When the Cowboys finish battling the Washington Commanders in Week 18, they will officially wrap up their 2022-2023 regular season. While this piece may be too premature since they have one more game – I still wanted to look at where I was right or wrong on the predictions I wrote about this season.
As we all saw, there were a lot of things that happened this season. So that's why I thought it would be interesting to see how close, far, or spot-on I was with the content I wrote for you all this year.
Whatever the outcome is, I want to thank you all for not only reading my content — but also for supporting the whole Inside the Star team.
Talking ball and about the Cowboys with everyone is always a blast.
So, to ease your curiosity, check out the rest of the piece below.
“Player Awards: Predicting the Team's MVP, Breakout Player, and More.”
Before the season started, I wrote about who I thought would be the team's MVP, Breakout Player, Rookie Standout, and Biggest Sleeper. For MVP, I penciled in DE Micah Parsons.
A top-tier player in the NFL and arguably the team's best player — I was confident that he would take that next leap to an even higher level of stardom. Throughout this season, he has made countless plays and is in the running for DPOY.
For me, he is the star of their defense. Although people have said he hasn't played to “elite standards” lately – I'm voting that I was right on with this pick.
An argument could be made for QB Dak Prescott. But Parsons is a transcendent talent, and he is the heart and soul of the defense.
For Breakout Player, I chose RB Tony Pollard. We saw Pollard as a dual-threat running back last year, and I felt the team would benefit if they used him more this season.
Well, 988 rushing and 371 receiving yards later, it's hard to argue that he wasn't this year's breakout player. Pollard showed the franchise that he can be a number-one back, and once the off-season hits – it will be interesting if the team opts to re-sign him.
Another right-on pick.
Shifting to Rookie Standout, I predicted DE Sam Williams. I loved Williams coming out of Ole Miss and felt he could seamlessly replace former Cowboys DE Randy Gregory. At the beginning of the season, he started slow and didn't get many snaps – which swayed my initial choice a bit.
However, after some run, you saw the explosiveness and talent from the former Ole Miss DE — but I have to admit he doesn't garner the Rookie Standout award. Williams has a bright future – but I was wrong.
If I had to choose a rookie standout now, my choice would likely be between Tyler Smith or DaRon Bland.
Lastly, I chose S Israel Mukuamu for the Biggest Sleeper. He showed his skills off in the preseason, and it felt like he would earn more snaps because of the high level of play.
However, he only got limited snaps since Jayron Kearse, Donovan Wilson, and Malik Hooker performed well. Am I wrong again? Yes. But that doesn't mean Mukuamu is a bad player, as he has shown flashes through games.
If I had to pick a player for Biggest Sleeper, I'm likely picking Bland.
Hot Takes Record Through the Season
In certain weeks, I crafted three hot takes for the game. Whether it was picking a player to ball out or picking if the Cowboys win or lose – I thought it was a fun way to test my “luck” and knowledge for the game.
In one of my pieces, I remember I told readers that I would accumulate my record of all my hot takes at the end of the year to see how I ended up. So without further ado, my record was 5-18. And to clarify to readers, that was how many I got correct.
To me, it's hilarious that I got only five right as most of my hot takes had data to back them up. But I guess I can't win them all.
Out of all the takes, I would say my favorite was when I said the Cowboys-Colts game would be over by the 3rd quarter because the game was close at one point.
“3 bold predictions for the Cowboys second half of the season.”
The last predictions piece I crafted was about the Cowboys second half of the season. At the time, the Boys were 6-2 and were heading into Lambeau Field to face the Green Bay Packers.
Also, they were coming off a bye. So, I figured it was appropriate at the time to write about their second half of the season.
The three predictions I had were the Cowboys finishing with 14 wins, Parsons breaking the franchise single-season sack record, and WR KaVontae Turpin returning a kickoff for a touchdown.
Starting with their win total, I saw the team having one of the easiest rest-of-season schedules, so it made sense that they could rack up several victories on their way to finishing the year with 14 wins.
Well, I was wrong, as they dropped some games they shouldn't have but finishing with potentially 13 wins isn't bad. (If they don't slip up against Washington next week.)
Sliding to Parsons, at the time, he was one of the hottest defenders in the league and racking up sacks galore.
While he has slowed down recently and commented about the difficulty of getting a sack — it's likely he doesn't break the single-season sack record as he only has 13. Unless he gets eight sacks against the Commanders next week, I'm not optimistic.
Lastly, I was high on Turpin sniffing the end zone eventually. The last time he scored a touchdown in the return game was in the preseason, so I figured it was a matter of time before it would happen again.
While there is one more chance for him to house a kick or punt, my prediction is in jeopardy. However, if he were to make it happen in the punt or kickoff game, it would be the first time that the Boys get a return touchdown since 2016 (punt) and 2021 (kickoff).
Also, I would be right about another prediction.