winning this year’s Lombardi Trophy.

The Cowboys should be considered the Super Bowl favorite because they can run the ball better than anyone else and they have so many other weapons on offense. Dallas can flat out play with anyone due to their ability to score. The defense isn’t the best, but with the emergence of David Irving in the pass rush, they might have just enough on defense to get it done. The Cowboys will be a tough out for anyone, and they won’t have to leave the state of Texas throughout the post season.