Here is a look at the snap counts for each of the Dallas Cowboys' defensive players in Sunday’s 24-20 win against Detroit.
J.J. Wilcox: 70
Nick Hayden: 45
Kyle Wilber: 23
Josh Brent: 22
Defensive end Spencer continued his late-season surge, and it couldn’t come at a better time for the Cowboys. He played a season-high 40 snaps and finished the game with three tackles and a sack, and forced a fumble in the fourth quarter that would have ended the game if DeMarcus Lawrence had fallen on the ball instead of fumbling, while returning it. And late in the third quarter, he made a great play on third down when he sniffed out a screen, stopped his rush and disrupted the play.
Linebacker Butch Carter did yeoman’s work with 64 snaps because of injuries to Rolando McClain (concussion) and Anthony Hitchens (ankle). Carter finished with five tackles and three pass deflections, and is playing his best football of the season at the right time.
Lawrence played 31 snaps, the third straight game of more than 30, and clinched the win with his first career sack, forced fumble and fumble recovery in the final minute. It was a moment of redemption after he recovered a fumble nine plays earlier, but gave the ball back to Detroit when he fumbled trying to return it.
McClain played just 20 snaps because he was battling dehydration. While he was being treated for that, the Cowboys gave him a cognitive test that he didn’t pass. McClain still finished with five tackles.
Linebacker Wilber played 23 snaps, his highest total in seven games, and contributed a key third-quarter interception and a pass deflection.