Man… if you’re anything like me, then you really needed that Sunday night.
I was gifted the opportunity to attend my first Cowboys game in many years the other night. God bless my mother who decided she wanted to go a game on her birthday- and no less it was the home opener against a division rival, and I would get to see with my own eyes the likes of Odell Beckham and Saquon Barkley in what I was sure to be a close game against two teams ready to show out after an 0-1 start.
I was pretty nervous about the game going in, because (it would seem that) I severely overrated this Giants squad this season. New York has not had a consistent running game in recent memory, and I really believed that the additions of Nate Solder and Will Hernandez to their blocking corps along with the best running back in the draft would elevate their offense to new heights. Shows what I know, right? The Giants’ entire offense went through Saquon, and although he posted 108 all-purpose yards, it was on 25 attempts and he did not find the endzone at all. Eli and Odell were held to virtually nothing until the game was all but decided.
Dak and the offense give us some hope for the future
My biggest worry heading to Arlington Sunday night was imagining a loss similar to week 1 in which this new, retooled offense was once again made to look foolish against a team that was surely beatable. If that were to have happened in front of a sold-out home crowd of 80,000, it wouldn’t be a stretch to believe that someone in that organization might have been leaving AT&T that night without a job.
So perhaps the Cowboys’ newfound offensive production came as a product of job security. If that is the case, then surely somebody needs to be lighting a fire underneath our offensive coaching staff more often. However, we did see much more creativity coming out of the playbook, and a little bit of college Dak hit the gas pedal in the option. We also saw a Dak that was not afraid to put the ball downfield. It awarded us with a Tavon Austin touchdown three plays into the game and was another unexpected punch in the mouth to the G-men that they were not expecting. But all of this only really amounted to a small glimpse of what this offense could do. Were they to put this much creative effort into their play calling for four whole quarters and find some consistency in their usage of Elliott, then the sky would be the limit for this Dallas squad. Zeke was once again held below 100 yards, but still found the endzone once and a few open holes for yardage. His carries did not much increase from Week 1 but given the current issues up front, it’s hard to ask for much more than that was given from Elliott.
Once again, the Cowboys defense shows up to play
Did anybody else have a feel-good moment when Jaylon Smith landed that monster hit on Eli?
We are going to have to give Eli and the Giants some benefit of the doubt, because I don’t think that anybody outside of the Cowboys’ locker room was prepared for Dallas’ defense to be this good. The Giants certainly weren’t and despite their win last week, neither was Carolina. But the defense put on a show to the tune of six sacks and a fumble recovery deep in New York territory last night (which only yielded a field goal…) and dominated the entire game. And with Randy Gregory and David Irving due to cycle back into the starting lineup, they will only be getting better. Don’t expect the unit’s winning ways to slow up any when they head to Seattle next week, who has at least as many issues on their offensive line as New York does.
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