The defense of the Dallas Cowboys has become one of the best in the NFL. Through 10 games this season, they lead the league with 42 sacks, and their 16 turnovers ranked fifth. However, the Cowboys have been dominant in another aspect as well.

Any defense needs to set the tone, and the Cowboys did that against the Minnesota Vikings last Sunday by yielding just three points in the first quarter. It was a continuation of what has happened all season as the Cowboys’ defense hasn’t allowed a touchdown in the first quarter, and the 18 points they have given up are the fewest in the NFL.

It’s not like the Cowboys have done this against mainly terrible offenses either. The Philadelphia Eagles, Detroit Lions, and Cincinnati Bengals rank fifth, sixth, and seventh in yards per game. Also, they have the third, fourth, and eighth-ranked scoring offenses.

Against the Cowboys, these three teams managed a total of six points in the first quarter, and Dallas won two of those games. This is a welcomed sign, especially when the playoffs roll around. The reason being is that if the Cowboys don’t win the division they will have to be on the road for the postseason, and defense travels.

Dallas has scored 56 first-quarter points in 2022, giving them a nearly 40-point advantage in that area over their opponents. The Cowboys play their best defensively when they can force teams into passing downs and let their pass rush, which is the best in the NFL, pin its ears back and attack. So, being able to get early leads is the formula for Dallas, because when they do that, their defense is suffocating.

If this trend continues, the Cowboys will be tough to beat for the rest of the year and when games count the most, in the playoffs.

Feature image via Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

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