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Cowboys in the Pro Bowl don’t fare too well, including the coaching staff

It probably wasn’t the “debut” Kellen Moore and company were hoping for.

NFL: Pro Bowl Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Let’s get the elephant out of the room. It was the Pro Bowl, an exhibition game where everybody plays at half-speed and the referees stop the tackling at first contact. It’s not exactly the environment where you can judge anything. Regardless, Cowboys fans were tuned in to see what kind of game presumptive offensive coordinator Kellen Moore would call. Much to their disappointment, it kind of looked like Scott Linehan’s offense. The huge caveat here is that Moore has not had any real time to alter the scheme, and given that he was working with a whole set of players he doesn’t know, sticking to the basics was likely all we were going to get. Still, scoring only seven points in an All-Star game where defense is suspect is not the best look.

There were some wrinkles, such as when the Cowboys offensive coaches decided to give Ezekiel Elliott a direct snap.

Zeke also got some action on a fake punt.

One moment that had to give the Cowboys faithful heartburn was a fourth-and-two call right around the goal line. Given it was the Pro Bowl, and with all options available with no real pressure, the Cowboys coaching staff chose to.... run a dive play up the middle. It got stuffed. Any call but that one would have made Cowboys fans happy.

Before we get too carried away, it was a meaningless game with little prep time and an assortment of players who didn’t really know each other and were playing at varying levels of aggressiveness. It’s not really the ideal way to judge anything. With that said, it would have been exciting to see a little more creativity besides a handful of gadget/trick plays.


  • Overall, the Cowboys-coached NFC squad put up only 148 offensive yards with one touchdown. The AFC put up over 400 yards on offense and scored 26 points.
  • Dak Prescott went 4 for 11 with one touchdown and one interception for a 41.9 rating.
  • Ezekiel Elliott ran for 33 yards on three carries but 22 of that came on the fake punt. He also caught two passes for 14 yards
  • Amari Cooper had one catch for eight yards, though he was targeted five times.
  • Leighton Vander Esch led the NFC in tackles with seven total (six solo).
  • DeMarcus Lawrence had one tackle for loss.
  • Byron Jones had one tackle and one pass defensed.

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