Dallas Cowboys and Seahawks game set up by a piece of paper

OAKLAND, CA - DECEMBER 17: The Dallas Cowboys line up against the Oakland Raiders during their NFL game at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on December 17, 2017 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Don Feria/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - DECEMBER 17: The Dallas Cowboys line up against the Oakland Raiders during their NFL game at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on December 17, 2017 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Don Feria/Getty Images) /

Wow, the Dallas Cowboys defeat the Raiders and move on to face the Seahawks all because of a piece of paper. I write. You read. Let’s discuss!

Man, seriously, just when you thought you saw everything. If the NFL needed a good primetime game to boost ratings, the Dallas Cowboys and Oakland Raiders match was it. Boy, the spicy drama didn’t disappoint.

Now, thanks to an index card, and a series of gutsy calls by the Cowboys, America’s Team moves forward. Let’s discuss.

The Cowboys carry on, thanks to that infamous piece of paper

You know, sometimes I think the Dallas Cowboys and NFL referee Gene Steratore combine forces to pluck at NFL hearts. First, you had the famous “Dez caught it” episode back in 2014, where Bryant leapt, caught and juggled the football at Lambeau Field.

Now, you have Mr. Steratore planting an index card to reaffirm a first down for the Cowboys, which led to a game-winning field goal by Dan Bailey.

Cowboys. Steratore. Drama.

Boy, it does feel good to be on the other side of the call, doesn’t it?

The Raiders fall, thanks to that infamous piece of paper

Obviously, both teams would have liked to have played a cleaner, messy-free type game. But one of the two teams, both historic in their own right, had to lose.

The cardiac Cowboys know a thing or two about losing close ones. Quarterback Derek Carr ran, extended, and then of course, fumbled. What a terrible, terrible way to end a season.

The blame and brave

You can blame the foul on cornerback Jourdan Lewis. You can blame Anthony Brown for not pouncing on the ball to end the drive, essentially ending the game.

There is plenty of blame to spread around here and there on the Raiders’ final drive, but Jeff Heath applied Rod Marinelli’s high motor attitude, and it paid off.

Heath contested Derek Carr, making him re-adjust his trajectory to the end zone, which led to the fumble. Ballgame.

A game of plays

Last week, there were many who criticized the Cowboys. For not killing a weakened New York Giants team. For not killing a depleted Washington Redskins a week before that.

Yes, the Cowboys needed a few big plays in the fourth period to knock out a wounded Giants team last week. If there is anything to learn from in the Raiders match up, it’s that football games can truly be decided by inches or a handful of plays.

Or, in this instance, an index card.

Sure, the 2017 Dallas Cowboys team is some sort of shell of their 2016 team. I’ll give into that.

But don’t discount a fighting team with their backs against the wall. The Cowboys faked a punt, launched a high ball to Dez Bryant, provided awesome secondary play (minus the Jourdan Lewis foul), and capitalized on a very unusual first down via a Dak Prescott QB sneak.

You see, every play counts, so don’t discount an entire team because they spiraled out for three-quarters of a game.

How many times do we say this? We just need one big play to win this one…

The rookie boy

I can’t praise Chidobe Awuzie enough. To get this message across, I’ll write about him every single week if I have to.

The message is this: This rookie is the most important player to come out of the 2017 NFL Draft for the Cowboys, and depending on his ceiling, he might be the single most important draft pick on the defense in the last five years.

In his last three starts, the cornerback out of Colorado has 11 tackles and six pass deflections. Yes, he is still raw. Yes, he is still learning.

But his raw ability and feistiness is palpable. One guy, in my eyes, has made the defense stronger, smarter and overall, more symmetrical.

Chidobe. Awuzie.

Practice saying that over and over, my friend.

The Hawks. The Boys. OMG.

And, here we go!

Cowboys. Seahawks. Guess who is coming back to eat? Ah, yes… he’s bacckkkkkkk!

All the Cowboys wanted for Christmas was to play a meaningful game with Ezekiel Elliott following his six-game suspension.

Not only did the Cowboys pave a meaningful path for Elliott’s return, but the running back has a real reason to, in fact, run.

Images of Elliott in beast mode circling the media should not come as a surprise. The back is hungry, angry, and just simply wants to eat. Preferably, in the playoffs, of course.

Poor Seattle. No, really. After getting lit up by their division rival, the Los Angeles Rams, it seems the Seahawks have more to lose this Sunday than the Cowboys.

Of course, both teams are jockeying for playoff positioning. But the Cowboys offense is getting a huge jolt with number 21 back.

In eight games this season, Zeke has 783 rushing yards on 191 carries. He is averaging 4.1 yards per carry, and has seven touchdowns. He also has 19 catches along with two scores.

Next: Ranking every top-10 pick in Dallas Cowboys’ history

The last time he touched a football was on November 11th, against the Kansas City Chiefs. So, fatigue won’t be an issue, considering the man is coming off a six-week vacation.

Hey, I guess it pays to head to Mexico during the football year. Though, it’s probably best to stay away from those boat rides, eh?