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Sunday, December 16, 2012
How you feeling? Cowboys-Steelers

By Dan Graziano

As the Dallas Cowboys prepare to host the Pittsburgh Steelers at 4:25 p.m. ET (3:25 p.m. CT) on Sunday, here's one reason for Cowboys fans to feel good about the game and one reason for concern.

Feeling good: The Steelers don't scare you the way they used to. They've lost three of their past four games, including last week's clunker against San Diego, and while Ben Roethlisberger is back from injury and presumably getting healthier by the week, the Steelers have issues at running back and on defense, where cornerback Ike Taylor is injured and won't play. If Philip Rivers and Danario Alexander were able to light up the Pittsburgh secondary last Sunday, there's no reason to think that Tony Romo and Dez Bryant can't do the same -- assuming Bryant can catch with that broken left index finger.

Cause for concern: The Cowboys' defense is in tatters. It appears cornerback Morris Claiborne will miss the game due to his concussion. And while they can fill in with Mike Jenkins and the pleasantly surprising Sterling Moore, it just eats away further at their depth on that side of the ball. They're already playing without their two starting inside linebackers, a starting safety and two starting defensive linemen. Claiborne has been improving as the season's gone along, and without him covering receivers on the back end it'll be very important for the Cowboys' pass rush to get to Roethlisberger and sack him.