The Dallas Cowboys respond from the debacle last week by crushing the Cardinals, 28-17. Here are five quick notes about the game.
After a slow start in the desert, the flow of the game felt a lot like last week. The Dallas Cowboys booted the game with no rhythm, and yes, I must confess, some doubt crept in.
• This team isn’t as good as they were in 2017
• Maybe the front line isn’t who we thought they were
• The defense needs time to grow, and they’re about to get exposed on prime-time football
Of course, none of the negative thoughts needed to play out. Dallas Cowboys 28, Arizona Cardinals 17.
Here are five quick notes I jotted down about contest last night.
1. Where the Cowboys lacked in skill, they found resolve in grit
There’s no question that this Dallas Cowboys team has talent. The question is why hasn’t the team fired on all cylinders yet.
After getting blown out by the Denver Broncos last week, quarterback Dak Prescott finished the night with a 141.7 quarterback rating. He had three touchdowns (two passing, one rushing).
Though Bryant was only targeted twice all night, his lone touchdown score boosted the Cowboys and the play itself will be replayed over and this NFL year.
2. DeMarcus Lawrence leads the NFL in sacks
There’s no other way to put it: DeMarcus Lawrence is a war daddy with six and half sacks. Meanwhile, Taco Charlton had one tackle last night.
3. Jourdan Lewis is who we thought he was
Where is Dennis Green when you need him. Anyways…
Corner Lewis started the night slow, as the rest of the defense did, but learned quickly as the game progressed. He finished the night with six tackles, one of which was for a loss.
Lewis, a rookie third rounder, came in with high expectations. The cornerback wasn’t supposed to contribute this early, but his play already is turning heads, and for good reason.
Right now, the ceiling is far and there’s a whole lot of growth for number 27. Circle that guy.
4. Ezekiel Elliott runs again
He didn’t get 100 yards, but 80 will do. Zeke averaged only 3.6 yards per carry, but his strong and persistent play helped the Cowboys move the needle over the Cards.
Elliott is back, but really, did he ever leave? Everyone gets a bad game. So finally, we can move away from the “he quit” whispers already.
5. Rod Marinelli adjusts and adjusts and adjusts
Talk about changing the game plan around. Defensive coordinator Marinelli started the game slow and lethargic. It felt like the fifth quarter of the Cowboys and Broncos game for a bit there.
Though Palmer had over 300 yards, and wide receiver legend Larry Fitzgerald had 13 receptions for 149 yards, the defense stuck together and fought hard.
The Cardinals gained yards, but couldn’t gain points. And for that, the Cowboys walked out with a win by playing big in big moments.