The Cowboys head into Week 5 looking for a bounce-back performance from their offensive line. Standing in the way of that, however, is Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald.
"He's dynamic," Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy told Dallas reporters Wednesday. "He's a game-wrecker."
Asked how quickly his eyes find where Donald is on the field, McCarthy jokingly said "you get off the bus, you better look around, because that's the kind of player he is." And while they recognize that aforementioned impact, McCarthy said it's important not to make a bunch of wholesale changes just to try to counter Donald, because that can cause players to slow down and think too much and not stepping as fast.
According to Next Gen Stats, Donald has generated multiple quarterback pressures in 56 consecutive games, most in the Next Gen Stats era (since 2016). The last time Donald failed to do so was Week 14 of the 2018 season.
The Cowboys are coming off a 25-10 win over the Commanders, but had to overcome averaging 2.1 yards per carry. Their offensive line's performance over the last three games overall is another driving force behind wanting to play well this week, besides the challenge of facing Donald.
"I think the biggest thing for us is we recognize the type of player he is, where he's going to line up and how we want to execute against him, but man, we want to be better up front," McCarthy said. "I know our guys are excited about the challenge, but really our focus is on self-improvement."
Rams-Cowboys at SoFi Stadium kicks off at 1:25 p.m. p.m. pacific time on Sunday (FOX).