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2020 Season a Complete Organizational Failure for the Dallas Cowboys

The 2020 season for the Dallas Cowboys has gotten off to a disastrous start. And that may be an understatement. Everything that could go wrong for the Dallas Cowboys has gone wrong in 2020. They’ve struggled to overcome injuries in 2020 and even before losing key players were a dichotomy.

It’s gotten to the point where there are no answers coming this season. Even as they sit in first place, there’s zero hope that this thing is going to get better. Actually, it may get worse and much worse before it gets better. Looking at the rest of the schedule, it’s hard to envision it getting any better.

This has been an abject failure from the top of the organization (Jerry Jones) to bottom (the players).

The front office owns part of this failure by not fully investing in working to fix a defense that wasn’t good in 2019, but has become historically bad in 2020. The issues that were revealed by the Indianapolis Colts and Los Angeles Rams during the 2018 season are still issues. And while the players certainly carry some of the water, the inability and unwillingness of the front office to make a serious investment on the interior of the defensive line or at safety continues to show up, every single week.

Yes, they made an effort to bring in veteran free agents to help this team improve on the defensive side of the football, but those efforts have largely been fruitless aside from Aldon Smith. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix never played a down for the Cowboys. DontariPoe has struggled to provide much through the first six games of the season. Everson Griffen hasn’t lived up to the expectations most had when the Cowboys signed him this summer. Daryl Worley has been a shadow of the player we saw with the Oakland Raiders.

The front office has struggled to find defensive players in the draft that could be long-term impact players and that’s starting to show. Though we like Trevon Diggs, it’s hard to expect a rookie to come in at cornerback and be a shutdown corner. There are other players that we like, but who knows if they’ll pan out. The fact that their defensive heavy draft of 2017 (Taco Charlton, Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis, Xavier Woods) could likely produce zero players who will see a second contract is a problem. The front office has struggled to find defensive players with much consistency and we’re seeing the toll that’s taking on this team.

On the field, the players who are supposed to be the stars of this team are failing to play up to their potential. Ezekiel Elliott continues to struggle ball security. Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch continue to struggle getting off blocks and making an impact in the running game. DeMarcus Lawrence hasn’t been consistent through the first six games of the season. Michael Gallup continues to struggle with drops.

Offensively it’s probably not going to get much better this week as they face one of the best defensive fronts in the NFL in the Washington Football Team. The Cowboys offensive line is struggling incredibly right now and depending on how long Zack Martin will remain in concussion protocol, those struggles will continue.

Andy Dalton wasn’t great on Monday Night against the Arizona Cardinals, but changing your quarterback isn’t going to help things if you can’t block anybody. Changing your quarterback situation isn’t going to matter if you have a defense that provides as much resistance as a chain link fence during a flood.

They may have a coaching problem on both sides of the football but there’s also a talent issue, especially on defense. Six games into a coaching tenure under these circumstances makes it incredibly difficult to evaluate the coaching staff. The reality is, that this defense isn’t working.

Though you never want to give up on a season six games in, there isn’t much to be optimistic about moving forward.

With as many players that are potential free agents as the Cowboys have on defense heading into 2021, there’s little hope that they can turn it around in one offseason. Though there will certainly be an opportunity to upgrade at a couple positions in free agency or the draft, they won’t be able to upgrade everywhere in just one offseason. That means we’re probably in for a long run of historically bad defensive play moving forward.

What do you think?

John Williams

Written by John Williams

Dallas Cowboys optimist bringing factual, reasonable takes to Cowboys Nation and the NFL Community. I wasn't always a Cowboys fan, but I got here as quick as I could.

Make sure you check out the Inside The Cowboys Podcast featuring John Williams and other analysts following America's Team.

