Dallas Cowboys who earned their Star against the Niners
Joe Thomas, Linebacker
Although many were anxious to watch 2018 first round pick Leighton Vander Esch make his preseason debut, it was another linebacker that stole the show. That player being former Green Bay Packer Joe Thomas.
The fourth-year veteran led the Cowboys with five combined tackles and recorded an interception off a tipped ball by safety Kavon Frazier. No. 48 was all over the field on Thursday night and proved the Cowboys have a very talented linebacker corps beyond their starters this year.
Darius Jackson, Running back
Former sixth rounder Darius Jackson made his famous return to the Cowboys this offseason after spending an injury-plagued year with the Cleveland Browns. But coming off a serious knee injury, no one quite knew what to expect from Jackson.
But against the Niners on Thursday night, Jackson was able to string together three successful plays back-to-back-to-back. The 24-year old running back ended the third quarter with a five-yard run, a 14-yard pass and a 13-yard scamper for a total of two first downs in three snaps. It was an impressive showing for a running back trying to separate himself from the pack.
DeMarcus Lawrence, Defensive end
Although DeMarcus Lawrence only recorded a single tackle on the stat sheet, his pass rush ability against the Niners’ starting offense was eye-popping. Already playing in midseason form, Lawrence came screaming off the edge and was in 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo‘s face plenty of times in their opening series. It appears his 14.5 sack season in 2017 was no fluke.
Cooper Rush, Quarterback
After a bit of a slow start, backup quarterback Cooper Rush seemed to settle down and played well. Coming off a near perfect preseason last year where he threw for 398 yards and six touchdowns, Rush started off his sophomore campaign in similar fashion.
Rush passed for 145 yards and a score completing 15 of his 23 passes. He’s clearly the favorite over fifth-round rookie quarterback Mike White as the primary backup behind starter Dak Prescott.