DeMarcus Lawrence is doing DeMarcus Lawrence things — like chiding his competition.
Reacting to the Dallas Cowboys‘ schedule unveil, the star defensive end fired a warning shot at the Los Angeles Rams, the Cowboys’ Week 1 foe, whom he’ll face on national television in the brand-new SoFi Stadium in Englewood, Calif.
— DeMarcus Lawrence (@TankLawrence) May 8, 2020
This will mark the 36th all-time matchup of the NFC squads who, despite residing in different divisions, meet fairly regularly. The last square-off took place on Dec. 15, 2019, when Dallas routed Los Angeles, 44-21, in one of their few statement wins from a disappointing 8-8 campaign.
Prior to that, the Cowboys and Rams played in the 2018 Divisional Round, with the former club emerging victorious, 30-22.
This year’s installment will represent the debut of new Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy as well as his staff and the many new players brought in this offseason. Their opponent, regardless of 2019 appearances, is a formidable one, led by wunderkind HC Sean McVay. It’s also the first of six primetime contests, including the traditional Thanksgiving game, for the Cowboys.
Dallas has opened as 2.5-point road favorites over L.A.
With the coronavirus pandemic in mind, allowing for abrupt flexibility if need be, the NFL purposely crafted non-divisional and interconference matchups to open the season. The Cowboys won’t face an NFC East rival until Week 5 when the New York Giants march into town.
“I really like the way the schedule lays out,” McCarthy said earlier this month, per The Athletic. “It’s kind of nice not to have a division game until we can get started and find out where we are as a football team.”
Of course, that they’re helping cut the ribbon to the new $4.963 billion behemoth is a testament to owner/general manager Jerry Jones, who was instrumental in the Rams’ relocation from St. Louis to L.A. He used his immense clout to secure funding for the building, which will also house the Chargers and host non-football related sporting events such as WrestleMania, the College Football Playoff National Championship, and the Summer Olympics.
Without Jones, the Rams likely stay in the Gateway City, the Bolts in the comically-undersized StubHub Center, and the Raiders in Oakland rather than Las Vegas and the brand-new Allegiant Stadium.
“I’m very excited,” Jones said at February’s Scouting Combine, via Sports Illustrated. “I was excited to play that first preseason game against the Rams there in the Coliseum.”
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Jerry at ‘No Better Place’ as Cowboys Re-Open Star [LOOK]
For the first time since mid-March, Jones sat behind his desk at The Star in Frisco as the NFL permitted team facilities to re-open Tuesday.
The Cowboys were one of several clubs that met local and state requirements for non-essential businesses shuttered by COVID-19. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott was among the first of his field to undo lockdown measures he enacted to combat the virus.
In a video posted to the Cowboys’ official website, Jones is shown participating in a virtual owners meeting with his league counterparts.
“This is a big day for clubs all over the NFL and for our league as a whole, a big day for sports in general, a day for building confidence,” Jones said. “It’s great to be back in the office this morning. I thought there was no better place for me to participate in our virtual League meeting today than right here at my desk at The Star.”
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones returned to the Star today as NFL facilities begin to reopen. Coaches and players will wait a bit longer. But here’s a step forward…
— Jori Epstein (@JoriEpstein) May 19, 2020
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL