CALL HIM BRETT “MUST-WIN” MAHER!!! 48-YARDS & IT IS GOOD!!! COWBOYS WIN!!
MY HEART WILL GO ON pic.twitter.com/FeyXoaF5M1— Blogging The Boys (@BloggingTheBoys) November 18, 2018
The Cowboys have all their timeouts left and their moving the ball. Prescott gets a strike to Cole Beasley to set the Cowboys up in field goal range. Zeke runs the ball a few more times and now it all rests on Brett Maher, who has been shaky over the last few weeks.
After the Cowboys are forced to punt on their next drive, the Falcons answer quickly with under four minutes to go. Matt Ryan hits Julio Jones on a deep 34-yard touchdown over Chido to tie this up with under two minutes to play.
Two plays and 31 yards later, Zeke is into the end zone, Cowboys lead is now 19-9. The Cowboys defense is quickly back out on the field and the Falcons take the ball 72-yards in eight plays. Facing a 3rd and 2 at the Dallas-3. Once again, the defense holds the Falcons to three. It’s now a seven point game.
The Falcons, facing 1st and 10 at their own 49, Ryan tosses it and it’s off the hands of Calvin Ridley into the hands of Leighton Vander Esch for the INTERCEPTION.
Two plays later, at the Atlanta 4-yard line, we get the first touchdown of the game as Dak takes the keeper in for the score. Then Brett Maher ruins it by missing the extra point, Dallas only takes the lead by three points. Dallas 12, Atlanta 9.
On Cowboys next drive, facing a third and short, Zeke gets it but FUMBLES...Thankfully, La’el Collins picks it up and advances it to keep the first down. Dak connects with Cooper to set the Cowboys up near the red zone. Dak finds Rod Smith for five or so yards as the third quarter ends. 9-6 heading into the fourth quarter for these teams.
Xavier Woods whiffs on a would-be tackle for loss that allows the Falcons running back to shake loose and get to the Dallas-40. Once again, the Cowboys defense holds and forces another 50+ yard field goal attempt. Atlanta takes the 9-6 lead as we’re all being lulled to sleep.
The Cowboys offense started out with Zeke carrying the load but finally got Amari Cooper involved. Cooper showed why the Cowboys sought after him as he climbed the ladder to catch a high pass by Prescott. The Cowboys pick up 13 on another long third down screen to Zeke. It didn’t convert but Brett Maher puts in a 50-yarder to tie the game at 6.
HALFTIME STATS:— Mike Leslie (@MikeLeslieWFAA) November 18, 2018
DAL -------- ATL
7 1st Downs 9
2-5 3rd Downs 5-9
110 Total Yards 143
48 Rush Yards 24
62 Pass Yards 119
12:22 TOP 17:38
It wouldn’t have bothered me if they had kneeled the clock out. They start the 3rd with the ball. That’s fine.— David Helman (@HelmanDC) November 18, 2018
But why the half-assed, aimless attempt to get to midfield, just to call it a half? That was so weird.
Like Yoda said: do or do not.
Falcons offense picks up a penalty and it’s 1st and 20, they pick up the deficit quickly though. After Jeff Heath can’t complete the interception due to taking a shot from Julio Jones, Mohammed Sanu keeps the drive going by converting a 3rd and 8. Finally, the Cowboys get off the field but not before the Falcons add another field goal, taking a 6-3 lead with :29 seconds left before the half. The Cowboys get some chunk yardage but not much else and the score stays right where it is.
Pinned deep in their own territory, that answer is a quick no after Dak gets sacked on 3rd and 4. That’s three in a row now where the Cowboys don’t get it done on third down and punt it back to Atlanta. The Cowboys have three points against the 30th ranked pass defense who also struggles to stop the run. Not a great start.
The Falcons go back to work but it doesn’t last long. Both Randy Gregory and DeMarcus Lawrence pick up sacks to give the Cowboys three sacks in less than two quarters. It’s also another big stop by the Cowboys defense to force the punt. Can the offense capitalize on the opportunities?
The Cowboys can’t get anything going on their next drive and punt it back to the Falcons after a three and out.
Dallas thwarts off the Falcons again on third down, Atlanta ties up the game at three. Holding the Falcons to three is a huge win because they have one of the best red zone percentages of any offense.
The Falcons next drive is off to hot start after Ryan picks on Chidobe Awuzie and sets up shop in Cowboys’ territory. Leighton Vander Esch comes up with another huge tackle to stop what could have been a nice gain. The first quarter ends with the Falcons knocking on the door.
On Cowboys first drive, Dak Prescott tries to hit Michael Gallup deep but they can’t connect. After a nice run by Ezekiel Elliott, Dak does connect with Geoff Swaim on third down for 12 yards. The Falcons help the Cowboys out on third down by picking up a holding call in the secondary. Zeke picks up eight on the next two plays and Cole Beasley gets the first to keep the drive alive. Dak finds Zeke on a huge screen that sets them up in the red zone but Cole Beasley drops an easy one on 2nd and goal. The Cowboys end up settling for the three-point lead but what a missed opportunity on a 15-play drive?!
The Cowboys won the toss and deferred. Falcons first drive is underway and Matt Ryan almost threw a pick to start but the ball skipped off the turf. Facing a 3rd and 5, the Falcons got generous spot though Jaylon Smith and Xavier Woods didn’t think he got there. Facing a 3rd and 10, DeMarcus Lawrence with the pressure and Cowboys sack Ryan back at the 50, forcing a punt.
Cowboys: QB Mike White, DL David Irving, DL Taco Charlton, DL Daniel Ross, DL Antwaun Woods, LB Sean Lee, WR Tavon Austin
That means that Connor Williams is active but as the backup to new left guard Xavier Su’a-Filo.
Falcons: K Giorgio Tavecchio, FB Ricky Ortiz, CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson, S Keith Tandy, LB Deion Jones, DE Steven Means, OT Matt Gono
It’s a big game for both teams. The 4-5 Dallas Cowboys will travel to Atlanta to take on the 4-5 Falcons. It’s a game both franchises desperately need to win to remain firmly in the playoff chase. Otherwise, the season could start slipping away.
The Cowboys are coming of a spirit-lifting win over the Philadelphia Eagles that has given the season a renewed hope. So much about the offense looked better last week. Amari Cooper’s presence is having an effect on the offense as a whole, and particularly on Dak Prescott. His completion percentage is up, third-down conversions are up, the offense looked crisper. The Cowboys were also able to run the ball all over Philly, thanks to a resurgent offensive line. Left guard replacement Xavier Su’a-Filo helped the line to be more consistent and the results were a solid win.
On defense, Leighton Vander Esch is turning into a star (grab a shirt if you’re in the mood). His play last week won him NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors and has made the Cowboys defense not reliant on Sean Lee. The secondary has a big task in front of them this week handling Julio Jones and the rest of the Falcons passing attack. The best way to stop that is to get in the face of Matt Ryan.
It’s a huge game, here’s how you can watch or listen to it.
What You Need To Know
Date: November 18th, 2018
Game time: 1:00 PM EST
Location: Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, GA
TV channel: FOX
Coverage Map: 506 Sports
Announcers: Kevin Burkhardt, Charles Davis
Cowboys record: (4-5)
Falcons record: (4-5)
Prediction: Dallas 31 - Atlanta 28
Enemy blog: The Falcoholic