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Cowboys Offense Must Involve Cole Beasley

Mauricio Rodriguez



Cole Beasley

The Dallas Cowboys are struggling to get things going. On offense, on defense and on special teams, things are not going as planned. Not even close. After losing their second game of the season - this time against the Los Angeles Rams - the Cowboys have a lot to think about.

On offense, Dak Prescott and company looked alright during the first half. It was the second half when all started to fail.

David Moore on Twitter

Dak Prescott says he must improve his accuracy. QB was 9-of-21 for 97 yds w/ a TD and INT in second half.

After halftime, the Cowboys were out-coached, and they were outplayed. Dak missed some throws, and the offense as a whole failed to execute. The Cowboys scored only six points during the second half. The Rams scored 19.

After the first quarter of the 2017 season, the Dallas Cowboys are sitting at 2-2. It's only fair to say that, not even on those two wins, have the Cowboys had a dominant performance. They truly haven't.

I can't help but wonder about a specific player who was very important for this offense's success last year. A player we haven't seen that much this season.

Wide Receiver Cole Beasley.

Cowboys Headlines - Is Cole Beasley Looking At A Lesser Role In 2016?

In 2016, Cole Beasley led this team in receptions. He was one of the most important players for Dak Prescott's development as a rookie and he simply helped the team move the ball. When Dez Bryant was out with an injury, Beasley was the most important receiver of the team.

Let's take a look at Beasley's numbers through four weeks, compared to last season's stats.

  • 2016: 29 targets, 23 receptions, 279 yards.
  • 2017: 20 targets, 11 receptions, 86 yards.

Why hasn't Cole been as involved on this offense as he should be?

I think there are more than a couple of reasons for this. And I also think Scott Linehan should start thinking about how to get 11 more involved as soon as possible.

It's worth mentioning, that opposing defenses have been very cautious regarding the Cowboys' slot WR. He's faced double-teams, as well as triple-teams.

Marcus Mosher on Twitter

3rd and 10. Look how ARZ covered Cole Beasley....

But that shouldn't be enough to limit Beasley, and that is probably not the reason he is not being used more by the Scott Linehan's offense.

Ever since the 2016 Cowboys season ended last January, we've been talking about how Dez Bryant and Dak Prescott would develop a chemistry that would take the QB-WR duo to another level.

But it just seems that chemistry isn't there. And at times, it even feels like Dallas is trying to force such thing. Maybe they should change things up a bit.

Last year, Beasley did have a connection going on with Dak Prescott. Why not go back to that? Even though he is being paid more attention by opposing defenses, this offense needs to find the way to make it work.

Scott Linehan should be working on ways to get one of the best slot wide receivers the ball and help this offense get going. He can be that difference maker.

Maybe even try to use him at the same time as Ryan Switzer. He might be a rookie, but with their similar skill sets, they can become a threat for other defenses. These types of receivers are not easy to cover, let alone two of them.

The Cowboys offense has had slow starts, and slow endings, as was the case yesterday. They need to find the way to be effective for 60 minutes.

Cole Beasley might be the answer. If he gets going, the whole offense will get going.

Tell me what you think about "Cowboys Offense Must Involve Cole Beasley" in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!

I love to write, I love football and I love the Dallas Cowboys. I've been rooting for America's team all the way from Mexico ever since I can remember. If you want to talk football, I'm in... You'll find me at @PepoR99.

  • nick

    I agree because dak is at his best in the short to intermediate passing game. Why not work to his strengths and get beasley and switzer on the field together on 3rd and short, it only makes sense. They can’t double everyone especially if zeke is in the back field. If witten or t-will or even zeke have to come off the field sometimes on 3rd down then so be it, I’m not saying take them off all at once but change it up a little, switzer and beasley would be very hard to defend. We need to spread these defenses out and get our QB comfortable in critical situations.

    • Mauricio Rodriguez

      I couldn’t agree more with you. And you said it perfectly, “it only makes sense.” Thanks for reading, Nick.

