The Dallas Cowboys are now 1-3 to start the 2020 season and Mike McCarthy's head coaching tenure. They overcame a 31-14 halftime deficit to make it a competitive game, but came up short and lost 49-38 to the Cleveland Browns.
Dak Prescott threw for 502 yards and four touchdowns as the lone bright spot for Dallas today. That said, he did throw the game-sealing interception on the final drive and could have several more than Cleveland players dropped.
Another turnover came early in the game when Myles Garrett strip-sacked Prescott after easily beating a Terence Steele block. That play led to Steele, who started the game at right tackle, being benched for Brandon Knight.
The offense clicked much better after Knight came into the game. However, an Ezekiel Elliott fumble and a virtual no-show from the Cowboys defense allowed the Browns to build the early lead and make Dallas' job too difficult in the second half.
Odell Beckham Jr. had fun day against his old rivals, scoring three touchdowns in his first game against Dallas since leaving the Giants. One of those scores came in the clutch; a 50-yard touchdown run that helped the Browns extend their lead after Dallas closed to within three points in the 4th Quarter.
This is the third-straight week now that the Cowboys have a dug a hole for themselves in the first half. They got away with it in Week 2 against the Falcons, but now Seattle and Cleveland have made them pay for the slow starts and turnovers.
- I hope someone will ask McCarthy why they decided to go with Steele at RT today. Even the basement bloggers knew that Knight was the better option and it was immediately proven when he entered the game. The only reason I can fathom is that they were worried about Tyron Smith's ability to stay in the game and hoped to minimize the disruption if he went out. But clearly, that would have been the lesser of evils.
- Another benching seemed to occur early when Donovan Wilson came in at safety after Darian Thompson gave up one of the receiving touchdowns to Beckham. That's a move the Cowboys must have been contemplating already as Wilson came in early and remained the rest of the way. He registered a sack a led the team in tackles, but also was on the wrong end of some Cleveland's successful passes.
- The defense got run over early with over 160 rushing yards from the Browns in the first half. Nick Chubb leaving the game injured didn't change much as backup D'Ernest Johnson went for 95 yards on just 13 carries.
- Amari Cooper has 12 catches for 134 yards and a touchdown as the leading receiver while CeeDee Lamb scored two touchdowns himself. We also Dalton Schultz put in another good game with 72 yards and a score.
- The Cowboys' drop to 1-3 but remain in a first-place tie with Washington in the comically awful NFC East. Washington lost today at home to Baltimore while the Eagles and Giants are still looking for their first wins of 2020.
- Dallas will remain home next week as they host the Giants in their first division game of the season. If they can't get a win in that one against one of the NFL's worst teams, you have to wonder if Jerry Jones won't be looking to make some kind of statement move to spark change,