It took Cowboys' Mike McCarthy one game to do something Kellen Moore never did

Mike McCarthy is a clear upgrade over Kellen Moore as a play-caller.

Dallas Cowboys v New York Giants
Dallas Cowboys v New York Giants / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages

The Dallas Cowboys' defense is the all the rage after they pitched a shutout on the road against the New York Giants in front of a national audience.

That's not to say Mike McCarthy's offense didn't come ready to play, of course.

With the defense tormenting Daniel Jones all night, all the offense had to do was take care of the football. At the end of the day, Dak Prescott authored some commanding drives and they finished sixth in EPA per play on offense for Week 1 before the Monday night slate.

It's only one game, but McCarthy taking over play-calling for Kellen Moore is off to a tremendous start.

While Moore dazzled in his Chargers debut, McCarthy managed to do something in one game as Dallas' play-caller that the former offensive coordinator couldn't (or refused to) in 17 games last year: get KaVontae Turpin involved on offense.

It took Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy one game to find a role for KaVontae Turpin

The Cowboys offense was just fine last season under Moore's tutelage, but fans had deserved criticisms for the now-Chargers offensive coordinator. Among them was his refusal to get the dynamic Turpin involved on offense.

It's no secret that Dallas' receiver room was an issue last year. Outside of CeeDee Lamb, Prescott didn't have a reliable target. With Michael Gallup struggling in his first season back from ACL surgery, Noah Brown finished as WR2 and T.Y. Hilton became a big factor down the stretch after he was signed in December.

The offense was literally starving for more playmakers, but Moore wouldn't budge, much to the chagrin of CeeDee Lamb.

As soon as Moore was let go, McCarthy had Turpin lining up all over the field at training camp. Sure enough, the return specialist was used in a gadget-type role Sunday night and finished with five touches (three carries, two catches) for 25 yards and a touchdown.

Not using Turpin on offense wasn't the downfall of the Cowboys' offense in 2022, but it speaks volumes about McCarthy's creativity and eye for talent that it took all of one game for Turpin to assume an offensive role.

Turpin won't see much volume week-to-week, but his presence represents another dynamic for opposing teams' to game plan for when they already have to account for Lamb, Brandin Cooks, Pollard and Gallup, among others.

That'll only make things easier for Dak Prescott. Is that not that the top priority of the individual in charge of calling plays?

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