Cowboys: Dak returns

Greg29fan

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A lot of people on Twitter pointed to the 2018 game @ Indy where they never showed up and got shut out. That also came on the heels of a five-game win streak, too.
 

TFisNEXT

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A lot of people on Twitter pointed to the 2018 game @ Indy where they never showed up and got shut out. That also came on the heels of a five-game win streak, too.
Oh man, totally forgot about that one. Very similar. Good call.

Cowboys were playing really good football the 2nd half of 2018 too (after the Amari Cooper trade) and that game was just a total turd. I actually think that was their only loss from week 9 until they were eliminated in the divisional round of the playoffs that season.
 

Greg29fan

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No Amari Cooper tomorrow or on Thanksgiving b/c of a COVID positive and not being vaccinated.

 

TFisNEXT

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They really could have used Cooper against KC too. Luckily for the Cowboys, Michael Gallup is back but losing Cooper still stings.
 

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That was about as bad as Dallas has played on offense with Dak at QB since maybe the December 2019 Eagles game. Just a horrific showing against a pretty bad defense. Even if we want to be charitable and say KC's defense is a lot better than 1-2 months ago, they are still not a unit that should make the Cowboys offense look inept. Even before CeeDee Lamb was knocked out, they looked awful. Terence Steele looked overmatched and Dak had happy feet all game. They really could use Tyron Smith back (he almost played yesterday but they sat him again).

Only plus side for them was the defense looked pretty solid. Micah Parsons is really developing into a huge playmaker. Running down Mahomes from behind like that and getting the strip sack for a turnover reminded me of peak DeMarcus Ware. The defense could be a pretty damned good unit when Demarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory are back soon. That is actually a pretty terrifying trio of DEs they can throw at opposing QBs.
 

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That was about as bad as Dallas has played on offense with Dak at QB since maybe the December 2019 Eagles game. Just a horrific showing against a pretty bad defense. Even if we want to be charitable and say KC's defense is a lot better than 1-2 months ago, they are still not a unit that should make the Cowboys offense look inept. Even before CeeDee Lamb was knocked out, they looked awful. Terence Steele looked overmatched and Dak had happy feet all game. They really could use Tyron Smith back (he almost played yesterday but they sat him again).

Only plus side for them was the defense looked pretty solid. Micah Parsons is really developing into a huge playmaker. Running down Mahomes from behind like that and getting the strip sack for a turnover reminded me of peak DeMarcus Ware. The defense could be a pretty damned good unit when Demarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory are back soon. That is actually a pretty terrifying trio of DEs they can throw at opposing QBs.
It was as bad as they played two weeks ago against Denver. Since the calf, Dak is not the same. These calf injuries this year have been so odd.

Without Cooper and Lamb, obviously, it got much worse.
 

TFisNEXT

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It was as bad as they played two weeks ago against Denver. Since the calf, Dak is not the same. These calf injuries this year have been so odd.

Without Cooper and Lamb, obviously, it got much worse.
I thought the offense actually looked worse than the Denver game....the Denver game was horrible no doubt, but Dak missed some wide open throws and the receivers dropped several passes. The plays were there to be had and they just had poor execution. The KC game was different in that they looked overmatched for much of the day. Dak wasn't exactly sharp (missing Gallup wide open on the first play from scrimmage was bad), but he wasn't as off as the Denver game.

Probably a semantical distinction on how the offense failed each game....but the KC game was more concerning to me because they actually looked inept...not merely just dropping balls and missing several open throws. Hopefully the calf isn't a lingering issue for Dak.
 

TFisNEXT

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This team is starting to resemble some of those previous Dallas teams that won the division at 10-6 or 11-5 but don’t make t pst the divisional round.

I’m willing to see how they play with most of their horses back (D Lawrence, R Gregory, Amari Cooper and CeeDee all may be back next game) but there’s an awful lot of red flags recently. That defensive performance yesterday was amazingly terrible. The Raiders have some weapons but they aren’t THAT good. Certainly shouldn’t be giving up 500+ yards and 7 scores to that group.