  • Paul McDavid

    The Cowboys need to come up with some plays that include Cole Beasley & Ryan Switzer on the field at the same time! The Cowboys never seem to use the weapons it has on the team, come on the only time Ryan Switzer is on the field is to run that dump jet sweep. Let’s go 4 to 5 WR’s and spread the Defense out and make them go man to man coverage! Believe me someone will get open between Dez, Terrance, Cole , Butler and Ryan! That is if the Offense line will get their heads out of their butts and start pass blocking! How about, leaving a RB in to help pass block, that is a idea! Come on Cowboys! coaches and players! you can do so much better, just execute! and please stop playing so predictable and conservative!!
    GO COWBOYS #1 FAN!!!! P.S. someone tell Zek to put down those 12oz curls, and pick up some real weights! Because he is a step slower than that season, and looks like he wasn’t ready for the season!

    • Derek Johnson

      You know why? They seem scared to take Witten out of certain packages..or any packages period…ive been saying this for years. Witten is not the threat he once was..and having him out there sometimes..makes the Cowboys offense typical and easier to u said…more Switzer and Beasely in the same packages!

  • dallas1966

    I think the Cowboys offense and defense will be re-tooled after bye week. I truly believe that the Cowboys coaching staff will figure it out, by going to what made Dak successful, last year.

    With the opposition defense playing nine in the box, by selling out to stop the Cowboys running game, expect the Cowboys to counter. When the opposition stop blitzing to force Dak, to beat them from the pocket, expect the Cowboys to counter.
    Scott Linehan is being paid big bucks by Jerry Jones to figure out what is causing the Cowboys offense to be inconsistent, and to fix it, ditto Rod Marinell on the defensive side of the ball.

    This means, that some starters will be put on notice, and changes to be made on personnel, both offense, defense and special teams.

    If those expectations aren’t met, then it will be another disappointed season, and another 21years of Cowboys kool aid with nothing to show, but hype built on the legacy of the teams of Staubach-Dorsett-Pearson, and Aikman-Smith-Irvin, but productive of the Meredith, White, Romo era of miss opportunities to bringing home the coveted Lombardi Trophy.

    How many more years of suffering in the wilderness, which began January 1997, with the loss to the Carolina Panthers, in the playoffs?

  • William Pep Hatcher

    Beasley is not a great WR. He’s not big or fast and we don’t run illegal pick plays enough for him to get open like Welker and Kup. We need a TE and two more dynamic WR’s for this offense to shine. Defenses are way ahead of us talent wise. Cordell Patterson would have been perfect for us and Our dynamic TE is on IR. Next draft WR first rd, DT second rd and LB third.

  • eric jensen

    They should with Beasly & Witten, but go 6-11yrds, this 2-4 yrs doesn’t cut it!! Make their cb&safety go 15-20 yrds,to open up middle of field! LB can’t keep Witten & Beasley! It open up run ,QB runs !! Either fire God damn off coordinator! Give or change ur system, be more creative with off!!

  • Tristan Hays

    I’m a huge Cowboys fan and I’ve always been honest when it comes to the team. The Cowboys are just not very good this year with every aspect of the team. It’s like a completely different team than last year. It’s going to take a few years to be where they need to be.

  • Darryl Jones

    I think that Dez is demanding more balls thrown to him, this disrupting the offense

  • David Taylor

    I call this the “Diaper Baby Dez” effect. Dez is under the misconception that he has to be thrown the ball a bunch of times per game, even it doesn’t help the team. Time to roll out the script that worked so well….yes and Dez was out injured. I don’t believe that it is an coincidence

Star Blog

Sean’s Scout: WR Deonte Thompson A Vertical Threat for Dallas Cowboys

Sean Martin



Sean's Scout: WR Deonte Thompson A Vertical Threat for Dallas Cowboys

Finally addressing their underwhelming cast of wide receivers, the Dallas Cowboys signed journeyman Deonte Thompson yesterday. The seventh-year pro spent 2017 with both the Chicago Bears and Buffalo Bills, hauling in 38 passes for 555 yards and two touchdowns.

