The Cowboys accomplished their mission - beating the Commanders - and were rewarded with an NFC East title. They won big too, with a 38-10 score to give Dallas the second-best point differential in the NFL for the season.
They did that with a few standout performances from their standout players. Here are the highest graded players from the game, according to Pro Football Focus.
Offense puts up a strong performance on the road
The Cowboys’ struggles on the road have been well-documented this year, and much of that has revolved around the offense. That wasn’t the case at all against the Commanders, though, as Dallas put up 440 total yards of offense and averaged 6.4 yards per play.
WR CeeDee Lamb - 86.0
CeeDee Lamb had a great finish to the best year of his career. He caught all 13 of his targets for 98 yards and two touchdowns, doing just about whatever he wanted against the Commanders secondary. Seven of his receptions went for a first down, and 41 of his yards came after the catch.
RB Tony Pollard - 80.7
Tony Pollard hit the 1,000 yard mark in this game, which is good enough on its own, but Pollard had one of his best games of the year too. He totaled 70 rushing yards on 17 carries with a touchdown, providing several very good runs. It’s just the latest in a string of games where Pollard has looked like his former self.
Since Week 9, Tony Pollard ranked 3rd in PFF rushing grade, 5th in yards after contact and 3rd in missed tackles forced.— John Owning (@JohnOwning) January 8, 2024
TP playing his best ball when it matters most. #Cowboys
TE Jake Ferguson - 80.6
CeeDee Lamb wasn’t the only Cowboy with a perfect catch percentage in this game. Jake Ferguson was targeted six times and caught all six of them for 69 yards. His 44 yards after the catch was crucial in moving the chains, which he did on all but one of his receptions.
QB Dak Prescott - 80.4
It’s crazy to think that Dak Prescott only comes in fourth on offense in player grade, but it also speaks volumes about the performance of the three guys ahead of him. Prescott completed a ridiculous 86.5% of his passes for 282 yards with four touchdowns. While he did throw an interception, Prescott finished the day with zero turnover worthy plays, a reflection of how the tipped pass turned pick wasn’t his fault.
Defense recovers from sluggish start to dominate
Things started out poorly for the Dallas defense, as they got beat repeatedly on the Commanders’ opening drive before making a stop on fourth down. Then, they gave up a touchdown on a short field. But from that point on, this defense put a foot in the ground and dominated, with 10 different players recording a player grade above 75.0 for the game.
CB DaRon Bland - 91.1
What a way for DaRon Bland to cap his 2023 regular season. As has been the case lately, Bland wasn’t thrown at much, with just three targets all night. That was all it took, though, and Bland came up with an interception on a deep shot late in the game. It marked his league-leading ninth interception of the year, a great end to a great season.
S Donovan Wilson - 89.9
Donovan Wilson has been on a heater lately, with his three best player grades of the season coming in the last five weeks. He was great against Washington, tallying five tackles and a pass breakup in addition to a pretty impressive interception.
EDGE DeMarcus Lawrence - 85.3
DeMarcus Lawrence turned in a classic performance on Sunday, not dominating in any one area but playing stout defense in every facet. He had a pressure, a hit, a batted pass, and two run stops on the day, once again showcasing his all-around talent.
CB Jourdan Lewis - 83.1
Much like Donovan Wilson, Jourdan Lewis is hitting his stride at the perfect time. After being picked on for most of the year, Lewis has clamped down in coverage while his physicality in the run game has returned. His signature play on Sunday saw Lewis rip the ball out of the running back’s hands and then recover it right away for an impact takeaway.
EDGE Micah Parsons - 83.0
Crazy but true: Micah Parsons had the lowest pass rush grade on the team in this game. His 55.2 score was also the lowest pass rush grade Parsons has had all year long. He registered exactly one pressure on the day, but it did result in a sack. Where Parsons made his impact, though, was in the run game: he had one run stop and graded out as the third best run defender in the game. That’s a positive step for Parsons after some struggles in run support earlier in the year.