There's a good chance the Titans take their foot off of the throttle on Thursday, for a rare reason, but the Cowboys are all-in on trying to build momentum before the playoffs
FRISCO, TX — It's a rare occasion the Dallas Cowboys are walking into, seeing as it's Week 17 but their opponent could potentially operate in preseason mode without having clinched a playoff spot or having been eliminated from playoff contention, but that's the exact situation with the Tennessee Titans this week.
By virtue of both the Titans and Jaguars having a 7-8 record, should the Titans fall to 7-9 and the Jaguars defeat the Texans to move to 8-8 on the season, the AFC South would still be determined in the regular season finale when the Titans and Jaguars square off at TIAA Bank Field.
If the Titans defeat the Jaguars, they own the AFC South crown and head to the playoffs. If they lose against the Jaguars, they're out, making Thursday night a bit of a bye week for Tennessee — though they've not determined yet if they'll rest Derrick Henry and other key players.
One thing's for certain, however, and that's the fact the Cowboys will remain at full throttle as they shoot for the long odds of stealing away the NFC East throne from the Eagles along with the No. 1 seed in the NFC (and its accompanying first-round bye with home field advantage).
"I don't really pay attention to much of what they've got going on," said two-time rushing champ Ezekiel Elliott. "That [has] nothing to do with me. We wanna win. We gotta go win this football game.
"We're trying to build momentum for the playoffs."
That sentiment is echoed loudly by everyone inside the building in Dallas, especially two-time Pro Bowl quarterback Dak Prescott, who said the Cowboys intensity will not be turned down simply because the Titans can afford to take a loss.
"Honestly, I don't ever really care what they're doing on the other side," Prescott said. "It's about us just building momentum and gaining confidence with each game, and moving forward as we play these last two [games] out and move over into the postseason."
But, hey, Prescott is also not allergic to any added edge that might push the Cowboys to 12-4 on the season with a possible shot at shocking the world during their matchup with the Commanders in Week 18.
"If [the Titans] wanna roll us the ball a couple times and let us go from there, I'm all for that," he said with a smile. "We'll take it however they wanna do it."