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  1. It’s mainly a Jones problem. Neither Jerry or Stephen are qualified to be in charge of player personnel or contracts! They always are lazy and never negotiate until the very end and then succumb and give over priced contracts. DLaw used his surgery to blackmail Dallas and succeed! So did Crawford, Zeke, Jaylon, Cooper and they didn’t even negotiate with Dak until a day or 2 before the deadline.
    Jerry is a mediocre GM. He’s in the HOF as an owner nota GM but he thinks otherwise. It’s a joke. Jimmy’s players won 3 Super Bowls, the Jones’ have won 3 Wild Card games in 25 years! They are more interested in Johnnie Walker Blue. Sad. The Jones are and have been the root of the problem

  2. It is amazing how Dak made the team so much better than it is.
    While Dak was playing, the receivers led the league in drops but Dak never made it an excuse.
    The defense never got turnovers, the special teams stunk, Elliott ran for one yard on first down, the offense line let him get killed by the pass rush, Dak was always positive and never pointed fingers.
    Dak made a terrible, horrible team look competitive…while media totally got the situation backward and talked how Dak held back the super talented Cowboys.
    Talk about media getting it backwards…as usual.

  3. I agree in some of the things and not in other.
    This game is won on the trenches. If you don’t have the correct personnel in the field you are going to suffer and lose as we are now. Neither best teams in every sport, neither in this one have been capable of winning without most of their spine. Let’s examine in detail this: Steelers from 2019, they had one of the best defenses and they had some playmakers at offense. They lose their leader in Game 3 of the Season and the result were NO playoffs. Let’s move into NBA. 2019 Lakers were NO solid around Lebron, result NO playoffs. And we can continue to talk about examples…
    What I want to emphazise is that 2020 had been an odd year. But we can’t evaluate this staff ( at least on the Offensive side of the Ball) with only 6 games. Jerry gave 10 years to Jason Garret and that’s why most of us nowadays want immediate results. Jason Garret, if I was Cowboys GM should have gone after 2012 season ( 2nd straight season of 8-8 and losing in the Win or Go home against another Division Rival). Here one argument to agree that Jerry is the mistake as GM.
    I think this team is not so far from being competitive at least and it’s not as stated in years to come. We need a real playmaker in each line of the Defense to make this unit once again competitive. Someone that can shout and be a leader for the rest of the teammates.

  4. After years of a soft hand coach ( Jason Garrett) and a owner ( Jerry Jones ) who thinks He knows how to be A G.M time has caught up with the Dallas Cowboys. The moment has arrived for a deep long look by the Jones family at the state of the Dallas Cowboys.

  5. Don’t forget the massive stupid contracts given to Elliot,Lawrence,smith and now we have no money to help make Dallas competitive anymore! The Jones have finally accomplished failure due to their egos

  6. I recall yelling “what the hell?” during McCarthy’s 1st press conference with SJ and JJ.

    They gloated at how McCarthy have studied the nuances of the game and have scouting reports on all 32 teams, including the Cowboys! How McCarthy was going to apply a SuperBowl formula to a team underperforming under JG.

    When it was McCarthy’s time to talk…
    This mofo admitted to lying during interview to get job!
    He admitted to having “the goods” on the NFL!

    For JJ and SJ to not rescind their offer to at least buy themselves time… removes all credibility from the “Jones” namesake.

    SJ is far inferior to JJ!!!!
    This franchise is doomed for years to come!

  7. It is what it is. We are stuck with JJ and SJ forever. There will never be a change at GM as long as JJ is alive.

    This is the biggest challenge of McCarthy’s coaching career or it may be his shortest coaching stint. Does Mike care enough to turn this team around after losing Prescott for the season? (Yes.)

    1st DAL is getting healthier by the day. 2nd he will not allow Dalton run his course. 3rd he will cure Zeke’s fumbling. 4th he will re-learn DAL how it was to have a run offense. And, 5th he has to rely on defense to win.

    There is no hope in DAL if they don’t win in WAS, first.

  8. The good news is, Prescott is getting healthier by the second, the minute, the hour and by the day.

    There has been greater loses than what DAL experienced during this Pandemic. If they can’t afford to look back why can’t we? From now on it is how best we manage ourselves and time?

    Everybody agrees with everything you said. The only remaining questions are: How can we recover, learn and move on? How can we make ourselves stronger?

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