The Dallas Cowboys are winners of two in a row, having scored at least 30 points in each of those contests. Watch out, record books.
Seriously though, Dak Prescott really threw for a career high in terms of yards, so records aren’t above being talked about.
Sunday was an impressive outing for the Dallas Cowboys, for a lot of reasons. There are some that are important, some that are small, and a whole bunch that people are going to fixate on.
Welcome to BTB’s 10 Predictable Headlines, where we tell you what the world is going to say. Shall we begin?
Dak Prescott is officially a franchise quarterback
The status of the second-year quarterback has been one that’s come under fire at times this season, most notably during the team’s three-game losing streak. It seems like that time has come and gone.
Dak Prescott was arguably the best player for the Cowboys in New York (Sean Lee), doing everything he needed to keep his team in it. Over 300 yards, three touchdowns, this is exactly what we needed to see in the absence of Ezekiel Elliott.
Dak is back, folks.
Rod Smith needs to be given more touches
Is Rod Smith officially the better Smith brother on the Cowboys at the moment? Are we finally ready to all officially say it?
If you ranked position groups across the NFL, the Cowboys running backs would have to be in the conversation in terms of who’s the best. Rod Smith had his coming out party in New York, both on the ground and in the air.
At some point Ezekiel Elliott will be back, the season will inevitably end, Alfred Morris will probably leave, and Rod Smith will be this team’s RB2. Is anyone opposed to giving him his fair share of work when he owns that role in 2018? Nope? Good.
Dez Bryant is no longer an elite wide receiver
He may have had an insane catch-and-run for a touchdown, but Sunday in New York was not Dez Bryant’s finest hour.
The Dallas Cowboys all-time leader in receiving touchdowns struggled early on with a bad case of the drops. 2017 hasn’t been his most stellar season, and people are wondering whether he’s still a legit WR1.
The reality is that Dez Bryant is no longer the Dez Bryant that we used to know. That part is true. Whether he’s a WR1 or not, well let’s just say he’s at the very least the Dallas Cowboys WR1, which is what he needs to be for now.
Anthony Hitchens needs to get paid this offseason
You know who’s an awesome linebacker for the Dallas Cowboys? Sean Lee and/or Anthony Hitchens. Pick your poison.
Sean Lee and Anthony Hitchens have combined for 12 tackles so far today.— David Helman (@HelmanDC) December 10, 2017
The Giants are still in the middle of their 1st possession.
It’s pretty amazing what Hitchens has been able to do this season given that during the preseason dress rehearsal against Oakland, many thought he was going to miss it all completely. He is a star at linebacker for this team.
There are still three games to go in the regular season, but it’s hard to look at offseason priorities and not have Anthony Hitchens at the very top. Given the health seesaw that Sean Lee has been and likely will be, his presence is critical.
The Cowboys are going to be fine when they move on from Orlando Scandrick
It may have been Eli Manning and the 2017 New York Giants, but the Cowboys held the quarterback they faced on Sunday to just 228 yards and picked him off twice.
Defensively the Cowboys were mildly impressive throughout the day. They got stops when they needed, and they kept the team in the game until the fourth quarter when everything broke open for the offense.
Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis, and Xavier Woods are all going to learn and grow together in this system for some time (although to be fair the system could change). The rookies have played well, and so much so that veteran Orlando Scandrick wasn’t even missed.
Jason Witten is still the GOAT
If we’re being honest, Jason Witten had a really costly holding penalty that has kind of become somewhat accepted of him over time given who he is and his career contributions.
However, Jason Witten also literally averaged a touchdown every reception throughout this game. It was literally only one reception and touchdown, but math is math!
The point here is, Jason Witten can get it done. Whatever time, whatever place, whatever else, there will always be Gold Jacket Witt.
We’re all the most basic minimum level of worry worried about Dan Bailey
Dan Bailey missed a field goal in this game and we all chalked it up to whatever we felt like. No big deal, everybody misses.
After that, Dan Bailey missed a second field goal. At this point, we put down our sodas. We squinted our eyes. We all began to wonder if something was amuck when it came to Danny boy.
Something was definitely amuck.
DAN BAILEY MISSED AN EXTRA POINT FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER AND IT WAS HORRIBLE.
Yes, Bailey literally had a point of inaccuracy that was previously unbeknownst to him. This was a dark day for his golden foot.
Logic says that Dan Bailey will be alright but, not to put him at all in this company, we all watched Nick Folk fade as a member of the Cowboys.
This game hardly proves the Cowboys are back in sync
If you’re honest with yourself, this game was pretty terrible for a large majority.
Early in the fourth quarter, the Cowboys were tied with the Giants all at 10. It was an uncomfortable place to be in against a 2-10 football team.
As mentioned, things exploded in the perfect way for Dallas throughout their fourth quarter. While there was certainly skill involved, it was unquestionably aided by some certain breaks.
Dallas must win out to have a shot at the playoffs, but they will unlikely ever have such a fortuitous quarter along the way. They need to find a way to be that team far more often, or else they won’t always be where they want to be.
Jeff Heath might actually be somewhat of the GOAT
Look, Jeff Heath isn’t really the greatest player of all time, but he might be the greatest player of all time.
In all seriousness, Jeff Heath makes some terrible plays, but for whatever reason, he always happens to be in the most important places at the right time. NFL players sometimes have a way about them in that sense.
We are living in a world where it is very possible that the last pass Eli Manning ever threw against the Cowboys while wearing a Giants uniform was intercepted by Jeff Heath— RJ Ochoa (@rjochoa) December 10, 2017
There are many, many, times where Jeff Heath is a liability. There are also actually sort of many times where Jeff Heath is pretty incredible. Jeff Heath is as Jeff Heath does.
The Cowboys are still alive in the playoff hunt
Dallas got a small bit of help from across the NFL, and amazingly it came courtesy of the Jacksonville Jaguars.
As we’ve been discussing for some time now, the Cowboys have to finish 10-6 if they want any chance at earning a ticket to the playoff dance. There is a lot between now and the end of the regular season that is out of the Cowboys control, but for what it’s worth, they’re doing their part.