They're the World Champions.
It's no secret who the New England Patriots are, and it's certainly no secret what they're capable of on a football field. Nevertheless, the Cowboys put forth a disappointing effort in their game against New England last Sunday.
Before you get flustered, let me specify. The Dallas Cowboys Defense certainly came to ball, and they even held the reigning Super Bowl MVP and his favorite toys in check for a majority of the first half. Mission accomplished there.
The problem last Sunday laid within the offense, or lack thereof, of the Dallas Cowboys. They managed to put together six total points. That's their lowest offensive output since January 17th, 2010… a divisional playoff loss to Brett Favre's Minnesota Vikings.
What was the problem?
Check This Out
When Brandon Weeden buys any sort of goods or services, I bet he pays with a check because that's how he runs his offense. The Cowboy QB failed to take advantage of a weak (compared to the rest of their team) New England secondary. He has a field runner in Terrance Williams and just refused to exploit that.
Maybe it's the play calling, or maybe it's that Brandon legitimately hates throwing it downfield. Either way the Cowboys could not have seriously expected to dink and dunk their way to victory against Bill Belichick. As a result the Cowboy offense became extremely predictable on Sunday and easy to defend by the Patriots.
First And Ten AKA First And Run
The Cowboys have 132 plays on 1st down. They have ran 75 times (56.8%) of the time.
— Marcus Mosher (@Marcus_Mosher) October 12, 2015
I'm actually shocked at how low that is, I would have guessed that it'd be somewhere in the 75% neck of the woods.
The Cowboys had one of the best run games across the entire NFL just a year ago. Their offensive line has been heralded as perhaps the best in the world. What is going on?
When you are predictable and have no threat of a pass, the run game falters. The Cowboys have to find a way to overcome this deficiency if they hope to have any victories without the services of Tony Romo and Dez Bryant. The offensive line has to step up and live up to their offseason hype. They are a unit that has not been decimated by injury in the way that the skill positions have been, it is their time to carry the team.
Joseph Randle has been vanilla, Darren McFadden has been unimpressive, and Christine Michael has been used twice in as many games. The Cowboys have to establish an identity with how they run the ball… whoever that may be. They need to run with authority, and they need the offensive line to play at the level we've come to know as the normal for that to happen.
This was one of the worst offensive performances that Dallas Cowboys fans have seen in a long time. At times it felt like we were watching the fourth preseason game. The Cowboys have to start getting far more creative and testing opponents or their predictability is going to continue to doom them.
At 2-3 the Cowboys are nestled at second in the division. There is still a lot of football to be played, but it needs to be done differently to yield different results. Perhaps the recent change in quarterback from Brandon Weeden to Matt Cassel will give this offense the spark that it desperately needs.