Packers: Top 5 lessons learned in Week 5 win over Cowboys

ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 08: Aaron Jones /
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ARLINGTON, TX – OCTOBER 08: Ezekiel Elliott
ARLINGTON, TX – OCTOBER 08: Ezekiel Elliott /

4. Bad scene in the trenches

One can look no further than Dallas’ running attack as the primary reason why the Packers trailed for most of the contest and would have easily lost if not for (Aaron) Rodgers and a fortuitous interception return.

The Cowboys bullied the visiting team with 163 yards on the ground, 10 rushing first downs and handily won the time-of-possession battle 35:06 to 24:54.

Mike Daniels struggled mightily in the second half with Ezekiel Elliott dragging him forward for extra yards on multiple occasions.

Similarly, Quinton Dial had his own share of difficulties up front as he frequently wasn’t able to hold his ground versus Dallas’ formidable offensive line.

Green Bay’s run defense so far has been a mixed bag.

As a group, the defense surrendered an unsightly 5.0 and 5.2 yards per carry to Seattle and Atlanta in the first two weeks of the season, but tightened things up versus Cincinnati and Chicago by giving up 3.7 yards and 3.4 yards per rush.

What can we expect going forward?

Well, it’s probably safe to say that Dom Capers’ crew won’t be facing another offensive line quite as potent as Dallas’ for the rest of the year.

And let’s also keep in mind that Sunday’s win was Daniels’ first game back after missing the previous two with a hamstring injury. His late-game ineffectiveness may indeed have been due to fatigue brought about by missed action.

If the Packers are looking to secure another double-digit win season along with a division title, they can’t let opponents control the pace of the game early and look to their quarterback to pull them out of the fire time and again.

Being stout against the run would go a long way toward picking up a few much-needed easy victories.