Ezekiel Elliott had just eight yards on nine carries, and that tells you about all you need to know about how things went for the Cowboys today in Denver. Zeke and the offense got shut down while the Dallas defense offered little resistance, allowing the Broncos to dominate at home in all phases.
Despite solid production last week against a very good Giants defense, the Cowboys couldn’t get the run game going today. Elliot was stuffed at the line of scrimmage on nearly every touch. Dallas abandoned the run fairly quickly and any chance of Zeke finding rhythm was lost, but it’s hard to think he’d have had much success based on what we saw.
The Cowboys’ defense took a beating in every sense. Already missing Orlando Scandrick with a hand injury last week, they lost Nolan Carroll (concussion) and Chidobe Awuzie (hamstring) early. That left Dallas with just Anthony Brown and Jourdan Lewis as active cornerbacks. Trevor Siemian threw four touchdowns and C.J. Anderson rushed for 118 yards.
While the loss was a demoralizing one, it may not hurt too much down the road. A road loss in the AFC is about as benign as it gets for the Cowboys. What’s more, the Eagles also fell to 1-1 today with a road loss in Kansas City. Washington, who lost last week, defeated the Rams today. The Giants play tomorrow night as they host the Lions. At worst, the entire NFC East may be tied up going into Week 3.
- Before today, Dak Prescott had never really lost a game by more than three points. He did start last year’s 27-13 loss to Philadelphia in Week 17, but he only played the first two drives as the Cowboys were just waiting for the playoffs. This was, by far, the worst loss of his young NFL career.
- With two interceptions today, Prescott already has half of his 2016 total. He did have two-pick game last year in the Cowboys second meeting with the Giants.
- DeMarcus Lawrence matched last week’s two-sack performance with another one in Denver, throwing a force fumble on top of it. Last year’s sack leader, Benson Mayowa, only had six for the season. It looks like Lawrence is on his way to a monster season, which isn’t all that surprising with his contract expiring.
- With 10 catches and 97 yards, Jason Witten hit two new career milestones. He moved to fourth all-time in NFL history for receptions and became only the second TE in history with 12,000 receiving yards or more. His one touchdown tied him with Michael Irvin for third all-time in Cowboys history.
- Rookie Jourdan Lewis got his first career interception in his first game. Lewis snagged an overthrown pass while the Cowboys were still trying to find a way to close the gap. It was tough day for Lewis otherwise, though, as he had to try to stick with one of the league’s best route runners in Emmanuel Sanders.
- Dan Bailey’s 56-yard field goal matched his career long, which he’s hit a few times before this year.
- The Cowboys have a second road game next week, Monday Night Football against the Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals moved to 1-1 today with an overtime victory over the Indianapolis Colts.