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2016 NFL Christmas Games Schedule & Predictions: Dallas Cowboys to Play Safe Against Detroit Lions to Prepare for New York Giants

( [email protected] ) Dec 20, 2016 10:04 AM EST
Although the Dallas Cowboys are stronger than the Detroit Lions, the upcoming game still puts immense pressure on America's Team because it could determine its standing against the New York Giants and the squad's road to claiming the NFC East crown. Because of this the Cowboys could play safe it is match against the Lions by making certain lineup changes.
Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott (21) runs with the ball against the Baltimore Ravens at AT&T Stadium. The Cowboys beat the Raven 27-17. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Although the Dallas Cowboys are stronger than the Detroit Lions, the upcoming game still puts immense pressure on America's Team because it could determine its standing against the New York Giants and the squad's road to claiming the NFC East crown. Because of this the Cowboys could play safe it is match against the Lions by making certain lineup changes.

Right now, the Cowboys have a winning record of 12-2, with both losses coming from the Giants. At this standing, the Cowboys are being considered as the No. 1 seed of the NFC East. Trailing closely behind them are the Giants at 10-4.

As noted by MLive, if the Giants manage to extend their winning streak until the end of the regular season, they'll be able to put the pressure on the Cowboys to win their last two games. If the Cowboys fall, then they will end up facing the Giants for a third time in a tie-breaker game. This, of course, is not an ideal scenario for Dallas especially since the Giants were the only team that the Cowboys failed to put down this season.

But, this possible situation could drastically affect how the Cowboys will enter their Christmas game against the Lions. With the possibility of facing off against the Giants again for the NFC East title, the Dallas franchise might decide to sideline a couple of its starters in the match against Detroit.

The logic behind this move is to protect star players from possible injuries. At this time, which is just a couple of games away from the playoffs, an injury could easily lead to the downfall of a winning team.

But then again, playing safe could also be a risky move for the Cowboys. With a new and slightly less-experienced lineup, the Cowboys overall performance could decrease, which then might lead to a loss to the Lions.

This would put the Cowboys in a tighter spot especially if the Giants are able to win in their last two games. But, due to these possible scenarios, it's a bit hard to pinpoint how the Cowboys will tackle their last weeks. Hopefully though, the Cowboys will become an even stronger team as they head into the playoffs since Demarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory are now expected to return to the active roster, according to 247 Sports.

Tags : NFL, Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions, New York Giants, NFC East