Thompson was undrafted in 2012 out of Florida, making both the Cowboys' free agent signings to date former UDFAs. The Cowboys added LB Joe Thomas earlier in the week, who you can learn more about in Sean's Scout as well.

In desperate need of speed and play making ability on the outside, here is a look at what WR Deonte Thompson can bring to the Dallas Cowboys.

WR Deonte Thompson: Strengths

Thompson1 - Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

Deonte Thompson plays with a great understanding of his own frame, using his length to give defensive backs problems up the field. Not a true "burner", Thompson takes some time to accelerate down the field, but can separate vertically.

Thompson runs smooth routes, using his long strides to get on DBs in a hurry. Once in position to free himself at the stem of a route, Thompson showed the ability to consistently turn his hips and complete a number of underneath and deep routes at a high level.

Thompson2 - Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

Deonte Thompson may not win on many throws "above the rim", but he is above average at the catch point securing passes with his strong hands.

Snagging the ball outside of his frame is not much of an issue for Thompson, who makes the most of his run-after-the-catch opportunities by effortlessly receiving the ball in stride.

At this stage of his career, Thompson may not be an every down player, but this is a player the Cowboys can absolutely find a way to get involved in their sputtering passing offense next season - at the very least replacing the role of FA WR Brice Butler.

WR Deonte Thompson: Weaknesses

Deonte Thompson should not be expected to go over the top on many defenses for the Cowboys in 2018. While the traits are there to flash as that sort of player, Thompson simply is not at his best trying to track down deep vertical passes.

When Thompson does not create separation on his initial burst up the field, there was a tendency for him to get shoved around at the catch point. Still coming up with his fair share of passes, the degree of difficulty on these catches was often increased by his inability to truly play through contact.

This is not a player with a powerful lower body, relying on upper body flex and foot speed to free himself and create plays in space. Overall balance is a strength for Thompson, but he rarely is able to break tackles or move defenders as a blocker in the running game.

WR Deonte Thompson: Summary

Thompson3 - Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

The Cowboys should know what they are getting in Deonte Thompson, who has not had the benefit of great quarterback play in recent seasons. The hope in Dallas is that a number of receivers on the bottom of the depth chart can stand out this summer to make the team out of a crowded room.

This group of Ryan Switzer, Lance Lenoir, Noah Brown, and KD Cannon will now include Deonte Thompson - who should have the edge over most of these names.

Thompson won't be the difference in the Cowboys' offense having a bounce back season in 2018, but his raw athleticism and effortless ability to serve as a deep threat could surely make an impact in Dak Prescott's progression.

Tell us what you think about "Sean’s Scout: WR Deonte Thompson A Vertical Threat for Dallas Cowboys" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

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Star Blog

Using Win Probabilities To Evaluate Decision Making: Cowboys Kick Vs. Raiders

Kevin Brady



Takeaway Tuesday: Cowboys' Defense Silently Shined, Jeff Heath Saved The Season 1
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles have surpassed the Dallas Cowboys in more ways than one, but on Super Bowl Sunday, their willingness to "be aggressive" and "take chances" shined through the most. Eagles head coach Doug Pederson was congratulated by the masses for not coaching scared, and instead going for it on key fourth downs and even attempting trick plays.

When you really evaluate those decisions, however, they shouldn't even be thought of as "risky." If anything, they were simply the obvious call.

Over the last few months I have been working with win probability models, looking to validate and refine those available to the public. I can't share too much about the work as of yet (there will hopefully be a published article in the future), but the work is certainly promising.

What I can say is this. Dennis Lock and Dan Nettleton worked to utilize random forests to estimate win probabilities before each play in an NFL game. These "forests" are similar to decision tree machine learning, cycling through random trees of past data to predict future outcomes.

