When the Monstars and Michael Jordan are making their wager in the original Space Jam the aliens threaten His Airness with an eternal trap. Should MJ lose the basketball game that they are setting up, then he will have to serve as a piece of entertainment on the Monstars’ home planet. A graphic is shown of Jordan playing basketball against a little kid and limited by a chain so that the kid can win. If he and the Toon Squad go on to lose (thankfully they don’t), he will spend all of time losing over and over and over again to would-be adversaries.
At some point the Dallas Cowboys became Michael Jordan in their relationship with the Monstars that are the Green Bay Packers. For some reason, we are all stuck on this endless loop where the Cowboys lift up our hopes, play well enough to win, hand the ball back to Aaron Rodgers, and are left to lick their wounds. Why? Why does this keep happening?
We discussed everything from Sunday’s game on the latest episode of The Postgame on the Blogging The Boys podcast network. Make sure to subscribe to our network so you don’t miss any of our shows! Apple devices can subscribe here and Spotify users can subscribe here.
The Cowboys were up by 14 points when the fourth quarter started and somehow lost. That this happened in general is maddening, that they breathed life into the Packers and their season makes it more frustrating, and that they lacked the necessary killer instinct to set up a happy flight home is unnerving.
As always, we have assembled our stock report in the aftermath of Sunday’s action. It was a unique exercise given that there were a lot of things to be happy about but that they were drowned out by the sorrow and misery that unfolded after the sun had gone down.
HOW DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING.
Stock Up: DeMarcus Lawrence
It really is a shame that the Cowboys lost this game because they squandered one of the finest performances from DeMarcus Lawrence this season.
Tank was all over the place stopping the run (he was about the only one) and had an important sack where he stripped Aaron Rodgers of the ball. Any points that can be generated off of turnovers is a great thing, but unfortunately the Cowboys turned the ball over themselves shortly after by way of a Dak Prescott interception.
Kudos to D-Law, though.
Stock Up: Dalton Schultz
Was this the best game that Dalton Schultz has played all season? While he “only” had 54 yards receiving he did catch a touchdown for the first time this season. It has just been that kind of year.
We have seen the Cowboys get a lot of production out of the tight end position as a whole but it was nice to see Schultz return to his usual dependability.
Stock Up: Sam Williams
While the Cowboys defense was disappointing, and has been for two games in a row now, the arrow is pointing very up on rookie Sam Williams.
It is incredibly early but it certainly seems like Dallas has found something special in their second-rounder. Any time you can register a sack it is a good thing but roping up Aaron Rodgers adds another level.
Stock Up: Luke Gifford
Special teams are an important part of the game and Luke Gifford had a tremendous day on that side of the ball. It feels like the special teams prowess of this team has really flown under the radar all season long and players like Gifford deserve a lot of credit.
Stock Up: Malik Davis
The Cowboys chose to leave Ezekiel Elliott as inactive as he recovers from a knee injury at Lambeau Field as they are clearly considering the marathon of the season, and not just trying to sprint to the finish. It was the second game in a row that Elliott was inactive which meant that Tony Pollard was called upon more often, but so was Malik Davis.
It has been a long time since we got to see a new face get regular touches in the Cowboys backfield and while Davis only got a few opportunities two weeks ago against the Chicago Bears, he got a few more and did a lot with them in Green Bay. All told Davis had five carries for 38 yards (7.6 YPC) and even had a 16-yard run in overtime that was called back due to penalty. Good for him.
Stock Down: Dak Prescott
While we can try to explain away the turnovers at the end of the day we have to see and demand more from Dak Prescott. This game was mostly lost by the defense but Dak and Co. had an opportunity to end it in regulation.
Green Bay tied the game with two and a half minutes left which was shocking given that Dallas began the final period up by 14 but still, the ball was in their hands and they could put things away if they were able to. But they weren’t.
On that critical possession the Cowboys went three and out before punting the ball back to the Packers. Again, Dak had some fine moments on Sunday afternoon, but they have to happen more frequently. The defense has carried this team many times this season and this was an opportunity for the offense to return the favor and they were not able to.
Stock Down: Anthony Brown and/or Kelvin Joseph
Anthony Brown was struggling a bit in this game before getting injured, but it is not like Kelvin Joseph did much better. The Cowboys have an issue opposite of Trevon Diggs.
Stock Down: Jalen Tolbert
How do you get called for being offside? As a wide receiver? On offense in general? To make matters worse, Tolbert did not exactly own up to his mistake after the game.
After offside penalty, Cowboys WR Jalen Tolbert told Mike McCarthy he checked with judge, just as WRs do throughout a game. And it still was called. “Disappointing” for ruling to be made at that time, McCarthy said. Disappointed for his players. Felt they deserved to win. https://t.co/nsJ6TK8zbu— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) November 14, 2022
In no way am I trying to put words in Tolbert’s mouth, but he is effectively saying that the officials essentially baited him into a penalty if we are to believe his side of the story. Why would an official, any official, give him the green light on where he was lined up (which was very clearly offside) only for the crew to penalize him for it?
Stock Down: Dan Quinn
At some point over the last year Dan Quinn entered the sacred territory that few members of the Cowboys are fortunate to be, where he is infallible in general and immune to criticism.
Quinn has earned his flowers and deserves all of the praise that he has gotten around here, but this defense has been run all over two games in a row now and was specifically dominated on Sunday afternoon while blowing a 14-point lead. What is going on?
Micah Parsons does not seem to be healthy but Dan Quinn is heralded as the savior of this defense and someone who can fix any part of it. There is no excuse for getting dominated by what was one of the worst offenses in the NFL when Sunday’s game kicked off.
Stock Down: Mike McCarthy
The buck ultimately stops with Mike McCarthy and at the end of the day his team was not prepared for the Green Bay Packers which is really frustrating.
Green Bay had lost five in a row. Dallas was coming off of their bye. This game was an opportunity for Dallas to exorcise their demons, for McCarthy to get some sweet vindication, and for the team to punish someone who has bothered them for an almost-decade. But they couldn’t.
You have to be willing to end a team. Dallas isn’t there yet.