Ironically then offense yesterday did their job considering they were sans their two top WR.

This team prob has to run the table or lose only 1 more game for me to take them seriously as a contender.
 

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I thought the game was poorly played by both teams with a silly amount of penalties. Exactly what one expects from a second half the season Dallas team and any Raiders team. Poorly coached teams. It’s criminal that Dallas keeps running Elliott when Pollard is so explosive & Zeke is toast.
 

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This team is starting to resemble some of those previous Dallas teams that won the division at 10-6 or 11-5 but don’t make t pst the divisional round.

I’m willing to see how they play with most of their horses back (D Lawrence, R Gregory, Amari Cooper and CeeDee all may be back next game) but there’s an awful lot of red flags recently. That defensive performance yesterday was amazingly terrible. The Raiders have some weapons but they aren’t THAT good. Certainly shouldn’t be giving up 500+ yards and 7 scores to that group.

Ironically then offense yesterday did their job considering they were sans their two top WR.

This team prob has to run the table or lose only 1 more game for me to take them seriously as a contender.
Minus Waller.
 

TFisNEXT

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Minus Waller.
Yep. It was an unexpected disaster by the defense and it cost them the game. A defense that had been playing fairly well most of the season given they have been without Gregory and D lawrence for a chunk of it.

As frustrating as the offense has been the past few weeks, they played fine yesterday...especially taking into account they didn’t have Cooper or CeeDee Lamb. They put up enough good drives and points to win.

Like i said earlier, I’m maybe willing to re-evaluate the team’s status as a contender if they start steamrolling again when DLaw, Gregory, Cooper, and CeeDee are all back (all 4 may be back next game)....but this looks eerily familiar to those typical 10-6 #4 seed teams that bow out in the second round.
 

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and now they have a full blow COVID outbreak to put the cherry on the crap sundae. They might be able to eek one out against a truly horrible Saints team, but I'm not counting on it.
 

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and now they have a full blow COVID outbreak to put the cherry on the crap sundae. They might be able to eek one out against a truly horrible Saints team, but I'm not counting on it.
Seems like the only real player of note who would miss right now is Terence Steele. With Collins and Tyron Smith back though, it isn't terrible unless one of them gets hurt or also gets covid. Amari Cooper cleared covid protocol so he should be back against the Saints.

Mike McCarthy missing the game might actually be worth a couple points for the Cowboys....lol
 

TFisNEXT

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Amazing how methodically this offense has descended into mediocrity. Ever since the Dak calf injury. Hopefully they figure it out in the final month here.

The defense though....that D-line with Randy Gregory, Demarcus Lawrence, Neville Gallimore , and Micah Parsons playing edge all healthy is turning into a scary unit. They dominated yesterday and made sure the offense's boneheaded mistakes and miscues didn't end up costing them the game.
 

Greg29fan

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Dallas was a big winner today. All but wrapped up the east and moved from 4th to 2nd in the conference. I still have a lot of concerns about the offense but maybe the defense can carry them for once.
 

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Dallas was a big winner today. All but wrapped up the east and moved from 4th to 2nd in the conference. I still have a lot of concerns about the offense but maybe the defense can carry them for once.
Yup. Dallas has a real shot at the top seed now although I think GB likely takes it. But moving from 4 to 2 would be huge. Sets them up to avoid a dangerous SF squad in wild card round while giving them home field in a potential Rams/Bucs matchup in divisional.

The offense hasn’t really clicked for a while but I wonder how much of that is a byproduct of Zeke and Dak’s injuries. The talent level is still elite. Weird to see Cooper so much of a non factor. He seems to be running a little slow to me. Schultz has turned in another solid season. Dude just has a knack for getting open and Dak clearly looks for him.
 

TFisNEXT

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Yup. Dallas has a real shot at the top seed now although I think GB likely takes it. But moving from 4 to 2 would be huge. Sets them up to avoid a dangerous SF squad in wild card round while giving them home field in a potential Rams/Bucs matchup in divisional.

