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Another win, but this one had a ton of talking points, and most of them happened at the end of what would normally be described as a typical 2017 Dallas Cowboys game.
It’s terrible being a fan when you can not only call the play but also predict the outcome. Morris started lively and T-Will caught a couple of passes, but then Morris wasn’t getting the yards and completions were hard to come by, other than a big gain to Hanna that is.
The game was following a familiar pattern, we take the opening kick-off (why do we persist with this strategy when it clearly isn’t working) and whoever we’re playing are still in it at half time. The Raiders hadn’t read the script and missed the chance to get on the scoreboard at the end of the 2nd quarter with a missed FG. Someone had a word with Derek Carr and reminded him that the Cowboys don’t do 3rd quarters, so he duly put 10 points on the board. From only using the same plays for a considerable length of time, Linehan discovered an old page titled ‘Trick plays’ and used all of them on one drive. This followed a fake punt, where Chris Jones tricked everyone (including most of his own team) and took off like a gazelle to keep the drive alive. This mixture of a fake punt, trick plays and the usual stuff resulted in a TD for Dak, a beer shower for Dak courtesy of the black hole and a 17-10 lead.
After the Raiders brought it back to a 17 tie, and just as it was looking like so many Cowboys games this season, it got weird. First there was the Cowboys 4th down effort that needed the chains to determine the spot of the ball, when the chains weren’t enough, ref Gene Steratore got out the officiating tool known as ‘the index card’. The card proved beyond doubt that it was a first down for the Cowboys. Dan Bailey kicked a FG to put the Cowboys up by 3, so all the Cowboys D had to do was stop the Raiders! It would have been game over had Brown intercepted Carr’s pass, but he didn’t. Instead, a couple of plays later, on 4th and 10 Carr looked downfield for Crabtree, the pass wasn’t great and I’m not sure that Crabtree would’ve caught it but he did draw a massive PI penalty off Lewis for a 1st down at the 15. With the clock winding down the best the Cowboys could hope for was an Oakland FG and overtime, that was until Derek Carr decided that he was going to win the game. As he closed in on the end zone Jeff Heath came across to stop a diving Carr, and this is where the weirdness gets off the charts, Carr fumbles and the ball goes over the goal line and out of the end zone, just past the pylon…Touchback! And Dallas gets the ball back at the 20 to see out the remaining time, Cowboys win!! Who’d have thunked it!
So, Cowboys win. But they did their best to keep the Raiders in it, right up till the end. Offensively, they were average at best. This ‘let’s run. No, let’s pass. No, let’s do something else’ game plan is terrible. There’s little to no momentum being generated and there are too many 3rd and long situations that they find hard to turn into 1st downs.
Defensively, a bright first half turned into a poor second half. Again, the secondary showed some bright moments and they teamed up well with the linebackers in both run and pass defense.
Overall, not a vintage performance but a win’s a win. Now onto the next one
Week 16 Preview
He’s baaaaaaaaaack! I’m not sure if the last 6 weeks have gone quickly or not but what I do know is that Zeke’s back from his spa break, and he’s looking in amazing shape.
The Cowboys host the Seattle Seahawks this week, the first time at at&t since November 2015. The reason I remember it so well is that I attended the game with my Seahawks loving daughter. This time it’s Christmas Eve so one of us will get the gift we want, the other gets nothing.
How many ‘Must win’ games is this now? Too many for a team that should never have lost to Green Bay or the LA Rams. Offensively, what you gain on the swings you lose on the roundabouts. Zeke’s back but Tyron could be out. Zeke makes a big difference to this offense, and not just the run game. If the Seahawks focus on Zeke then it’s a big game for Beasley and the other receivers. Losing Tyron brings in Byron Bell and he needs blocking help from the TE’s & RB’s, a game plan that keeps the chains moving (not with the help of an index card this week), that produces TD’s and not FG’s and keeps Wilson off the field should be enough to get the W.
Defensively, it’s about containment. Keeping Wilson in the pocket and stopping the Seahawks from running wide, the secondary need to keep tight to the receivers so that Wilson can’t get a quick pass off. The D line are looking a little banged up going into the final 2 games but they need to find ways to get to the QB if Seattle’s offense is to stay off the field.
Prediction: Seahawks 24 Cowboys 31
Twelve Days of Cowboysmas
12 Solo tackles for Taco
11 Beasley’s sauce
10 Switzer’s TD punt return
9 Is in the broadcast booth
8 T 2 is the GOAT
7 Points Vs Atlanta
6 Games without Zeke
5 Super bowl rings
4 Dak Prescott
3 Division rivals
2 Many losses
And a Hall of Fame bust for Jerry
House Seattle come to castle at&t after getting a beating in their last battle. House Dallas are on a run of being victorious in their last 3 battles without Prince Zeke. The Prince is back from his enforced exile in the land of Mexico and is looking to wreak havoc on House Seattle. House Seattle have a warrior who is completely over the top, he is known as OTT, that is Tyler Ott. Tyler comes from a long line of Ott’s, his father was Phewits Ott who was a very cold man. His brother has a general store called Ott Stuff and his Uncle believed in reincarnation, he said that he’d been a little Otter in a previous life.
Witten is finally here
Happy holidays to all Cowboys fans
You can follow me on Twitter @whitey500