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The Cowboys Are For Real: What’s Made 2016 Different?

Kevin Brady

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Cowboys Headlines -  92

Sunday's scene was all too familiar for Dallas Cowboys fans.

Missing Tony Romo, Dez Bryant, Orlando Scandrick, La'el Collins, and Tyron Smith the Cowboys fell into a 14-0 hole almost immediately. The 49ers were dominating, and for the first time this year these young Cowboys were truly being tested on the road.

Sure, they needed to win a close one in Washington just two weeks ago, but this game felt different. The Cowboys were on the brink, about to be blown off the field and embarrassed by a team which we had all penciled in as a win prior to the season.

The 2015 Dallas Cowboys would have folded.

Without a true leader to look to at the quarterback position, the 2015 Cowboys offense would have sputtered. Without a true play-maker in the backfield like Ezekiel Elliott, the 2015 Cowboys would not have been able to run through loaded boxes. Without the new and improved Morris Claiborne, and clear leadership on the defensive side, the 2015 Cowboys defense would have been shredded.

Sunday's game would have been ugly. As fans, we would be left to count down the weeks until Tony Romo returned, hoping that the Cowboys weren't too far behind the Giants or the Eagles so that our savior would have a chance to do some saving.

But the 2016 Dallas Cowboys are different.

Down two scores on the road, rookie quarterback Dak Prescott did not blink. He stood in the pocket, trusted his recievers, and overcame every bit of adversity and poor play he faced in the first quarter.

Dak Prescott showed he is a leader, and the future quarterback of this franchise.

Without two-thirds of the preseason triplets, rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott played his best game yet. Pleading and begging for more carries, Elliott put the offense on his shoulders at times, and carried the load necessary of the number four overall pick.

Cowboys Headlines - The Cowboys Are For Real: What's Made 2016 Different?

SANTA CLARA, CA - OCTOBER 02: Ezekiel Elliott #21 of the Dallas Cowboys rushes the ball against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium on October 2, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Defensively, rookie Anthony Brown and Morris Claiborne made up for the absence of Orlando Scandrick. Five years in Mo has finally reached the potential the Cowboys believed he had when they traded up to draft him, and has he come up big every single week when needed.

As the week progresses we will analyze the film, point out the negative which needs to be corrected, and preview the Cowboys next opponent who may pose the biggest problems of any team they've faced thus far.

But for now, let's enjoy this win. Because as little as one year ago, the Dallas Cowboys would not have won this game.

Not without Romo. Not without Dez. This year, things are different, and the Cowboys are for real.



Die-hard Cowboys fan from the Northeast, so you know I am here to defend the 'boys whenever necessary. Began writing for a WordPress Cowboys Blog, and have been with ITS since 2016.

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BREAKING: Cowboys Sign Ex-Packers WR Randall Cobb

Brian Martin

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BREAKING: Cowboys Sign Ex-Packers WR Randall Cobb

According to multiple sources, the Dallas Cowboys have signed former Green Bay Packers Wide Receiver Randall Cobb to a one-year deal to help bolster their depth at the WR position and potentially become Cole Beasley's replacement.

Adam Schefter on Twitter

Cowboys are giving former Packers' WR Randall Cobb a one-year, $5 million deal, per source. https://t.co/8KWFPjSP8T

The Dallas Cowboys met with Randall Cobb earlier this week, but he eventually left Dallas without a contract. He must've had a change of heart or just needed time to ponder the Cowboys offer, but regardless of what transpired in that short time he is now part of America's Team.

During his time with the Packers, Cobb accumulated 470 receptions for 5,524 receiving yards and 41 touchdowns. The eight-year veteran will now be expected to replace some of Cole Beasley's production out of the slot for the Dallas Cowboys.

After years of watching Beasley as the Cowboys slot WR, it will be really interesting to see Randall Cobb in that role. He's not as quick twitched as No. 11, but can be just as dangerous due to his ability to be more of a down the field receiver. He also brings added value in the return game and could compete with Tavon Austin to become the return specialist.

This could mean the Cowboys forgo drafting a wide receiver early in the 2019 NFL Draft, but I wouldn't put it past them. Regardless of what happens, this is an excellent addition.

Welcome to Cowboys Nation Randall Cobb!



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REPORT: Dallas Cowboys Re-sign Long Snapper L.P. Ladouceur

Jess Haynie

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L.P. Ladouceur

L.P. Ladouceur is returning for his 15th season as the Cowboys' long snapper. The veteran free agent was re-signed by Dalals today to a one-year deal.

Thanks to Jason Witten's one-year sabbatical with Monday Night Football, Ladouceur has now been with the Cowboys for more consecutive seasons than any current player. He just turned 38 last week, but Louis-Philippe remains one of the top long snappers in football.

Todd Archer on Twitter

The Cowboys have signed long-snapper L.P. Ladouceur to a one-year deal worth $1.03 million and $90,000 in bonus money, but he will count $735,000 against the cap. This will be Ladouceur's 15th season with the Cowboys, tying Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Mark... https://t.co/2iDsi6RX7e

Retaining Ladouceur is an underrated move for the Cowboys given their situation at kicker.

Brett Maher was only 80% accurate overall on field goals last year. The team could be considering an upgrade in free agency.

Whether they bring Maher back or try someone new, having a long snapper with Ladouceur's performance perfection will make things much easier for them.



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REPORT: Cowboys Negotiating Trade with Dolphins for DE Robert Quinn

Jess Haynie

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Robert Quinn

According to a report just minutes ago, the Dallas Cowboys are visiting with Miami Dolphins' Defensive End Robert Quinn today as part of a possible trade. Miami is looking for a trade partner to try to get something back for Quinn before making him a salary cap casualty.

Quinn is in the final year of his contract and is set to count $12.9 million against the Dolphins' salary cap. Most of that is his base salary of $11.8 million, which Miami is reportedly willing to pay part of to help facilitate a trade.

Tom Pelissero on Twitter

Robert Quinn was spotted today on his way to visit the #Cowboys, who are in trade talks with the #Dolphins for the veteran DE, sources say. Quinn would need to agree to any deal. So, this is another step in the process, with a Dallas team that obviously needs pass rush.

The Cowboys need DE help with DeMarcus Lawrence's contract still unresolved and Randy Gregory now indefinitely suspended for another drug policy violation. They signed Kerry Hyder from the Lions yesterday, but he isn't a proven commodity like Quinn.

Turning 29 in May, Robert Quinn is a two-time Pro Bowler and former first-round pick of the Rams. He hasn't had the same production in recent years but still had 6.5 sacks for Miami in 2018 and 8.5 the prior year with Los Angeles.

Ever the bargain shoppers these days, Dallas is probably hoping to get Quinn for late-round draft pick or perhaps a pick swap.



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