Brian Burke has been utilizing his model for a while now, and Pro Football Reference has a simple, yet effective model as well. For my project, I have been working to find the "best" ways to estimate those win probabilities in order to inform decision making by head coaches and coordinators.

If you aren't utilizing analytics correctly in today's NFL, you're falling behind. And if you aren't willing to take calculated risks based off of what these numbers say and mean, you are really falling behind.

How does this all relate to the Cowboys?

Well, Cowboys Nation has been pretty consistent in their main criticism of head coach Jason Garrett: he's too conservative. They say he coaches scared, and they believe he punts the ball away too often between the 40's. Numbers accumulated by writers such as Bob Sturm and Marcus Mosher back up these claims, but I wanted to examine Garrett's decision making through the win probability lens.

I took to Twitter to ask the fan base for specific scenarios in which they felt Garrett was too conservative. Then, I ran these situations through the win probability model to determine how these decisions affected the outcomes.

Over a series of posts I will detail what the model says about the Cowboys' decision making in these key moments. First, we go back to December of last season where the Cowboys had their season on the line in Oakland.

Cowboys at Raiders, 2017

One instance which was consistently brought up was ironically from a Cowboys win. Yes, a win!

The Raiders had played the Cowboys close all game long, and with their season on the line Dallas was in position to put those pesky Raiders away. Tied at 17 they entered a fourth and goal situation at the Raiders' 1 yard line. The Cowboys decided to kick the field goal and grab a 20-17 lead. While Dallas did hang on to win, this was only because of a miraculous play by Jeff Heath which resulted in a fumble and a touchback.

Many of the fans who tweeted at me seem to think the Cowboys should have went for the touchdown on fourth down, rather than take their three points. But what does the model say?

Prior to the fourth down play, the Cowboys had about an 85% chance to win the game. After kicking the field goal and kicking the ball away to Oakland, that probability went down to just above 80%. Had the Cowboys gone for it and been stuffed at the Raiders' 1 yard line, that probability would have dropped all the way to just over 57%.

But the model does believe that Garrett made the right decision. Of course, had Dallas scored a touchdown, the game would've virtually been over, but the variance in probabilities suggests that kicking the field goal and taking the sure points was a good move.

Next week, I explain where Jason Garrett and company may have gone wrong during a key 4th down decision against the Los Angeles Rams. If you have any suggestions for plays/situations you'd like evaluated, please comment below!

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Star Blog

Cowboys en Español: Nuevas Contrataciones, ¿Podría Ser Allen Hurns la Siguiente?

Mauricio Rodriguez



Cowboys en Español: Nuevas Contrataciones, ¿Podría Ser Allen Hurns la Siguiente?

La agencia libre de los Dallas Cowboys comenzó un poco tarde, siendo el último equipo en toda la liga de la NFL en realizar una contratación este offseason. Ahora, con algunas caras nuevas en el equipo, comienzan las preguntas inevitables. ¿Qué jugadores tendrán un impacto y qué jugadores serán una contratación irrelevante?

Sólo el tiempo lo dirá. Las piezas que añadieron los Cowboys no son agentes libres de gran renombre pero podrían llegar a tener algún impacto en el 2018. Sin embargo, no todas las adquisiciones de Dallas han sido por medio de la agencia libre.

Hace unos días, los Raiders y los Cowboys acordaron un trade por el fullback Jamize Olawale. Días después de perder a Keith Smith (quien fue contratado por... los Raiders), Dallas no quiso echarse todavía otra necesidad encima, así que solucionó rápidamente su hueco en la posición que le abrirá camino a Ezekiel Elliott.

Además de enviar a Olawale a los Cowboys, los Raiders consiguieron una selección de quinta ronda de parte de Dallas y ellos entregaron su sexta ronda. En otras palabras, los Cowboys sólo renunciaron 19 turnos en las rondas tardías del Draft por un fullback que será de ayuda constante para esta ofensiva.