The offense hasn’t really clicked for a while but I wonder how much of that is a byproduct of Zeke and Dak’s injuries. The talent level is still elite. Weird to see Cooper so much of a non factor. He seems to be running a little slow to me. Schultz has turned in another solid season. Dude just has a knack for getting open and Dak clearly looks for him.
Dak and Amari are definitely not 100% based on the eye test. They could really each use a couple weeks off, but with the #2 seed at stake, they probably won't. They need them healthy to have a shot in the playoffs.

You could envision a scenario where the Cowboys become really scary if Dak/Amari get healthy and the offense clicks like they did pre-Dak calf injury...esp with the defense really playing excellent football now with the D-line at full strength. But unfortauntely I don't really have a lot of optimism for the offense to get back to that.
 

TFisNEXT

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Dak and Amari are definitely not 100% based on the eye test. They could really each use a couple weeks off, but with the #2 seed at stake, they probably won't. They need them healthy to have a shot in the playoffs.

You could envision a scenario where the Cowboys become really scary if Dak/Amari get healthy and the offense clicks like they did pre-Dak calf injury...esp with the defense really playing excellent football now with the D-line at full strength. But unfortauntely I don't really have a lot of optimism for the offense to get back to that.
Should bump this to say Dak looked healthy for the first time since the calf injury in OT against the Patriots. If he’s actually back and healthy, then it definitely changes the expectations of this team going into January.
 

Greg29fan

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Team said all week this was a statement game and the statement is they are the same old Cowboys.

Now they probably get Arizona again in two weeks.
 

BigSoxFan

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Team said all week this was a statement game and the statement is they are the same old Cowboys.

Now they probably get Arizona again in two weeks.
Costly loss. Murray looks very comfortable in that stadium and the RPO baffled the Cowboys. Lost contain a ton. Much to work on. The rematch should go the Cowboys’ way but now the path to LA gets much harder.
 

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Cowboys played a terrible game and still almost came back there....it's not encouraging that they played so poorly for a good chunk of the game, but I'm pretty sure they'd beat the Cardinals if they even bring their B game if a playoff rematch occurs.

Biggest problem with the loss is it takes the Cowboys out of the 2 seed hunt. I just don't think this team can win two games on the road to get to the SB. They are not consistent enough. This team runs too hot and cold. The run game has been sneaky awful for a while now and the offense won't get back to being elite until they can run the ball again. If they can't run the ball in the playoffs, they won't win more than one game...if any.
 

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I can't figure this team out. The Gallup loss seems significant.
Cedric Wilson has been really good this year in place of Gallup....in fact, the offense was smoking hot the first 6 weeks without Gallup and Wilson in his place as the 3rd WR.

Losing Gallup sucks, but Wilson is a very good 4th WR who can step into the WR3 spot. The decline of the run game has been the biggest issue for Dallas IMHO. Dak's injury didn't help either, but he looks a lot healthier now than 3-4 weeks ago. Dallas was running the ball crazy good in the first 6-8 weeks and have been flat out terrible since then...not just average.
 

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Cedric Wilson has been really good this year in place of Gallup....in fact, the offense was smoking hot the first 6 weeks without Gallup and Wilson in his place as the 3rd WR.

Losing Gallup sucks, but Wilson is a very good 4th WR who can step into the WR3 spot. The decline of the run game has been the biggest issue for Dallas IMHO. Dak's injury didn't help either, but he looks a lot healthier now than 3-4 weeks ago. Dallas was running the ball crazy good in the first 6-8 weeks and have been flat out terrible since then...not just average.
Agree on Gallup. With CeeDee, Coop, Schultz as the top 3, the Cowboys will be fine. Wilson has really impressed me this year when I watched him. Didn’t he also make the game saving catch against the Pats?

The lack of the running game has been a huge issue. Zeke looks like he’s running in quicksand. Not explosive at all. Pollard doesn’t quite seem to have the same burst either. If I were Dallas, I would strongly consider sitting both this week. They won’t but I don’t think a one-dimensional Cowboys team gets past the Divisional Round. They need their RBs healthy. Everything else is seemingly in place for a deep run. This team has all the pieces.
 

