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Saturday open thread: Who are the key Lions players vs. Cowboys?

Who do the Lions need a big game out of in Week 4?

NFL: Detroit Lions at Dallas Cowboys dKevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions have created their own opportunity last week. Facing the possibility of an 0-3 hole that almost no teams ever crawl out of, Detroit pulled off a huge upset over the New England Patriots. Now, thanks to struggles around the rest of the division, the Lions can jump the Vikings this week, and could even theoretically jump to a tie for the division lead by the end of Sunday.

But to keep the good times rolling, they can’t look past a hungry Dallas Cowboys team. The Cowboys have been the source of a lot of criticism over the past couple weeks, and if they can’t turn things around soon, they risk falling far enough behind the reigning Super Bowl champs that they won’t be able to recover.

So the Lions will need some big individual performances to come out of Dallas with a win.

Today’s Question of the Day is:

Who are the Lions’ key players vs. the Cowboys?

My answer: I’ll give one on offense, one on defense. Offensively, I think the Lions need a big game out of Matthew Stafford. It’s the easy answer, yes, but he’s going to have a challenge this week with an impressive Cowboys front seven. Stafford has been inconsistent thus far in 2018, and he has way too many turnovers. Detroit just can’t succeed with Stafford giving the ball away that often.

Defensively, it’s all about stopping Ezekiel Elliott, and that means it’s time for Jarrad Davis to step up. Unfortunately, Davis popped up on Friday’s injury report, which means there’s no guarantee he’ll play this week, but if he does, he’s going to be at his best. Not only will he have to play gap-discipline football, but he’ll need to show some more controlled tackling than he’s displayed thus far. Elliott is the kind of running back that will immediately punish someone with unsound tackling form, and Davis has been all over the place.

Your turn.

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