The Dallas Cowboys faced their biggest matchup of the season. Against arguably the top team in the AFC, the Cowboys played their best game of the season. Despite some miscues at the end of the first half, the team played outstanding football for a good part of the contest. Dallas’ defense continues their resurgence, led by David Irving, Sean Lee and Demarcus Lawrence, who all had impressive performances. On offense, the team received contributions from unlikely players, which helped carry the team. Here’s a quick breakdown of the action:
David Irving is the Real Deal:
Although Demarcus Lawrence has had the better counting stats on the year, David Irving has been just as dominant in fewer games played. His presence along the defensive line creates problems for opposing QBs, as it did to Alex Smith. Irving recorded a key sack on Smith late in the contest, and used his long arms to deflect a Smith pass. His play has inspired this defensive line, as they are turning heads as a unit. Even the much-maligned Taco Charlton, the team’s first-round draft pick, got in on the fun. Charlton recorded a critical sack on third-down with 6 minutes left which ended the Kansas City comeback bid. With Lawrence and Irving in the fold, the rest of this defensive line will be in position to feast on opposing quarterbacks the rest of the season.
Offense Breaks Out, Injury Bug Bites:
The Dallas Cowboys looked to be in position to feed Dez Bryant the ball in the passing game against Kansas City. They did just that, as Bryant had double digit targets. However, Cole Beasley and Terrance Williams had their best performances of the season. Beasley secured two touchdown passes, while Williams recorded the his 1st 100-yd receiving game since 2015. Williams also was the first Cowboys’ receiver to reach the 100-yard mark since the beginning of last season. Zeke Elliott continued his impressive play, as he churned out positive gains all day.
The day wasn’t all positive, however. Bryant and Williams both left with ankle injuries in the second half. Additionally, All-Pro offensive tackle Tyron Smith left the game with a groin injury. The injuries, coupled with the cloud hanging over Zeke’s playing status, brings a lot of questions going forward. Looking ahead, the team will look for some positive news on offense ahead of a road matchup with the defending NFC Champion Atlanta Falcons.
Dallas Cowboys Move to 5-3:
At the end of the day, despite the injuries, the team grabbed a much-needed victory. At 5-3, they still have some ground to make up to catch Philadelphia in the division. However, the team remains in the thick of a crowded NFC Playoff picture. With matchups against the Falcons and Eagles in the next two weeks, the team has a chance to control their own destiny as the days grow shorter in the NFL season.
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