Patriots vs. Cowboys: Five Players to Watch

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Chandler Jones, DE, Patriots

Sep 20, 2015; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New England Patriots defensive end Chandler Jones (95) tackles Buffalo Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor (5) during the first half at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Brandon Weeden is a competent NFL quarterback. He is not anything special, and does not bring anything close to the level of play of Tony Romo, but he can hurt you if you allow him to. When it comes to stopping the Cowboys’ passing attack on Sunday, it is simple to me. Get pressure on Weeden.

Leading the Patriots’ pass rush is defensive end Chandler Jones, who really seems to be coming into his own this season. Jones is in his fourth year in the NFL, and had 23.5 sacks entering this season. Not bad, but not exactly as many as you would expect from a former first-round pick, and his only six sacks from last season certainly left plenty to be desired.

Through three games, Jones has three sacks on the year all of them coming from the Patriots’ Week 2 win over the Buffalo Bills. Despite not actually bringing down the quarterback in the other two games, Jones was able to produce pressure throughout the match-ups.

Jones looks like a better player, and is rejuvenated this season. I think he is in for a big year on the Patriots’ defensive line, and Sunday could be a performance for him to make a major mark against an elite offensive line. To dominate Weeden, the Patriots need to pressure him. Pressuring the QB starts with the play of Jones.

Next: Should Patriots Trade for Cordarrelle Patterson?

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