TFisNEXT

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Agree on Gallup. With CeeDee, Coop, Schultz as the top 3, the Cowboys will be fine. Wilson has really impressed me this year when I watched him. Didn’t he also make the game saving catch against the Pats?

The lack of the running game has been a huge issue. Zeke looks like he’s running in quicksand. Not explosive at all. Pollard doesn’t quite seem to have the same burst either. If I were Dallas, I would strongly consider sitting both this week. They won’t but I don’t think a one-dimensional Cowboys team gets past the Divisional Round. They need their RBs healthy. Everything else is seemingly in place for a deep run. This team has all the pieces.
I agree on resting them. The Saturday game vs Philly is virtually meaningless. They can theoretically get the 3 seed if they win that game and both LAR and ARZ lose....but why risk your health and hope for that? 3 seed vs 4 seed is a marginal difference and counting on both LAR/ARZ to lose is low probability.

Dallas should rest several starters on Saturday night. Or maybe play them a couple series if they are worried about rust and then pull them. Getting extra rest for Tyron Smith would be good too. If they can have him close to 100% for the playoffs, that makes a big difference.

I also agree that Dallas has all the pieces if they can get their running game going. The defense has turned into a very solid unit. The Cowboys just need to give them a breather when they need it and not being able to run the ball has cost them a few times. In the Arizona game, the offense a couple of dismal possessions in a row that gave the defense basically no rest. Probably cost them that game not only due to lack of points on those offensive drives, but also the defense looked just about out of gas on that final Arizona drive where they needed a stop.
 

TFisNEXT

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Actually DAL can still get the 2 seed if TB, LAR and ARZ all lose and they win....that would produce a 3-way tie with DAL/LAR/TB at 12-5 which DAL would win based on conference record.

Still seems very low probability versus the injury risk playing that road game in PHilly with all your starters. But the 2 seed is admittedly a lot more appealing than a 3 given the good chance of a divisional round home game.
 

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Actually DAL can still get the 2 seed if TB, LAR and ARZ all lose and they win....that would produce a 3-way tie with DAL/LAR/TB at 12-5 which DAL would win based on conference record.

Still seems very low probability versus the injury risk playing that road game in PHilly with all your starters. But the 2 seed is admittedly a lot more appealing than a 3 given the good chance of a divisional round home game.
Yeah, the loss yesterday was so costly. They would have faced a much easier WC opponent and then would have hosted TB/LA instead of going there. As crazy as it sounds, I think I’d want to play Brady, if I’m Dallas. This DL is great at rushing the passer but they can get undisciplined. Give me Brady without his Godwin/AB security blankets and probably a banged up Fournette. Put Diggs on Evans and focus on Gronk. We’ll see if this matchup materializes but it’s the one I want to see.
 

TFisNEXT

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Yeah, the loss yesterday was so costly. They would have faced a much easier WC opponent and then would have hosted TB/LA instead of going there. As crazy as it sounds, I think I’d want to play Brady, if I’m Dallas. This DL is great at rushing the passer but they can get undisciplined. Give me Brady without his Godwin/AB security blankets and probably a banged up Fournette. Put Diggs on Evans and focus on Gronk. We’ll see if this matchup materializes but it’s the one I want to see.
I agree DAL would be a pretty bad matchup for TB given TB's injuries.

I don't think LAR is a bad matchup for DAL either. They are a tough team no doubt, but Stafford isn't super mobile these days and they lost Robert Woods for the season earlier this year. They would be tougher to score on though than TB would. I honestly think GB is pretty vulnerable too...they are decimated by injuries. Dallas might be the healthiest team of the contenders but not having a top 2 seed is a killer.
 

Oil Can Dan

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This team is just so boom or bust. It's like Diggs; I saw some stat that showed he's given up over 1,000 yards this season but has those 11 interceptions. Boom or bust. I know the NFL is a week-to-week league but this team seems to take that to the next level.
 

