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Cowboys at Buccaneers Stock Report: Dak Prescott leads masterclass performance

The Dallas Cowboys completely showed up on Monday night.

NFL: NFC Wild Card Round-Dallas Cowboys at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys wore their jinxed navy jerseys on the road to play a playoff game against the greatest player of all time in Tom Brady on Monday night and you know what happened? They absolutely dominated him.

We can nitpick little things and talk about legitimate room for improvement. We are all certainly unanimous in the emotions of not being satisfied and wanting this ride to march on all the way through. We share in all of these things because we shared in all of the road playoff losses over the last 30 years, Tony Romo bobbling it in Seattle, Dez Bryant catching it in Green Bay, and all of the other things that our scars tell the story of.

We discussed everything from Monday night’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 Dallas Cowboys did not win the Super Bowl on Monday night but they took a sizable step forward towards literally doing that. Yes. Really. The Cowboys are as close to winning it all since they have been over the last 27 years, and while nobody wants to hang a banner for that, it is a reality worth getting excited about.

We will spend appropriate time looking forward to the San Francisco 49ers and the monumental task that lies ahead for the Cowboys, but today we are relishing in the fact that the greatest player to ever play this game was zapped of all of his mighty powers at the hands of the team that we know and love.

It is time for this week’s Dallas Cowboys Stock Report and it sure is a fun one to live through.

Stock Up: Dak Prescott

There were many people who demanded Dak Prescott’s finest hour on Monday night, and even though that is a tall order, he served it up on time and at perfect temperature. Simply put, Dak Prescott was perfect against the Buccaneers. He finished the game with over 300 yards passing and five total touchdowns, but somehow those numbers don’t feel like they do his performance justice.

Prescott was in complete and total control of this game. To quote the great Bob Sturm, he was the thermostat and not the thermometer. It was as fine a statistical performance as any Cowboys quarterback has ever had in a playoff game and it was a work of art.

Stock Up: Mike McCarthy

We have talked endlessly about the accolades McCarthy has achieved over the last two years and noted all of the records and curses and whatevers that he has powered through. Mike McCarthy was hired to take the Cowboys places where they have not been before, and just because they are “only” at the Divisional Round right now, does not mean that this is not true. McCarthy did not let history or ghosts rule the day for the Cowboys. He marched forward.

Stock Up: Kellen Moore

Is Kellen Moore perfect? No. Did Kellen Moore oversee the best offense in the NFL when Dak Prescott was under center this season? Yes.

We saw Moore unload against the Buccaneers, and while some of it was forced by the Brett Maher situation (more on that in a bit), the reality is that he executed over and over and over. We saw motion with CeeDee Lamb. We saw Tony Pollard hit his prime 15 carry number. We saw Dalton Schultz and Michael Gallup involved throughout the night. It was wonderful.

Stock Up: Dalton Schultz

In the lead up to the playoffs starting many people noted that a Michael Gallup resurgence would be a welcome thing (duh). Well how about a Dalton Schultz resurgence?

Over the last three weeks Dalton Schultz has caught multiple touchdowns twice and on Monday night he hit a career-high 95 receiving yards. When CeeDee Lamb is drawing everything by himself, somebody else has to step up and win, and on Monday night Schultz made sure that this definitely happened.

Oh and no big deal, but he became the first tight end in Dallas Cowboys franchise history to have two touchdowns in a playoff game.

Stock Up: Tyron Smith

Not that there is an enormous sample size, but Monday night was Tyron Smith’s best game at right tackle this season for the Cowboys. Smith flipping over has been a wild adventure to say the least, but Monday night was proof of concept for the idea.

Stock Up: The Cowboys Receivers

This is cheating a bit but CeeDee Lamb, Michael Gallup, and T.Y. Hilton all deserve love for answering the call against Tampa Bay. Between the three of them they had nine receptions for 133 yards and two touchdowns. As noted, Prescott was phenomenal, but he can’t throw and catch the ball. The entire group stepped up when they were all needed.

Stock Up: Micah Parsons

Entering last week Micah Parsons spoke like he was going to show up in the way that we have grown accustomed to and he absolutely delivered. Parsons was relentless and never let Tom Brady get comfortable. It certainly helped that everyone else around him played up as well, but Parsons is the thermostat of the defensive side of the ball.

Stock Up: Leighton Vander Esch

While Parsons may set the temperature, it is Leighton Vander Esch who organizes all of the troops. It was wonderful to see him back in the middle of the defense. LVE played maybe his best game in coverage as a member of the Cowboys on Monday. Welcome back, Wolf Hunter.

Stock Up: The Cowboys Secondary

Again, cheating a bit here, but we spent much of last week worried about how Chris Godwin was going to ruin the game for the Cowboys thanks to Trevon Diggs shadowing Mike Evans. While Diggs did not run with Evans the entire game, the reality is that the Cowboys secondary did their part. It is obviously helpful to have a pass rush that is stifling the quarterback, but the back end more than held up their side of the bargain.

Stock Down: Brett Maher

This is obvious and does not need a massive deep dive. Brett Maher was awful and it is the most to-the-point statement to say that there cannot be a performance like that ever again. He has been so great this season and it is fair for the Cowboys to trust that he is still that player, but this game was terrible in every conceivable way for him.

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