In a recent Q&A, Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith was asked to comment on the current state of the Dallas Cowboys. In case you don’t know the legend, Smith played for Dallas for 13 years from 1990 to 2002 and still is the NFL’s all-time leading rusher. The former running back is an 8x Pro Bowler, 4x first-team All-Pro, 3x Super Bowl Champ, a Super Bowl MVP, and so much more. He is truly one of the greatest to ever play in the league.
However, since his departure from the Cowboys, his former franchise has yet to have the same success it had in the late 1990s. The last time America’s Team won a Super Bowl (26 years ago), Smith was still on the roster. Over the past couple of months, we have shared a plethora of Cowboys legends’ opinions on the struggle the team has had. Names like Michael Irvin and Troy Aikman have expressed their confusion and frustration at the team’s inability to find success in the playoffs.
Smith was asked his opinion just a few days ago. He started by joking that the first reason the team hasn’t won is that players like him, Aikman, and Irvin aren’t on the roster. The Hall of Famer continued to say the issue isn’t talent, it’s execution.
"“It’s never been a talent thing with the Dallas Cowboys. It’s always been an execution thing — execution from the standpoint of making the plays when you need to and not beating yourself. And I think our Dallas Cowboys — we keep beating ourselves. And sometimes, we have the tendency to take things for granted because we’re so talented. When you’re talented, you think your talent can overcome a lot of different things. But the game of football is more than just talent.”"
Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith said the Dallas Cowboys’ problem is execution rather than talent and admits it’s hard to watch the team fail
Smith also added that, in his opinion, the game of football is 10% talent and 90% mental. In that regard, he doesn’t think the recent players in the franchise have grasped the concept of the mental focus and mental sustainability it takes to get to the Super Bowl.
The former Cowboys RB also admitted that it’s been frustrating to watch the team struggle. He felt there was so much momentum and great play in the first few games of the 2021 season, and then it all suddenly fizzled out. The penalties and critical mistakes took Dallas out of games and gave their opponents the opportunity to claw their way back in.
Aside from the mental game and capitalizing on momentum, the Super Bowl champ also touched on the blocking issues from running backs and tight ends. He felt Ezekiel Elliott, Tony Pollard, and Dalton Schultz needed to be better at blocking and “sealing the edge.” Overall, it seemed the Hall of Famer was quick to come up with many faults about the 2021 Cowboys team. Maybe Mike McCarthy and Jerry Jones need to bring Smith in to get some ideas? He’s clearly seeing things that people in that organization aren’t.
Apparently, there will be a second part of the interview coming out in the near future.