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SEA 38, DAL 31: Elliott, Cowboys Come Up Short and Fall to 1-2

The struggles continued for the Dallas Cowboys today as they fell on the road 38-31 to the Seattle Seahawks today. The loss drops them to 1-2 on the year, with last week’s miraculous comeback the only thing preventing Mike McCarthy from being winless as head coach.

Dak Prescott threw for 472 yards and three touchdowns but also had two interceptions and a lost fumble. He got no help from the running game today; Ezekiel Elliott was almost completely shut down with only 34 rushing yards on 14 carries. Zeke did have one short-yardage touchdown but was otherwise a non-factor.

The Cowboys had a series of bad plays early which set an ugly tone. Tony Pollard muffed a kickoff that put Dallas on their own 1-yard line and then Elliott slipped in the endzone to cause a safety. They also had two missed extra points from Greg Zuerlein today, though one of those was blocked.

While the misfires and mistakes never allowed today’s game to get as out of hand as last week’s, Seattle is a better team than the Falcons and did enough to win. The early Dallas mistakes allowed Wilson to put up points early and he finished the day with five touchdown passes and 315 yrds.

Wilson stayed effective despite solid pressure from the Cowboys’ defense, highlighted by three sacks from Aldon Smith. But there were multiple coverage breakdowns which made Dallas’ secondary look fairly inept, and particularly at safety.

With Jamal Adams playing for the other team, and Seattle being where Earl Thomas once lived, it certainly made the poor safety play stand out.

Still, despite it all, the Cowboys were marching the field on the final drive with a chance to tie. Prescott managed to get away from a near sack in the final seconds and lobbed a pass to the endzone that was picked off. Dallas may have been able to run one more play without that turnover, but it would have been a similar jump-ball scenario at that point.

If they can clean up the sloppy stuff and stop putting themselves in holes, this Cowboys team is clearly good enough to compete with most teams. Some of what they’ve done this year is actually impressive given all their injuries.

But nobody is giving them a medical exemption into the playoffs at the end of the year. Dallas has to figure some things out quickly and may need to make some phone calls to certain free agents if they want improvement.

Other Notes

  • An unlikely standout today was WR Cedrick Wilson, who scored twice and had five catches for 107 yards. Both of his scores came off nice runs after the catch.
  • Michael Gallup was the other star receiver today with six catches for 138 yards and a TD of his own. Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb were both active as well but their numbers were a bit behind Gallup and Wilson.
  • Zack Martin played the second half at right tackle after Terence Steele was benched for poor performance. Joe Looney slid to guard and Tyler Biadasz came in at center. While Martin performed well, we’re happy that one or both of Tyron Smith and La’el Collins should be back next week.
  • Dak Prescott’s first-half interception was his first of 2020 and the first he’s thrown since the Thanksgiving game last season.
  • Despite their early-season woes, Dallas remains tied for first place in the atrocious NFC East. Washington also lost today to drop to 1-2, the Giants are 0-3, and the Eagles tied with the Bengals to go to 0-2-1 on the year.
  • The Cowboys return home next week to host the 2-1 Cleveland Browns, who are coming off a victory over the Football Team today.

What do you think?

Jess Haynie

Written by Jess Haynie

Cowboys fan since 1992, blogger since 2011. Bringing you the objectivity of an outside perspective with the passion of a die-hard fan. I love to talk to my readers, so please comment on any article and I'll be sure to respond!

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  1. Very sloppy play, which again points to coaching. Offense will not consistent and relies on desperation plays when they’re down. We’re missing a lot of pieces on both sides, but there’s a lot of X and O gaps happening. They better clean this up quick

  2. On the plus side, loved the way we fought back to take the lead. Ced Wilson really showed he may have what it takes to be a playmaker. Gallup and Lamb both play outstandingly. Prescott made some really nice throws and fought till the end, but two INTs and a lost fumble tempered his 472 yds and three TD passes somewhat. However, the second INT was a desperation heave.