A pesar de ser tres años más grande que Keith Smith, Olawale le brinda a los Cowboys potencial para participar en el juego aéreo así como en el terrestre.

Por la agencia libre, los Cowboys obtuvieron ayuda ofensiva y defensiva.

Dallas Cowboys Sign LB Joe Thomas to 2 Year Deal

Joe Thomas, (no, no el que todos conocemos como uno de los mejores tackles de la historia) el linebacker que viene de los Green Bay Packers, usará la estrella este 2018. Mi compañero y escritor de Staff Sean Martin escribió una excelente pieza analizando a detalle al nuevo defensivo. 

Thomas definitivamente no será un titular, pero sin duda ayudará a un grupo de equipos especiales que necesitan bastante apoyo esta temporada. Además, es un linebacker rápido y atlético que podrá brillar como un jugador de rotación en una defensiva que incluye a Sean Lee y a Jaylon Smith.

Esta contratación no hace que los Cowboys dejen de tener una gran necesidad por un LB, pero da una profundidad que urgía a la posición.

Questions Surround Cowboys WR Position After Deonte Thompson Signing

El último movimiento y quizá el más discutido por los aficionados de los Cowboys es la adquisición de Deonte Thompson. Un receptor abierto que ha batallado para conseguir una casa en la NFL llega a un equipo que cuenta con nombres como Dez Bryant, Terrance Williams y Cole Beasley, pero que aún necesita mucho más producción.

¿Acaso la adición de Thompson al roster hace que WR deje de ser una necesidad para el equipo de los Cowboys? Claro que no, pero añade un talento que quizá pueda ayudar al equipo en ciertos aspectos.

Thompson es un jugador muy rápido, lo cual es algo que esta ofensiva necesita para abrir el campo un poco más. Un corredor de rutas bastante sólido con manos seguras. Thompson viene probablemente a ser una versión mejorada de Brice Butler por $2.5M.

Quizá fue un error de parte de la administración garantizarle un millón de su contrato. ¿Por qué garantizarle dinero a un jugador que ni siquiera debería tener un lugar asegurado en el equipo? Sin embargo, Thompson parece ser un contribuidor a la ofensiva.

Pero no fue el WR en la agencia libre del que se ha hablado esta semana en el mundo de los Dallas Cowboys. De hecho, aún después de firmar su contrato, no es el más discutido entre los aficionados.

Allen Hurns, receptor que fue cortado de Jacksonville, es un jugador que podría llegar a hacer un impacto inmediato en la ofensiva de Dak Prescott y proveerle al QB un potencial mejor amigo. A pesar de que muchos esperarían que conseguir a Hurns significaría decirle adiós a Dez Bryant, la verdad es que no sería necesario.

Hurns podría tomar el rol que Terrance Williams posee ahora como receptor "Z" y llevar a esta ofensiva a otro nivel. Todd Archer de ESPN reportó que la reciente adquisición de Deonte Thompson no significa que la posibilidad de ver a Hurns usando la estrella ha acabado.

Todos queremos ver acción en la agencia libre, aunque a veces lo sensato sea ser conservadores. Así como muchos aficionados de los Cowboys se quejan de la falta de movimientos, muchos aficionados de los Steelers y los Patriots agradecen que sus equipos tengan esta filosofía de no gastar mucho en agencia libre.

La diferencia son los resultados en el campo.

Sin embargo, Allen Hurns definitivamente parece como una opción muy viable para los Cowboys, y una adición que simplemente tendría mucho sentido. Sólo queda esperar si lograrán firmarlo o si un equipo (como los Jets, quienes han mostrado mucho interés y tienen bastante espacio en el tope salarial) logra convencerlo de no regresar a Dallas.

Por ahora, esperamos. Quizá hasta que los Cowboys firmen a alguien más. O quizá hasta la llegada del NFL Draft.

Tell me what you think about "Cowboys en Español: Nuevas Contrataciones, ¿Podría Ser Allen Hurns la Siguiente?" in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!

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