The Dallas Cowboys
survived a whole bunch of chaos won on Saturday night. They are now 11-5 on the season and have a chance at not only winning the NFC East but taking the #2 seed in the NFC playoff picture as a whole.
But all of that holds true because of what happened on Saturday night at AT&T Stadium. The Cowboys finished a regular season unbeaten in their home building for the first time since 1981 which is certainly something to be proud of, but the final regular season dub felt a lot more difficult than it had to be.
As we always do, we have assessed what went down for the Cowboys through the prism of our stock report. It was a night that featured Jimmy Johnson going into the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor and a win by the home team. So all in all a good night’s work!
Stock Up: CeeDee Lamb
From a statistical standpoint, it is difficult to argue that CeeDee Lamb has officially had the greatest season that any Dallas Cowboys wide receiver ever has. Saturday night saw Lamb set franchise records in both receptions and receiving yardage as far as single-season performances are concerned, and that he did them in 16 games removes any “but” that could have followed him if he took the 17th game that the NFL instituted beginning with the 2021 regular season.
It was Lamb’s first 200-yard game of his career and 92 of them came on a single play that he took into the endzone. He is one of the most dynamic wide receiver in the NFL and that seems like we are underselling him. He is one of one.
Stock Up: DeMarcus Lawrence
Obviously there is one Cowboys defender that exists in his own universe of sorts, but if it were not for him DeMarcus Lawrence would get the title of best player on that side of the ball right now.
Lawrence was incredible during the loss in Miami and followed it up with an all-over-the-place performance against the Lions. He truly powered the defensive performance and was a constant disruptor in the run game. Since the Cowboys got worked on the ground by the Bills they, and Lawrence specifically, have really buttoned things up.
Stock Up: Micah Parsons
While both teams playing on Saturday night had already clinched playoff berths it was still a massive game in terms of seeding ramifications. In big games like that your superstars have to show up and Micah Parsons certainly did.
While Parsons still did not draw a holding penalty, he did show up in the run game along with Tank Lawrence. Parsons was constantly blowing through the line of scrimmage and wreaking havoc that messed with what Detroit was trying to get going on offense.
Stock Up: Jourdan Lewis
In the middle of last season Jourdan Lewis intercepted a pass against the Detroit Lions and in the same game suffered an injury that ended his 2022 campaign. It was horrible. A Michigan native and Michigan Wolverine to boot, this game took Lewis full circle in that he picked off the Lions yet again and served as a huge defensive catalyst against Detroit with his tackling.
Sometimes sports and life can take you full circle like that and it was neat to see Lewis have his moment. While we are on Detroit sports, all of this happened on the night that the Pistons broke their losing streak! What are the chances?!
Stock Up: Donovan Wilson
Ever the enforcer on defense, Wilson showed up and showed out. While he should have had an interception earlier in the game as well, it was Wilson who did intercept what should have been the game-clinching pick. In a moment where someone needed to take control he did just that and deserves his props.
Stock Up: Dorance Armstrong
We are at the point in the season where notable players beyond the superstars have to step up and clearly Dorance Armstrong got the message. He set the tone early in the trenches and let Jared Goff know it was going to be a long night.
Stock Up: Dante Fowler
Similar to Armstrong, Dante Fowler was clearly on a mission on Saturday night. He was thriving in the chaos of battle and was seemingly always in the mix. Again, role players had to step up and Fowler made sure to do his part.
Stock Up: Brandon Aubrey
He has made 35 consecutive field goals to start his career. What on earth.
Seriously though, this is beyond any level of impressiveness that we could have previously measured. He is a gift. A weapon. A power. The final infinity stone. The bag of jewels Indiana Jones swapped out the rock for.
All hail Brandon Aubrey.
Stock Up: Brandin Cooks
On the subject of Brandons though, Brandin Cooks has kind of been everything that we wanted.
Saturday night he scored a fourth quarter touchdown to give the Cowboys the lead again (thankfully they held on to this one, granted in a dramatic way) but ultimately he was most impressive with his overall performance throughout the game.
We said all offseason how CeeDee Lamb needed a proper running-mate and on a night where Lamb literally set career highs there were still moments where somebody else had to step up and Brandin Cooks absolutely did that. His presence completely changes the offense’s potential.
Stock Up: Jimmy Johnson
How could we not give Jimmy a stock up? The ceremony was perfect.
To see Jimmy greeted by his Triplets, Woody, Charles Haley and all of the Cowboys greats who preceded the 90s dynasty, and also decorate the Ring of Honor and Hall of Fame was our collective dream come to life. I am grateful that we all got to witness it.
Stock Down: Tony Pollard
Everything just feels so tough and difficult in the run game. While the run blocking is hardly doing him any favors, Pollard, at one point, got open in the middle of the field and dropped a pass that hit him right in the hands. The regression is real and troublesome with the postseason a fortnight away.
Stock Down: Jake Ferguson
Saturday simply was not his night. We expect great things and tough catches because we have seen them from him, but he did not deliver. That is okay. It happens. He’ll bounce back.
Stock Down: Mike McCarthy
You could also lump Dan Quinn in here for going with soft coverage at the end of this game, but other than that the defense more than did their job.
Offensively though, the Cowboys offense needed to be carried for the second straight week. That is on Mike McCarthy.
Also, the Cowboys threw on their final possession of the game while up four points and in field goal range and stopped the clock for the Lions in a sequence that proved to be essential to the comeback that Detroit damn near pulled off. That is on McCarthy.
I was more forgiving of how McCarthy handled the end of the Seattle game (which was similar to this) than most, but what he did at the end of this game was indefensible. Dallas arguably should have lost this game because of the wild conversion chaos and had that literally been the case then it would have been directly Mike McCarthy’s fault for giving life to the opportunity in the first place.
These things can not happen. Not now. Not in the playoffs. Not ever.