WHAT: Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys
WHEN: Monday, Sept. 26, 7:30 p.m. (CT)
WHERE: Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, Texas
SERIES: Cowboys lead series, 60-40-2
!Blocking Brian Orakpo - In the Week 1 meeting between these teams last year, Orakpo's dominance of fill-in right tackle Alex Barron had a great deal to do with the outcome. Whether or not rookie Tyron Smith, the Cowboys assumed right-side starter, will fair any better could provide a look into the future of this twice-annual series.
Redskins' Draft Review:
Rather than sit still and draft a potential franchise quarterback in Blaine Gabbert, Washington elected to move back and trade the 10th overall pick to Jacksonville, which selected the Missouri passer. They chose Purdue defensive lineman Ryan Kerrigan with the 16th pick in the first round and Clemson nose tackle Jarvis Jenkins in the second, a clear attempt to shore up an aging weakness on the defense. The Redskins finished with 12 total picks, including three wide receivers. Third-round pass-catcher Leonard Hankerson of Miami has an outside chance to start as a rookie.
Cowboys Stadium will open its 2011 schedule the same way it closed the 2010 slate, with Washington in town. In that Week 15 contest, the Cowboys jumped out to an early 13-0 lead and they led 27-7 in the third quarter. However, Grossman caught fire in the second half, throwing two touchdowns to Santana Moss and another to Chris Cooley, tying the game by halfway through the fourth. With just under five minutes to play, Washington took over possession again, but the Cowboys defense rose up with back-to-back sacks by Orlando Scandrick and Victor Butler, pinning the Redskins deep in their own territory and having to punt. From there, Jon Kitna and Tashard Choice keyed a seven-play drive that set up David Buehler for the 39-yard go-ahead field goal with 55 seconds to play, the first game-winner of Buehler's career.
One To Remember:
!The Cowboys and Redskins have split their 14-game series on Monday Night Football 7-7, and many of the games have featured two very good teams. However, both clubs had hit rock bottom when they met at Texas Stadium in Week 5 of the 2001 season. Each came in at 0-4, with the Cowboys in rebuilding mode following the retirement of Troy Aikman. Two inept offenses struggled to put up points all night, yet Washington was driving in Cowboys territory and preparing to salt the game away when running back Stephen Davis fumbled with 2:47 left to play. Greg Ellis pounced on the ball, and the Cowboys put together a 59-yard drive that began with completions from Anthony Wright to Darren Chiaverini and Rocket Ismail and ended with four runs by Emmitt Smith and another by Troy Hambrick, setting up Tim Seder for a 26-yard field goal that sailed through the uprights as time expired, giving the Cowboys a 9-7 victory.