The Dallas Cowboys offense managed to put up a measly four field goals in a loss to the Seattle Seahawks. The final score of 13-12 underscores a team that has fallen apart on offense, and you can no longer just blame it on injury to star players. Look around the league, plenty of teams have had to play with backups, some have won games, some have not, but for the most part they can at least put a touchdown on the board. The Cowboys offense has become so bad, it can't even manage that, most egregiously after being gifted the ball in the redzone on a Greg Hardy interception. Russell Wilson's tackle on Hardy preserved four points, enough to help the Seahawks to a win. It's become that bad for the Cowboys.
First it was Brandon Weeden, now it's Matt Cassel, but the song remains the same. An inability to safely push the ball downfield without turning it over. Cassel completed 13 passes for 97 yards against Seattle. He attempted 25 passes, so his day ended with a 3.9 yards average per pass attempt. That's basically Pop Warner numbers. And it's not like the line was playing poorly, he was given decent protection on the day. Whatever the reason, the Cowboys are unable to produce anything with their backup quarterbacks. We have to start throwing some of the blame at this coaching staff.
Over a month ago I called for Jason Garrett to get more aggressive. To eschew the field goal and go for it on fourth down on occasion. Try a fake punt or a fake field goal, do anything to try and shake this team out of its lackluster play. To date, Garrett has remain steadfastly conservative. This has led to nowhere. Scott Linehan proved he was an adept playcaller when he had a full arsenal of players. Minus a few, he's stumbled. Last week there was the new wrinkle of the jet sweep with Lucky Whitehead, but this week the Cowboys were pretty much their regular self except for a trick play with Darren McFadden. I actually applauded that play even though it went nowhere. At least it was a decent effort to try and crack the goal line.
For a final rant, why is it that Dallas can continually get burned by the "pick play" week after week, yet they won't run it for themselves on offense? Teams are absolutely killing Dallas on third downs with the play, Dallas seems unable to return the favor. It's understandable that this would not be the same team without Tony Romo, and a limited Dez Bryant wasn't a whole of help, but we can no longer excuse this coaching staff for not getting anything done without them, they have to share in the blame of this five-game losing streak.
It's such a shame, too. They finally have a defense that is holding up its end of the bargain.