3 players the Commanders must keep quiet vs. Cowboys in Week 18

Tony Pollard leads the group of Dallas Cowboys stars the Washington Commanders must keep quiet at FedEx Field in Week 18.

Tony Pollard
Tony Pollard / Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
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Commanders can't test Stephon Gilmore

He's 33 years old, but Stephon Gilmore is a legitimate shutdown cornerback. The proof comes from the modest 54.4 completion percentage the former NFL Defensive Player of the Year has allowed in coverage.

Gilmore still knows how to stay plastered to the NFL's top wide receivers. It's what he did against A.J. Brown and the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 14.

Not only did Gilmore take the big play away from Brown, but the battle-tested defensive back created some highlights of his own. Like when he forced this fumble by the physically imposing wideout during the third quarter.

Testing Gilmore is a risk the Washington Commanders should avoid. Sam Howell is getting the start once again, but any further failure could see Jacoby Brissett come in at some stage if his hamstring problem subsides.

Brissett likes to go to Terry McLaurin, but 'Scary Terry' is likely to find himself shadowed by Gilmore. That means the Commanders will need fellow wideouts Jahan Dotson and Curtis Samuel to dominate their matchups.

Making the most of the few advantages they have is the only way the Commanders can deliver an upset and at least create a thin silver lining to this dismal season.