Another year has come and gone without the Dallas Cowboys getting past the second round of the NFC Playoffs. This time, they fell to the San Francisco 49ers in a 19-12 defensive showdown.
The Cowboys are likely beating themselves up after this loss since their defense did all they could to keep them in the game, while Dak Prescott did all he could to keep them from winning it.
Now with the dust settled, let’s see who stood out as studs and duds in the loss.
Cowboys studs and duds Divisional Round
Stud: CeeDee Lamb, WR
While there was a lot to be frustrated with this year, the performance of CeeDee Lamb does not fall in that category. Lamb had a fantastic season and put it all on the line in this loss.
He finished with 117 yards on 10 receptions as he caught everything that was within his reach.
One of the biggest plays Lamb made on the night won’t stand out in the stat sheet though. On a fourth and one, Dallas went for it and Lamb got the ball on a left-end run. He was one-on-one with Talanoa Hufanga and made the All-Pro safety miss the tackle.
He ended up with a four-yard gain which kept the chains moving and the drive ended with Dalton Schultz catching his third touchdown of the postseason.
Dud: Tyler Smith, OT
It was never going to be easy going against the 49ers, who had the best defense in the NFL this season, but it became even harder when the Cowboys started to move in the wrong direction. Tyler Smith, was guilty of causing this more than once.
On the very first offensive snap for Dallas, Smith was flagged for holding, and that caused them to start with a first-and-20. He was flagged again right before the end of the first quarter, this time for a false start.
The Cowboys had just moved the chains thanks to a seven-yard reception from CeeDee Lamb but the rookie moved them back with his flag.
Smith has been great this season and once again had to kick outside to tackle when Jason Peters was hurt. Still, his main issue has been the penalties and it was again a problem on Sunday.