DEN 30, DAL 16: Cowboys Get Shut Down, Streak Ended by Visiting Broncos- Jess Haynie, Inside The Star
Don’t let the score deceive you, it was not a close game for the Cowboys.
An anomaly or the end of the party? That’s the question for the Dallas Cowboys after one of their ugliest losses in recent memory. Their six-game win streak crashed and burned today in a 30-0 humiliation from the visiting Denver Broncos.
It was a classic “bad day at the office” for Dallas; a game where about everything that could go wrong did. From dropped passes to missed throws on offense, big mistakes on defense, and one of the oddest special teams plays you’ll ever see, the Cowboys put an exclamation point on this defeat.
That said, hope was still alive at halftime. While they trailed 16-0 at the break, Dallas top-ranked offense usually has the juice to overcome that deficit.
The hope skyrocketed when the Cowboys forced a 3-and-out on Denver’s first possession of the 3rd Quarter, then Malik Turner blocked the punt and seemed to set Dallas up in the redzone. But in an obscure rule enforcement, because Nahshon Wright touched the ball and a Broncos player then recovered it, Denver kept the ball and then marched it for another field goal.
That sequence seemed to take the life out of the Cowboys’ sails. Subsequent drives died the same they had in the first half with dropped passes, sacks, and overthrows from Prescott on open receivers.
If not for garbage time touchdown passes from Dak to Malik Turner, the Cowboys might have suffered their first shutout since 2003.
In a game where it seemed like every play went wrong for the Cowboys, these five shaped Dallas’ loss.
Punt block that wasn’t – You know it’s not your day when you block a punt and still don’t get a turnover on downs. Even without a block by Malik Turner, the Cowboys are getting the ball around midfield down 16-0 to start the second half. But a crazy sequence saw the deflection bounce off of Nahshon Wright and into the hands of Jonas Griffith, resulting in a rare ruling that gave Denver a first down. The Broncos were able to drive for a field goal and a 19-0 lead.
Cooper’s drop over the middle – There were a lot of dropped passes in this game, but a third-down miscue by Amari Cooper in the third quarter was as big as any. As Dak Prescott was getting blitzed, he fired a pass to Cooper, who had broken away and seemed to have plenty of room to run into Denver territory. But he dropped the pass and the Cowboys failed to convert on fourth down, keeping the score at 19-0.
Mike McCarthy: Cowboys Were ‘Outcoached ... Outplayed All the Way Through’ by Broncos- Joseph Zucker, Bleacher Report
The Cowboys’ head coach comments on Sundays’ performance.
The Dallas Cowboys might have only lost to the Denver Broncos by two scores, 30-16, but head coach Mike McCarthy thought it was as comprehensive defeat as you’re going to find in Week 9.
“We were outcoached, we were outplayed all the way through,” McCarthy told reporters. “This is the first time I felt our energy didn’t exceed our opponent’s, and that was disappointing. … We weren’t the most physical team today.”
This was probably the kind of showing fans expected last week, when Dak Prescott was ruled out because of a calf injury.
Prescott was back under center on Sunday and had his worst performance of the season. He finished 19-of-39 for 232 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. His stats got inflated by a pair of touchdown drives in the fourth quarter, when the outcome was already decided.
It’s hard to pick just three.
2. Dan Quinn
The entirety of the Cowboys defense looked miserable against the Broncos. Denver isn’t exactly a team that anyone should struggle mightily against, and that’s especially true for a team that wants to be a Super Bowl contender, like the Cowboys are hoping to be.
On Sunday, Dan Quinn’s defense gave up 409 total yards of offense to Denver and Teddy Bridgewater looked phenomenal, throwing for 249 yards and a touchdown while completing 67.8 percent of his passes.
1. Dak Prescott
Nobody on the Cowboys roster struggled more Sunday than quarterback Dak Prescott did. It seems like there’s a very good chance that Prescott isn’t 100 percent healthy as this was an uncharacteristically awful game for Dallas’ quarterback.
Grading the Cowboys: Mike McCarthy didn’t get Dallas ready to play as all goes wrong vs. Broncos- Jean-Jacques Taylor, DMN
Not everyone deserves an F for their performance on Sunday.
Malik Turner’s blocked punt appeared to change the game’s momentum, but the ball skidded past the line of scrimmage and Nahshon Wright touched the ball, making it live, and Denver recovered. Pollard had kick returns of 54 and 35 yards.
Defensive coordinator Dan Quinn and play-caller Kellen Moore have been outstanding this season, but their respective units were awful Sunday. Quinn had no answer for Denver’s running game and Moore’s offense went 0-for-4 on fourth down and never solved Denver’s pass defense. Mike McCarthy went for it on fourth down twice in the first quarter, and each one failed, which helped Denver seize control of the game emotionally.
Mike McCarthy, for the first time this season, did not have his club ready to play. The Cowboys were sleep-walking from the start and Denver took control of the game. Dallas never challenged the Broncos, who kept the ball for more than 40 minutes. It was a humbling experience for an offense that wants to be considered among the best in the NFL.
Well said, Jerry.
Dallas not only losing to the Broncos but losing the way it did was nothing short of embarrassing. It was a thorough ass kicking, the kind that historically has drawn the ire of owner Jerry Jones.
After the game, Jones didn’t waste anytime reacting to the loss but he didn’t have the type of fire-and-brimstone response fans might have been feeling.
Jerry Jones had a perfect reaction to Cowboys loss to Broncos
“I thought they had a good plan against Dak and executed it well. We needed some plays to happen. Certainly it’s inexplicable,” Jones said to reporters after the loss. “They played an outstanding football game against what we think is a good football team, and that’s the Dallas Cowboys.”
Blogging The Boys Podcast Network and YouTube Channel
We offer a different show every single day on the Blogging The Boys podcast network.
- Monday: CowboysCast with Bobby Belt
- Tuesday: The 75O with Tony Casillas and RJ Ochoa
- Wednesday: The NFC East Mixtape with RJ Ochoa and Brandon Gowton
- Wednesday: Talkin’ The Draft with Connor Livesay, Cole Patterson, and Dalton Miller
- Thursday: Ryled Up with Roy White and Tom Ryle
- Friday: Girls Talkin ‘Boys with Kelsey Charles and Meg Murray
- Saturday: Cowboys Hoy with Mauricio Rodriguez
- Sunday: Jersey Boyz with Dave Sturchio, Bret Ernst, and Keith Ernst
We also offer daily episodes of Dallas Cowboys Roundup where we give you that day’s latest headlines so that you always stay caught up. Consider it an audio version of the links, and every episode is 10 minutes or less so you can catch up in a hurry.
The Blogging The Boys podcast network is available on all major podcast platforms.
Make sure to subscribe, rate the feed, and leave a review! Our latest episode is available in the feed down below.