Playoff opponents two years in a row... something is brewing.
FRISCO, TX — There’s a lot to be said for the value of catharsis, in both life and in sports, and the Dallas Cowboys have a chance to earn a wheelbarrow full of it this postseason. It began with finally exorcising one of their demons on NFL Super Wild Card Weekend, defeating Tom Brady (and in the postseason, no less), and next comes the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Divisional Round.
It’s the team that walked into AT&T Stadium last January and knocked the Cowboys out of the playoffs so, needless to say, it’s been a thorn in the side of players like Micah Parsons, Dak Prescott, CeeDee Lamb and other players — coaches alike — who felt the sting of the loss.
“It sucked,” Lamb admitted on Thursday, who caught only one pass in the loss and is himself looking to have a much different outing in San Francisco to wash that taste from his mouth.
History — Cowboys are the kings of it.
SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — For Kyle Shanahan, the chance to coach the San Francisco 49ers against the Dallas Cowboys in a playoff game is a throwback to when that rivalry was the biggest in football.
Shanahan’s formative years were spent watching his father, Mike, as offensive coordinator in San Francisco battling the Cowboys in three straight NFC title games.
After the rivalry went dormant for more than a quarter-century as the proud franchises rarely enjoyed success at the same time, it is having a rebirth with San Francisco set to take on Dallas for the second straight postseason when they meet Sunday in the divisional round.
“That’s how rivalries happen,” Shanahan said Wednesday. “You guys knew it from the ’80s when it started out. I remember so much from my childhood from sixth grade to ninth grade, because I was here ’92 to ’94, so it was the biggest rivalry in football to me growing up. Then usually that goes away when you don’t meet in the playoffs a bunch and we had a big game last year, we have a big game this year, so the more you do that, the bigger it gets again.”
Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy says kicker Brett Maher ‘needs to practice well this week’ - NFL.com, Eric Edholm
McCarthy isn't so soon forgetting those four missed extra points.
“It doesn’t take anything away from our trust in Brett,” McCarthy told reporters on Thursday. “I just think it’s part of the responsibility. Player acquisition’s a 365-day [thing], this is nothing out of the normal for us.
“I think the fact that we’ll have a chance to watch Tristan, I’m looking forward to seeing him work today. I think he’s a talented young kicker. I just think we want to make sure that we’re always in position to always add depth to our football team.”
No disrespect coming from the rookie.
SANTA CLARA — On Sunday, Brock Purdy will face the best pass rush he’s faced in his career — the Dallas Cowboys, who led the NFL in pressures this season.
Here’s what the 49ers rookie quarterback said Thursday about the upcoming matchup.
Q: When you look at the Cowboys defense, particularly their defensive front, what kind of pops out at you?
PURDY: “Yeah, I feel like they’re just talented across the board, up front. I think they’re well coached, you can tell with their scheme and everything that they do, there’s definitely a plan that they have and they go at it and all five of their guys, four of their guys, whoever’s on the field, they pay attention to detail in the pass rush, which I feel like is a good challenge for us. I feel like we’ve played a handful of teams that, do a good job and are well coached up front, but these guys are probably one of the best at it and it will be one of the best challenges that we’ve seen.”
NFL cracking down after Cowboys, Eagles, other teams caught violating this obscure rule - CBS Sports, John Breech
This is interesting.
The NFL has decided to start cracking down and enforcing a little known rule that several teams have been breaking this year, including the Dallas Cowboys, who broke the rule during their 31-14 wild-card playoff win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday night.
The league has asked officials to start watching holders more closely to make sure they’re not using any illegal foreign objects, according to Football Zebras. The rule that teams have been violating is 11-4-5, which states that”No article of any type may be placed on the field, or used in any manner, to assist a player in the execution of a field goal and/or [extra point] attempt.”
Cowboys holder Bryan Anger usually grabs a blade of grass and puts it down in front of him so he knows exactly where to put the football down when he’s holding, but even that’s illegal and the officiating crew let him know during Dallas’ win on Monday.
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