As the Cowboys rolled into SoFi stadium Sunday, Dallas proved they shouldn't have been anyone's underdog. They defeated the defending Super Bowl Champs 22-10 behind another outstanding defensive performance and a potent rushing attack.
In a matchup that pitted a reeling Los Angeles Rams offense and a dominant Cowboys defense against one another, the duo of Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard, combined with tremendous offensive line play, helped the Cowboys seal the victory yesterday.
Combining for 164 rushing yards and a touchdown, Elliott and Pollard, or thunder and lightning as I like to call them, fed off one another all game long. Zeke ran the ball 22 times for 78 yards, while Pollard had eight carries for 86 yards, including a game-changing run that helped the Cowboys regain the lead.
After falling behind early in the second quarter, the 57-yard touchdown run by Pollard gave the Cowboys a 16-10 lead in a game in which they would never trail again.
When the Cowboys have that much success on the ground, it's not just about the guys carrying the rock. There are plenty of kudos to hand out, and Pollard did that after the game crediting those up front who did a phenomenal job opening running lanes all game for the two backs.
“O-line did their job,” he said.
“It just shows the tenacity that those guys have upfront,” Pollard added. “That's how they practice, day in and day out. Just being physical and being a dominant force for us, it's paying off.”
Every team will struggle to block Aaron Donald, and outside the few sacks he was able to register on Tyler Smith, I loved how they played. Smith sharpened in the second half, and the Cowboys wore the Rams down with the rushing attack.
I don't know about anyone else, but I see the formula between Zeke and Pollard.
Elliott is fantastic in short yardage and as a blocker, and Pollard is the change of pace back. I love seeing them together in the backfield because it keeps teams guessing. Let Zeke be the bell cow, and when Pollard gets to the second level, he has a chance to do what he did yesterday.
Whether the rushing attack is effective like this week or if it struggles like last week, we are seeing Kellen Moore stick with it, and it is paying off. It allows Cooper Rush to play brilliant football by not turning it over, regardless of how many yards he throws. They are playing to their strengths and winning football games after everyone wrote them off.
The Cowboys scored two touchdowns yesterday, and both came from the strengths of their team: defense and the running game. The defense got them on the board with the strip sack first, and Pollard put them back ahead with his touchdown run.
This football team has all the confidence in the world right now, and next week they head to Philadelphia to take on the undefeated Eagles. They are giving up over 100 yards per game on the ground, they are impressive, but we should know what the Cowboys need to do to win that game.