The Dallas Cowboys have gone 1-3 in November, falling behind the NFC leaders and now giving their division rivals some renewed hope. But despite the bad month, Owner and General Manager Jerry Jones says he still feels good about where the team is and where it's headed.
Yesterday's overtime loss to the Las Vegas Raiders wasn't nearly as ugly as the one-sided beatdowns from the Kansas City Chiefs and Denver Broncos in previous weeks. But still, dropping that home game in front of the huge Thanksgiving Day audience is a sour pill for anyone with a vested interest in the Cowboys swallow.
Nevertheless, Jerry's comments today sound far more optimistic than dejected in the face of recent disappointments.
Biggest reason there’s no panic among #Cowboys: they’re 7-4 in 10 games w/o Demarcus Lawrence, 4 w/o Randy Gregory, 2 w/o Amari Cooper and 1 1/2 w/o CeeDee Lamb. Jerry Jones: “The way we are playing right now, I feel good that we’re 7-4, because I know what we’ve got coming.”
— Ed Werder (@WerderEdESPN) November 26, 2021
There's no denying that having these star players back to work will make the Cowboys far more competitive. They likely win yesterday with at least one of Cooper or Lamb playing and perhaps even the prior week in Kansas City.
Heck, put Zack Martin on the field in Week One and Dallas probably starts the year 8-0.
It's been that kind of season, and thankfully the Cowboys have had enough to overcome absences and still be closer to the top of the conference with only six games left to play. It's logical for Jerry and anyone else to think that Dallas will be a legitimate contender in January even with this string of setbacks.
The remaining games, except Week 17 against the Arizona Cardinals, are all against teams with losing records. Four of those occur within the NFC East, where Dallas is already 2-0 in previous meetings with the Eagles and Giants.
Beating up on the Saints and their division rivals will help the W-L record but will still leave questions about who the Cowboys really are going into the tournament. That Arizona game could help, but any optimism right now is still mitigated by a long history of disappointing postseason appearances.
These last few losses have dampened the enthusiasm around this being a special year for the Cowboys. Hopefully, getting back key players on both sides of the ball will get things back to the feelgood atmosphere of the first half of the season.