The Dallas Cowboys season didn't go as expected at all. It's December and the Cowboys are officially a losing team, as their win-loss record dropped below .500 after falling to the Chicago Bears. At 6-7, the Cowboys still control their own destiny in a disappointing NFC East. By now, we've discussed Jason Garrett's future and the emerging head coach candidates for 2020. But the way this season is going, disappointment extends beyond the guy at the helm.
Coming into 2019, the future looked bright in Dallas. A ton of young key players like DeMarcus Lawrence and Ezekiel Elliott had been locked up to long-term contracts with others like Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper on deck. Sophomores Leighton Vander Esch and Michael Gallup were set to follow up pretty solid seasons and new acquisitions like veteran Robert Quinn and rookie Tony Pollard were expected to make the difference on their respective roles.
Long story short, the Dallas Cowboys were supposed to be a special football team not only in 2019 but in years to come. But things have changed after their first 13 games of the season.
Concerning questions regarding the future of this team begin to emerge. Players and coaches that were already a success in our minds don't look quite like that right now.
Kris Richard, who many supported as a strong candidate to be the Cowboys' head coach in the future just last season, is having a terrible year with a secondary that's constantly beaten in coverage. Kellen Moore seemed like a hidden gem at the beginning of the season but has since been decent at best. These two young coaches have questionable futures and even more in a Cowboys team that will likely undergo plenty of staff changes this offseason.
When discussing the players, it's more of the same. Let me be the first to say I like Amari Cooper a lot and I'm convinced he'll be extended by Dallas, but I'm not as certain as I was prior to the season. After all, Cooper is tied for fifth in drops in the league this season. He's not the only Cowboy in that category, either. John Williams pointed out on Twitter how the Cowboys are the only team in the NFL with four players in the top 20 in drops.
A group of linebackers that was described as one of the league's best is struggling frequently against the run and getting exposed in the passing game as well. We expected a lot from Xavier Woods, but the safety position has unsurprisingly been a disaster for Dallas this season.
Overall, it feels like we overrated the Cowboys roster before the season.
Amari Cooper, Dak Prescott, Byron Jones are just some of the key players the front office will have to make decisions about next offseason. The same goes for many members of the coaching staff. Before this campaign, it looked like all of them deserved a shot. Now, it's not as clear.
How much will the Cowboys change with a new head coach in 2020? Whoever takes the wheel next season will have some tough questions to answer. And while we're convinced a new head coach can take this talented team to glory, that likely won't happen until plenty of other questions are answered first.