That was certainly enjoyable. The Dallas Cowboys rolled over the Houston Texans by a score of 34-0 in a thoroughly dominant performance. While winning in such a fashion is always sweet, what you really want out of preseason (besides no injuries) is to learn some things about your team, especially things that might help this season or in the future.
The Cowboys certainly learned some things on Saturday night.
Devin Smith is legit
The Cowboys have been looking for a fifth receiver beyond the top four locks. They have seemingly found it. Devin Smith has been the Cowboys most productive receiver this preseason. The game against Houston was another feather in Smith’s helmet. Six catches for 79 yards led the Cowboys again. Smith is healthy and showing why he was a star all those years ago at Ohio State. It’s hard to envision him not making the roster.
Taco Charlton is providing hope
Taco Charlton was on the verge of being labeled a bust through his first two seasons. That could still happen, but his play has been on the rise this preseason and in the Texans game, he exploded. Charlton had two sacks, another sack nullified by penalty, caused two fumbles, recovered one and had a pass defensed. In one half of play! None of it will matter if he can’t produce in regular-season games, but he’s at least providing hope that it could happen.
Mike White can actually impersonate an NFL QB
Okay, it wasn’t a ground-breaking performance. It’s not going to change anything, but for a brief time Mike White actually looked... we’ll say competent. He went six for nine and one touchdown. He finished with an 128 QB rating. He didn’t take a sack or turn the ball over. For a brief moment in time, he looked like he sort of belonged.
Marcus Lucas is taking advantage
Who is Marcus Lucas? You might know him as Not Rico. The tight end who wears Gathers old number (80) has had two good games in a row. Last week he had four catches for 20 yards, this week he had four catches for 50 yards. He’s not likely to make the roster, but he surely has peaked the Cowboys interest.
Donovan Wilson is getting the ball
The rookie safety secured his second interception of the preseason against the Texans. He looked like he was going to get another one until C.J. Goodwin stole it way from him. He also chipped in a couple of tackles on the night. But it’s his ball-hawking skills that are catching the eye.
The Cowboys defensive line is Marianas Trench deep
We already discussed the phenomenal night from Taco Charlton. Kerry Hyder also had two sacks and was very disruptive. In all the Cowboys had eight sacks, with eight different players getting in on parts of a sack. Shakir Soto had a sack for goodness sake! This all happened without DeMarcus Lawrence, Tyrone Crawford and Robert Quinn. The Cowboys will have some hard decisions to make when they cut down this group.
Preseason is fool’s gold
Okay, the Cowboys didn’t actually learn this last night. It’s something they, with every other team, has known for a long time. Players put up incredible numbers or perform heroically in the preseason, only to flame out in the real games. So we have to tap the brakes just a bit on this 34-0 demolition. Still, would you rather be talking about a 34-0 loss in preseason? Nope. So while the preseason can be fool’s gold, it’s better than coming up totally empty.