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.