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Out Of The Chute: Cowboys at Patriots

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    The Jets were offensive, but not in the way anyone was hoping.

    Every week during the season, we’ll scout out the Cowboys next opponent. This week, that opponent is the New England Patriots.

    The Opponent: The New England Patriots, aka the Footsox, aka WES WELKAHHH IS THE BEST RECEVIAH EVAH!!!

    Record: 4-1

    The Line: Pats by 7. Bill Simmons does not agree with that line.

    Last Game: An easy 30-21 win over the Jets in which the Pats allowed their running game to steal the limelight from Tom Brady and company. BenJarvus Green-Ellis ran for 136 yards and two scores, and the defense held the Jets to seven three-and-outs, though that may be more an indictment of the Jets' offense than a credit to New England's defense.

    The Coach: Bill Belichick, who I'm sure asked his assistants to include a laugh track on all Tony Romo game film.

    The Offense: I suppose it's decent. #1 in yardage. #1 in passing. #2 in scoring. #1 in yards per play. I could go on, but you're just gonna get depressed. The good news? Tom Brady is no longer on pace to throw for the first 6,000-yard season. He's instead on pace to throw for only 5,997 yards. What. A. Loser. Meanwhile, little scrappy Wes Welker is on pace for the first ever 2,000-yard receiving season. And the problem with doubling up Welker is that it leaves the Deion Branch and Chad Ochocinco in one-on-one coverage outside. Ochocinco can't catch anymore, but Branch? Branch has a pulse. Tight ends Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski can also ruin your day. And now they can run the ball, too! This is an unpleasant offense to go against.

    The Defense: It sucks! HOORAY! DFL in yardage allowed. HOWEVAH, it should always be noted that the Pats' defense suffers from teams frantically trying to keep pace with Brady's passing offense, and so those yardage stats are somewhat misleading. But don't take that to mean this defense is good, because it isn't. They can't rush the passer, and they can't seem to cover anyone. You can't just cut Brandon Meriweather right before the start of the season and expect things to go smoothly. Dez Bryant needs to catch 200 yards worth of passes.

    Key Matchup: Tony Romo vs. Bipolar Disorder. This is a road game against one of the NFL's marquee teams, so Romo has a built-in excuse to flaunt his bad side on Sunday. But perhaps he'll rise to occasion this time around. It would be just like Romo to beat the Pats and then lose four games in a row.