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With More Time To Prepare, Jerry Jones Expects Better Execution Against Eagles

IRVING, Texas – Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones is seemingly a proponent of the phrase "if it ain't broke, don't fix it."

That was Jones' mindset for Sunday's rematch against Philadelphia – though for the Eagles, not the Cowboys. After dismantling the Cowboys by stopping the Dallas run game two weeks ago, Jones said Friday he expects to see a similar gameplan in effect at Lincoln Financial Field.

"Why wouldn't you, if you're Philadelphia, play just exactly like you played us before? They kicked our butt," Jones said on 105.3 The Fan. "So, that's been two weeks ago. I'd certainly try."

The Eagles' front seven held the Cowboys to their second-lowest rushing output of 2014 – a mere 93 yards. The only defense to do better was Arizona, who held Dallas to 92 rushing yards in a game Tony Romo missed due to injury.

DeMarco Murray had his lowest total of the season on Thanksgiving, with a mere 73 yards. With the Cowboys' passing game proving ineffective, the running game had little space to generate any offense – a departure from the norm this year.

Jones said the key to reversing that trend this time is to find success where they couldn't before and throw the ball.

"Offensively, if they're going to limit our run early, then there's not but one choice," he said. "You don't have but one choice in football, and that is to make them get off that and get back. They won't do it if you won't make them."

Common sense says that Romo and Co. should be able to have success against a Philly pass defense that ranks No. 26 in the league, allowing an average of 258 yards per game. The problem with that logic is that the Eagles also ranked 26th on Thanksgiving, when they limited Romo to 199 yards and picked him off twice.

To hear it from Jones, a full week of practices – including the last padded practice of the year on Wednesday -- should help remedy that. Last time around, the Cowboys prepped for Philadelphia using only walkthroughs, because of the shortened week created by Thanksgiving.

"I don't want to compare the practices before Thanksgiving with the practices we're having right now, because they were nonexistent," Jones said. "That's just the way the Thanksgiving Day game is, I'm talking about the practices. We just didn't practice meaningfully."

That's not an excuse anyone will be able to use after this second meeting. The Cowboys have had a full week of practice, not to mention a week off following their trip to Chicago. Philadelphia played Sunday, but has had a normal work week to prepare.

It sounds like Jones expects a similar outing in terms of gameplans. On the Cowboys' end, he's simply expecting a better performance.

"The bottom line is, we know what they're going to do. And I would do the very same thing if I were them, they had a lot of success doing it," he said. "We didn't say that it was because of preparation on our part as much as we said it was execution. Well, now we've had time to practice, let's execute."

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