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This team is just so boom or bust. It's like Diggs; I saw some stat that showed he's given up over 1,000 yards this season but has those 11 interceptions. Boom or bust. I know the NFL is a week-to-week league but this team seems to take that to the next level.
I think a decent amount of the “bust” this year has been related to injuries, particularly to Dak and Zeke. The defense is an aggressive bunch so there will be games where they get burned. Diggs is a tough guy to figure out. His INT numbers are eye popping but he does get toasted a lot. But he has also erased McLaurin twice so I think there is real shutdown potential here. I feel like Parsons is the guy who makes the defense go. He got caught staring at Murray a lot yesterday but his physical talent is just so impressive.
 

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Old school playoff matchup. 49ers at Cowboys.

Last time that happened in Dallas was the 1993 NFC Championship game. Dallas creamed them. 49ers would get revenge at Candlestick the very next year in the ‘94 NFCCG. That was the defacto Super Bowl back then.
 

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Fitting it is on CBS too since all their classic playoff matchups were outside the 94 championship game.

49ers have a stout running game and Dallas struggled pretty badly against a bunch of backups against Philly on Saturday night. They should have the defensive starters they were missing back, but I don't think this is a particularly good matchup for them. The offense needs to put some points up and make Jimmy G beat them.
 

Oil Can Dan

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This should be a great game. The Dallas D is the best in football at taking the ball away and Jimmy G is prone to turnovers. Should be a fun watch...
 

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Micah Parsons and Tyron Smith are off Covid protocol. They were expected to be off it this week but it’s good they have actually cleared now. Those two are obviously very important players. Parsons is a huge piece against the 49ers run/screen game.

Jayron Kearse is still on Covid list but should come off in the next couple days.
 

TFisNEXT

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So, what's gonna happen vs SF on Sunday? Who ya got?
Hard to get a read on this Cowboys team. If they come out on offense on all cylinders, SF prob won’t have much of a chance to hang with them. But they’ve been so inconsistent considering they are the #1 offense in both scoring and in yardage. DVOA has them a more modest #6 on offense.

The Dallas defense is really good at taking the ball away…esp since the pass rush came to full force when Demarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory got healthy…and I feel this is where the game may be decided. Jimmy G can sometimes be a little loose with the football so if he’s being harassed and turns it over once or twice, that very well may sink the Niners. On the flip side, Dallas can be vulnerable to the big play, so if they aren’t getting a turnover or two, they could be in for a disappointing afternoon.

My gut says this game ends up a dogfight but Cowboys pull it out late.
 

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Can the Cowboys stop Mitchell and the niners run game? That’s going to decide the game.

Shanahan is going to try and just keep the ball and keep Dak off the field. And the niners do have the run game to do it.
 

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Deebo & Kittle are both great players. Can they dominate?

big edge to me is coaching

Zeke will be an anchor - McCarthy won’t adjust to more Pollard who is explosive while Zeke has lost that part of his game.
 

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Can the Cowboys stop Mitchell and the niners run game? That’s going to decide the game.

Shanahan is going to try and just keep the ball and keep Dak off the field. And the niners do have the run game to do it.
Yeah if the Cowboys only have 7-8 possessions, they will lose. They want to keep the game up-tempo and have 10-12 possessions per side.
 

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So the latest I heard is that around 80% of the money wagered on the Dal/SF game has been on SF. Everyone loves SF. Dallas is an afterthought with a joke of a coach who will undoubtedly make multiple gaffes tomorrow.

As gross as it makes me feel, Dallas is going to win this game.
 

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I think Dallas is good enough to make the Super Bowl, but I don't like this particular matchup for them. Not to say I think SF wins because I think that Dallas will pull it out, but I do think it will be close. If Dak gets into a groove though it could get away from SF quickly. I don't think SF can overcome a 17 point deficit like they did vs the Rams because Dak > Stafford.
 

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So the latest I heard is that around 80% of the money wagered on the Dal/SF game has been on SF. Everyone loves SF. Dallas is an afterthought with a joke of a coach who will undoubtedly make multiple gaffes tomorrow.

As gross as it makes me feel, Dallas is going to win this game.
Yeah, I think we see “good” Dallas this week. I’m expecting a strong performance and Cowboys W.