COMMENTARY | Despite a 4-3 start, the Dallas Cowboys find themselves at the top of the weak NFC East as they limited the high-powered Philadelphia offense to three points last week.
Here are three things to watch in the Lions' Week 8 matchup against the Cowboys:
Which Tony Romo will we see?
Is Tony Romo finally starting to be the consistent quarterback everyone in Dallas was hoping he would be? There is still another half of the season to be played, but Romo has been a monster this season. He has 15 touchdowns to just five interceptions and is completing 68.3 percent of his passes.
Dez Bryant also has been a force to be reckoned with. He has 42 catches for 569 yards and six touchdowns. Bryant was a streaky receiver in the past, but he appears to be a more consistent producer.
He did make some questionable comments about doing anything Calvin Johnson can do, but he's definitely somebody the Lions can't take lightly. Andy Dalton picked apart the Lions secondary last week, and Romo could do the same thing if the Lions don't make the necessary adjustments.
While Romo has the ability to take over a game, he also has the ability to implode and let the opposing team back in the game. The last time the Cowboys played the Lions in 2011, he did just that.
After the Cowboys took a 20-3 halftime lead, Romo threw a pair of third-quarter pick sixes that helped the Lions secure a 34-30 win.
Romo may be taking better care of the ball this season, but if any defense can rattle him, it's the Lions. The Lions are third in the league in turnover ratio at plus-5. The front four has the ability to rattle any quarterback and force some bad throws.
Detroit wasn't very successful against Dalton last week, but you can bet defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham will be sure his front four doesn't disappoint two weeks in a row.
Cowboys weak secondary
The Detroit Lions passing offense is near the top of the league averaging 304.1 yards per game, good for fifth in the NFL.
The Cowboys pass defense, meanwhile, is giving up an average of 291.9 yards per game, good for 30th in the league. This sets up Matthew Stafford to have a big day.
More good news for the Lions: It appears defensive end DeMarcus Ware will not play for the Cowboys. Ware has the ability to make any quarterback's day a long one, and not having him in the lineup will give Stafford time to sit in the pocket and dissect the defense.
Cornerback Brandon Carr probably will be asked to cover Johnson, and the Flint, Mich., native and graduate of Division II's Grand Valley State University certainly will have his hands full.
Reggie Bush sits out Friday practice
Reggie Bush did not practice Friday, which could be a bad sign for the Lions. He had an ice wrap above his right knee, which is not the knee that kept him out of the Lions' 27-20 win against the Washington Redskins in Week 3.
The Lions have shown they can be effective without Bush, but the dynamic of the offense, obviously, completely changes without Bush in the lineup.
Without Bush, the Lions would rely on Joique Bell to do the heavy lifting. Bell has been a great compliment to Bush, but he hasn't scored a touchdown since Week 3 and also hasn't run for more than 27 yards since that Week 3 win against the Redskins.
Bell is used better in a complimentary role with Bush rather than a starting role.
The Cowboys will be looking for a win to get a firm grip on the NFC East, while the Lions hope they can bring back the old interception-throwing Romo. I think Stafford has a huge day through the air and the defense gives Romo fits. The Lions will improve to 5-3.
Prediction: Lions win 31-24
Tom Mitsos is a Michigan native who covers the Detroit Lions for the Yahoo! Contributor Network. He also is a high school sports reporter at MLive Media Group. You can follow Tom on Twitter.
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