5 players and areas that have to be elite on Sunday to beat the Cowboys

The Miami Dolphins will host the Cowboys in a game that is important for both teams in their pursuit of playoff seeding and division titles.

Dec 17, 2023; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) and running
Dec 17, 2023; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (1) and running / Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
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When the Miami Dolphins take the field on Sunday, eyes will be focused on Tua Tagovailoa, Tyreek Hill's health, and Raheem Mostert but if Miami is going to win, five others have to be great.

The Cowboys defense is a tough, physical, and polished unit. They have had their share of bad games, last week for example in Buffalo, but for the most part, this is a defensive team that is out to prove last week was a fluke.

On offense, the Cowboys are a four-player show. Dak Prescott, CeeDee Lamb, Jake Ferguson, and Tony Pollard. The four of them can create enough plays to control the flow of the game. They can score quickly when they need to and they will take chances downfield.

The Dolphins safety tandem of Jevon Holland and DeShon Elliot are going to be tested all day but we don't know if either of them will play. Elliot seems on track to do so. Still in concussion protocol, Elliot should clear on Saturday. He was in a red jersey at practice this week.

Holland is a different story and there is no new developments regarding his injured knees.

This is going to put Brandon Jones back in the spotlight this week if either one of them can't go. Last Sunday, Jones poached two INTs off the Jets offense and he will be tested deep this week by the Cowboys WRs and Prescott's big arm.

If the Dolphins are going to keep the Cowboys from big plays deep, Jones is going to need to play at a top level again this week.