Well we can officially say the this Dallas Cowboys football team has now hit rock bottom (or can we?). And if that wasn’t enough, they lost another quarterback in the process. Now the Cowboys have to prepare their young seventh-round quarterback Ben DiNucci to go up against the Philadelphia Eagles defense. But before we get into all of that, let’s grade the Cowboys game against the Washington Football Team.
This was an utter and complete failure on the part of the coaching staff as well as the players. The coaching staff did nothing to adjust for the lack of pass protection up front for quarterback Andy Dalton who was the sacrificial lamb this week. Then you have the players who just seemed like they didn’t even want to be on the field. Missed tackles and a lack of hustle showed on defense while the offense had dropped balls, another turnover, and no blocking up front to stop the Washington Football Team pass rush.
This isn’t a good football team and it’s time we all come to terms with it and start getting ready for next season. If you don’t, it’s going to be a long season.
The defense allowed one of the the worst offenses in the NFL to make them look like a juggernaut, and that is a shame. Defensive coordinator Mike Nolan needs to go now so they can find a someone to can teach these players how to play football again. I don’t know how you turn a top 15 defense last season into the laughing stock of the NFL.
Then you have offensive coordinator Kellen Moore who looks to have reverted back to his Scott Linehan playbook. Running the ball on first down and then trying to use screen passes and end arounds to pick up yards on third down and short situations, which never worked. Moore is looking more like a flash in the pan right now instead of the hot, young coordinator. It might be time for head coach Mike McCarthy to take over play-calling.
It’s hard to grade this position based on the fact that the starter was knocked out of the game and his replacement is a seventh-round pick that was thrust into an impossible situation. Neither had blocking up front for the time to find open receivers, instead they were continuously chased out of the pocket and forced to run for their lives. They also had to deal with dropped passes from their receiving core.
Overall the quarterbacks in this game got no help.
Running Backs: Incomplete
Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard are in the same boat in my opinion as the quarterbacks were in this game. The blocking upfront made it pretty much impossible for them to find any running lanes and ended up with their second-lowest rushing yardage total for the season with 83 yards on the ground. On a positive note, Elliott didn’t register a fumble in this game, so that’s a plus.
Wide Receivers: D
Now some may say that’s harsh for the receivers in this game because they also suffered because of the offensive lines struggles in this game. And you’d be right but for one thing, the dropped passes. They had chances to make plays and failed to do so. Cee Dee Lamb dropped a pass for a large chunk of yards and possible touchdown. They only receiver that looked like they came to play was Amari Cooper, who led the team with 80 yards on seven catches.
Tight Ends: D
Tight end Dalton Schultz was second on the team in receiving yards with 22 yards. But that’s not why this group is getting such a poor grade, it’s due to the fact that they were unable to hold their blocks against the Washington pass rushers. Schultz missed a block that resulted in a safety in the first quarter of the game. This group needs to get better in that aspect, they can’t just be pass catchers.
Offensive Line: F
Can I give a grade lower than an “F”? How about an “F-”, yeah that sounds about right. This group was, and will continue to be, the weak link on this offense and there is not much they can do to fix it. Completely missing blocks and getting pushed back into the quarterback now seem to be the norm for this group. They get Zack Martin back this week and that will help, but unless the tackles can keep people in front of them then it’s not going to change anything.
Defensive Line: D
You have to give them credit for getting two sacks. But once again the interior of the defensive line couldn’t stop the run. The Washington running backs hadn’t had a player get over 70 yards in a game until this week when Antonio Gibson went off for 128 yards. So it’s team to shake things up because it’s obvious that the players we have now can’t stop the run.
If the interior defensive line is bad then the play of the linebackers this week was horrible. Failing to fill gaps, missing tackles and costly penalties marred their play on the field. It’s funny how all the talk about Nolan was how well he coaches linebackers an he had two young emerging stars in Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith, and now they have seemingly regressed in front of us.
And now people are asking if we should the trade Jaylon Smith?
This wasn’t a good came for Trevon Diggs who was caught jawing with a Washington receiver and then on the next play was burned for a 52-yard touchdown. The safeties also couldn’t stop the opposing tight end who caught all four of his passes for 60 yards and a touchdown. It was another rough day for this secondary.
This was another all around loss by the entire football team. From the coaching staff down to the players. It getting to a point where owner Jerry Jones may step in and start making some changes to this team, on the coaching staff and roster.