Sunday 9.25 PM Preview: Prescott and Mahomes to star in exciting offensive battle

The Kansas City Chiefs welcome the red hot Dallas Cowboys to Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday, fresh off of a big get right victory against the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday Night Football. Dallas also won last week, limiting the Atlanta Falcons to three points.

KC were handed good news on Saturday as Clyde Edwards-Helaire was activated from injured reserve. The Cowboys on the other hand will be without star receiver Amari Cooper after he was placed on the reserve/covid list less than 24 hours earlier.

What’s up with Mahomes and the KC Offense?

Former NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes hasn’t looked like his self this season, throwing 10 interceptions in 10 games, the worst stretch of his young career. Now don’t get me wrong, he’s not been bad, he has thrown 25 touchdowns in that span as well, but the former Texas Tech Red Raider isn’t playing at his usual elite level.

In fact, if you look at the numbers that the Chiefs offense has put up, they’re not abnormal at all. They’re among the best in many categories, like first downs, which they lead the league in, as well as being the most efficient group on 3rd down, converting 53.3% of the time. Their red zone numbers are almost identical to last year, except at home. The Chiefs are struggling in that area at Arrowhead, placing 26th in the league, only converting 50% of the time. The main problem is obviously the turnovers, they weren’t there last year, the Chiefs have given up 20 of them already, adding 10 fumbles to Mahomes’ picks. That’s racked up a -8 turnover differential, which only the Jets and Jags have more than.

I think they need another weapon, Sammy Watkins is missed quite a bit. Demarcus Robinson and Byron Pringle aren’t it, and Josh Gordon is not playing a part. Mecole Hardman has his uses but isn’t what they need. Clyde Edwards-Helaire comes back off IR this week. He’s played 5 games less than Darrell Williams and yet only has 40 yards fewer. The ex-LSU tiger should add something to the offense.

Dak for MVP?

The Dallas Cowboys offense is thriving this season, after the return of their franchise quarterback, Dak Prescott. The signal-caller of America’s team has been through so much in the past year or so, from the sudden passing of his brother to the season-ending serious ankle fracture. Prescott has come back in 2021 and is not only nailed on for comeback player of the year, but has also got a shot at the league MVP.

Dak’s completed 70.3% of his passes so far this season for 2341 yards, 20 TD’s and 5 INT’s. That’s put up a 110.8 passer rating, the best of any QB. As good as Prescott’s been, you have to give credit to the guys around him. Dallas have an elite offensive line, Zach Martin and La’el Collins are class, Martin is even PFF’s highest-graded guard, posting a 94.8 grade.

Ceedee Lamb is having a breakout season, his second year in the league has been very good, whilst Amari Cooper has always been solid, Cedric Wilson has played his part and Michael Gallup being back now only adds to that. You’ve got to give it up to Dalton Schultz too, he’s up there with the likes of Darren Waller and Mike Gesicki for yards this season, and has been tremendous in the run game, ranking as PFF’s 4th best TE at run blocking (75.4 grade.) Those players have helped combine towards the number 1 offense in terms of yards (433.9 ypg) and points (31.6 ppg) per game.

Defensive focus

These two sides have some quite polarising defensive stats, Cowboys DC Dan Quinn has dramatically improved one of the league’s worst units from a year ago to a pretty decent group with standout players. They’re 10th in points allowed per game (21.7), 3rd in third-down defense, only allowing offenses to convert 32.11% of the time. That final stat is a vast improvement from last year’s 28th ranked 47.15% unit that always seemed to collapse. Quinn got revenge on his former team, the Atlanta Falcons last week, limiting a pretty exciting O to 3 points. He’s also been part of the development of Trevon Diggs in his second year. He’s an interesting one, he gets targeted a lot and does give up plays, but the man is a turnover magnet. Dallas have created 17 turnovers this year, eight of those are interceptions from Trevon. He changes the game.

On the other sideline, the Chiefs defense has regressed. They’re 20th in points allowed per game (24.1 ppg), and 26th in total defense (373.2 yards per game). They’ve also allowed the second-most yards after the catch this year at 1369, and have given up 39 plays of 20 or more yards, the fourth most. On top of that Kansas City has given up the most plays of 40 or more yards too (11). They’ve got a task on their hands on Sunday. There have been some bright sparks on the contrary. Rashad Fenton is PFF’s second highest-graded cornerback, and Tyrann Matthieu, Chris Jones and Juan Thornhill are playmakers. Bar them there isn’t much going at all, and it’s telling.


Interestingly the Chiefs are currently favoured by 2.5, which I don’t get, yes Dallas are without Amari Cooper, but they’ve been the better team this year. Whoever gets off to the best start will win, and I think that will be the Cowboys.

Dallas 31, KC 27

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