    The negatives, Zeke could not get going. Give credit there to Seahawk D. He also uncharactiriscally dropped some passes. The secondary was burned early, but their credit, tightened up somewhat later in the game, but Wilson’s 5 TD passes, kind of says it all. Getting into a shootout with Wilson usually does not end up well. We were banged up, but so were Seahawks. We had the chance with that final drive. Give Seahawks credit, they made the plays to win the game, we didn’t. And don’t forget the Diggs play, that cost them a TD.

    BTW, thought T Hill was dirty, twisted the running back’s ankle way too long and injuring him unnecessarily. Did anyone else notice that?

    Hate to say it, but if Falcons jump on that inside kick as they should have, we would be 0-3. Commented previously, thought this may be one of our toughest games of the year. Obviously we have to start playing better and real quick. We are in first place in a really bad division, so nothing to be proud of. Hard to figure this team out. You see flashes of a really good team, but then ugly lapses appear. Some may say injuries are a big part of their woes, but as I always say, every team gets them. All that being said, we were competitive against one of the strongest teams and toughest QBs in the league, and in the game till the end.

  3. This season especially was always going to be tough for new coaches when you factor in no normal offseason. I think we are definetely hitting our stride offensively. Dak is lighting it up. Even though he had 2 ints I won’t fault the last one as it was a last minute heave after he broke a sack. About the only dark spot is our online is atrocious. We really need to consider finding Smiths replacement. But the defense man it needs work and fast. No way McCarthy and Jerry should be OK with that. Aside from Trevon Diggs, everyone is playing like trash out there. Jerry needs to at least consider a call to Earl Thomas after that.

  4. Agree this a team that never quits. A team that seems capable of beating or losing to just about every team out there. I’m optimistic we will see improvement as we move along . The DL did get pressure on Wilson but his elusiveness and ability to throw on the run is otherworldly. Reminds me of an in his prime A Rodgers. He also can and does run for 1st downs and manages to smartly avoid the big hits.

    The secondary besides Diggs is really bad. Not sure if its scheme/ lack of talent or that they haven’t played together long enuf but they are getting beat badly. Seahawks and Rams were a bad matchup for us so early in the season as this coaching staff and players are trying to establish continuity. Would still like to see this team at semi full strength to see what they can do.

    Maybe I’m an optimist but I see alot to like about this team. I think we’ll be playing our best ball towards the end of the yr. And staying with that optimistic thread we could very well be 3-0 too. We need to play a cleaner game eliminate the mental errors and penalties and we’ll be in every game. Special teams sucked too and this Greg the Leg guy has me worried. He looks real shaky. The last thing we need is a kicker losing games for us.

    Dak did play well…but not good enough. He missed a few key throws and needs to show he can make the plays with the game on the line. ZEKE looked bad to me. What an uninspired performance from him. I expected (and we needed) a big game from him.

  5. I wish your team lots of luck with Mike McCarthy (MM). As a Packers fan who had to endure the poor coaching of MM for years, I want to let you know what’s in store for you.

    (1) MM will never focus on defense
    (2) MM will keep his head buried in his “Play placemat” for the entire game, even when you’re not on offense.
    (3) MM will coach conservatively when he should be aggressive and he’ll coach aggressively when he should be conservative.
    (4) MM will fall back on an offensive scheme that is over a decade old.
    (5) Your receivers will soon be unable to get open because MM’s scheme is well known by DC’s around the league
    (6) MM will say he wants to run, but he’ll expect Dax to throw over 40x’s a game while your best running back is effectively shut out of the offense
    (7) Your team will win a few nail biters that will give you hope, but eventually it will fade into more and more losses
    (8) MM will end promising NFL careers because he doesn’t know how to utilize or where to utilize the best talent you have on your team
    (9) MM will give the standard Bulls**t talk after a loss. “Excuse, excuse, excuse… then he’ll say he takes full responsibility.”
    (10) You’ll start to wonder why your team cannot win with all the good players you have…. MM will effectively neutralize your team’s ability to win because he is a bad coach.

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