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Five winners, five losers, and a whole lot in between from the first win of the season for the Cowboys


NFL: New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys won for the first time in 2018 on Sunday night. It was glorious.

I’ve got a bit of a tradition following Cowboys wins, it’s called Victory Polo Monday. The rules are simple. All you have to do is wear a Cowboys polo, or really anything you want. VPM is a state of mind, a celebratory one, and it’s one that we all share. That’s the stuff.

What stuff went into victory numero uno, though? Who won besides the Cowboys? Who lost? What else? There’s else? There’s always else.

Here are BTB’s five winners, five losers, and all the else from Week 2’s victory over the Giants.

Winner: Those aboard the Tavon Austin hype train

There aren’t a lot of us, perhaps only dozens, but there have been people believing that Tavon Austin would be a thing in 2018. Yes, the Tavon Austin drafted in 2013. Early on Sunday, our own Dave Halprin predicted Austin would be the X-factor that swayed the game.

The Cowboys told us way back when that Tavon would be a “web back” for them, and we spent forever trying to figure out what that meant. We almost spent as long trying to decipher that term as the New York Giants did trying to catch him on his first catch at AT&T Stadium.

Is Tavon going to lead the league in receiving? Duh Obviously not. Tavon Austin does give the Cowboys something they really need, though. What’s that? Watch the video again, man. He gives them a playmaker, someone really fast, a person who can outrun the other team’s players. Pick any one of those and we can party.

There are those that have suggested Dallas utilize Austin the way that the Kansas City Chiefs do Tyreek Hill. While this connection wasn’t exactly Pat Mahomes it was one that he would be proud of. Congratulations on being our first winner, Tavon hypers.


The Dallas Cowboys had six sacks on Sunday night. They are in search of their sixth Super Bowl. Is that a coincidence? I THINK NOT.

Look, sacking Eli Manning six times doesn’t necessarily indicate that we’re going to be playing in Atlanta this February, but it definitely bodes well. Taco Charlton dubbed the Cowboys defensive line (and friends) the “Hot Boyz” during training camp, and these dudes are scorching right now.

Part of what makes the whole Hot Boyz renaissance a believable one is that its ringleader is kind of sort of maybe just a little bit on fire. That’s right, Taco Charlton ladies and gentlemen! Which leads me to...

Winner: Taco Charlton and all of the fantastic taco puns, emojis, and gifs

Taco has a great name to have some fun with. You know what I’m talking about. There are emojis, gifs, puns, and everything under the sun whenever his name comes up.

You know why all of that stuff comes up? Because Taco Charlton is kind of a boss right now. I’m not saying Taco is suddenly destined for Canton, but he’s a second-year first-round pass rusher and he’s justifying that so far and that’s a very good thing.

Team Taco stand up, please.

Winner: Those that love sad Eli Manning faces

Things really are so much better after wins. Onward!

Winner: Jaylon Smith’s Madden ratings

At one point during the Cowboys and Giants game the world saw Eli Manning sign over his life to Jaylon Smith. Re-live it in all its glory.

Jaylon was asked about his big-time hit after the game. Always conscious of what matters, he noted that his Madden ratings are likely on the rise.

They should be.

Loser: The Cowboys offense basically after the awesome Tavon touchdown and with the exception of the final real drive

We saw the Dallas Cowboys do a lot of insane things offensively. They threw on first down (gasp), ran some RPOs (double gasp), and let Dak Prescott throw deep (oh my). It was incredible. It was like that first cool dip on a hot summer’s day.

The thing though is that basically as soon as that happened the Cowboys decided that all of those things that worked for them shouldn’t be done anymore. Scott Linehan seriously took his foot off of the gas, and while the offense did grind out the game-winning touchdown at the end that’s not a strategy that is going to work week in and week out in the NFL.

Keep your foot on the gas, Cowboys. Please.

Loser: People that wanted to see a Rico Gathers touchdown

The internet almost broke twice on Sunday night. The first instance came when Dak Prescott scrambled and gave Rico Gathers a shot, and the second came when Dak overthrew Rico in the endzone. Can you imagine what would have happened had Rico caught a touchdown in the first home game of the season?

While it obviously would have been nifty to see Rico score we should remember how much the Cowboys did indeed use him. The rise of Rico might be a real thing after all.

Loser: The “Byron Jones should have stayed at safety” take

We’re not sure of a whole lot of things two weeks into this season, but one of the things you can lock up is that Byron Jones definitely belongs at cornerback.

It’s a little bewildering when you look back and realize that the Cowboys spent so much time trying to develop him at safety when he just fits at corner. Byron is kind of awesome at this.

Much praise has been given to the defensive line (see above), but the Cowboys secondary is low-key ballin out, too. Byron is a big reason why. Also shout out to Kris Richard because, well, obligatory and what not.

Loser: The idea of penalty-free football

It’s still early on in the season and there is definitely a level of rust on the Cowboys, and the rest of the NFL for that matter. This is where those that believe in it will argue that playing in the preseason holds some merit.

We saw the Cowboys take six penalties on Sunday night, for 47 yards. The Giants only had three (24), and that’s not good. Penalties can be drive killers, and in fact they killed a Cowboys drive twice on back-to-back occasions in unique fashion.

Dallas has to clean this up. Their season depends on it.

Loser: Non-Cowboys NFC East teams

These are the NFL teams in the NFC East:

These are the NFC East teams that won in Week 2:

  • Dallas Cowboys

Good times.

There you have it. We’ve got five winners, five losers, and a whole lot in between. Who were your winners? Who were your losers? What was your else? It’s Victory Polo Monday, baby!

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