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Philly's Kamu Grugier-Hill offers first jab in Eagles-Cowboys trash-talk fest

NFL, Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys

PHILADELPHIA -- Eagles linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill got the trash-talking started in earnest ahead of Sunday's pivotal game against the Cowboys, with comments that are sure to make their way onto Dallas' bulletin board.

"I mean, you look at Dallas' history, they always choke," Grugier-Hill said, via NBC Philadelphia, "so we'll go down there and make them choke."

The defending champion Eagles are starting to regain some swagger after winning two in a row to get to 6-6. With a win over the 7-5 Cowboys, they'll pull into first place in the NFC East.

But it's no gimme.

The Eagles lost their first matchup to Dallas 27-20 at Lincoln Financial Field on Nov. 11. That kick-started a four-game winning streak for the Cowboys, who are coming off an upset win over the New Orleans Saints. While Dallas has been resting since that Thursday night game, the Eagles have a quick turnaround after defeating the Washington Redskins on Monday night.

The Cowboys are listed as 3½-point home favorites. But quarterback Dak Prescott says he's not taking the bait. 

"Coach [Jason] Garrett has a great saying, and I don't know where he got it from, but, 'Winners worry about winning and losers worry about winners,'" Prescott said. "We're focused on ourselves in this locker room about what we need to do to get better in each and every phase of this game to be ready for this week. We're not worried about he say, she say."

Given what is at stake Sunday, the comment doesn't matter.

"When you play a team like this, a game like this that means what it means, what somebody says doesn't add any motivation," Prescott said.

Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz seemed to follow the same path.

"I don't want to dive into that at all," Wentz said. "[We have] respect for that team and what they are doing this year. We watch a ton of their defense. They do a lot of things well. They fly around and they make it tough on offenses. I don't want to dive into that. I just wanna say personally and as a team we have a lot of respect for them and we are excited for this one.

"I try not to make any game bigger than another game. That's the approach we all have. We don't treat it any differently."

The Eagles are 2-3 against Dallas under coach Doug Pederson, but they do own bragging rights when it comes to big moments in the rivalry of late, including a 24-22 win in Dallas in the 2013 regular-season finale to claim the division title.

Pederson, during a conference call with Dallas-area reporters Thursday, was asked if he's worried that Grugier-Hill's comments will become bulletin-board material for the Cowboys.

"It already is, isn't it?" he said. "Listen, I have a ton of respect for Jason Garrett and the Dallas org. I mean, this has always been a great rivalry. I played in this game before as a player, so I know what it's all about. And listen, it's going to be a good football game. ... I think it's already bulletin-board material, so we're well past that."

The Cowboys have an 80 percent chance to win the NFC East, according to ESPN FPI, while the Eagles have just a 14 percent chance. If Dallas can't close the deal, Grugier-Hill's words would have some extra weight to them.

Sunday will go a long way in deciding both teams' fates.

ESPN's Todd Archer contributed to this report.

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