Week 15 was a successful one for the Dallas Cowboys as they defeated the New York Giants 21-6 for their third consecutive win, and with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Arizona Cardinals suffering losses, Dallas climbed to the two seed in the NFC. However, there was an individual milestone achieved by one of the Cowboys' best defenders.
The ball-hawking skills of Cornerback Trevon Diggs have been on full display in 2021. He entered Sunday's game with a league-leading nine interceptions. With just over eight minutes left in the fourth quarter, Diggs put himself in the history books by grabbing his 10th interception of the season, tying Hall of Famer Mel Renfro (1969) for the second-most in a single season in Cowboys history.
TREVON DIGGS HAS DONE IT AGAIN! 🔥
10 picks on the season! GO OFF @TrevonDiggs
Diggs had to wait to see if the interception stood seeing as the ball was ripped out of his hands after he hit the turf. It was ruled an incomplete pass initially but Cowboys Head Coach Mike McCarthy tossed the challenge flag, and it was determined that Diggs completed the process of the catch. Not only did it stop the Giants from making it a one-score game, but it also put the exclamation point on a goal Diggs had before the season which was to get 10 interceptions.
“I'm happy I reached it, but I didn't know that I was going to reach it,” Diggs said. “It's just a blessing and I'm truly just happy that I can represent the Star, represent my team and go out there and give it all I've got.”
Diggs isn't satisfied though as he looks to reach an even higher level of production.
“I've got to set new goals now,” Diggs said. “I'm going to set another one and see if I can accomplish that. But as long as I do what I do on the field, come to the game, come to work, come ready to play, the sky's the limit.”
With three games left in the season, Diggs has a great chance to tie the Cowboys' franchise record of 11 interceptions set by Everson Walls in 1981. He'll need to revert to the pace he had at the beginning of the season when he had an interception in each of the first six games to reach the record of 14 set by “Night Train” Lane in 1952.
In just 26 NFL games, Diggs has hauled in 13 interceptions which is an incredible rate when it comes to taking the ball away. What makes it even more impressive is the fact that his first interception didn't come until Week 8 of last season meaning he's grabbed his 13 interceptions over the last 19 games.
The Cowboys have been playing lights out on defense during their current three-game win streak. They have allowed just 14.3 points per game and have tallied 12 turnovers. With three interceptions against the Giants, the Cowboys pushed their league-leading total to 23 and it helped them draw even with Indianapolis Colts for the most turnovers forced this season with 31.
When coupling that with the Cowboys being the top third-down defense in the league by only allowing conversions 31.8% of the time, Dallas has a case for being the best defense in the NFL, right? Diggs thinks so.
“We're the best defense for sure,” Diggs said.
In just his second season, Diggs has established himself as the NFL's top ballhawk on defense and is one of the leading candidates for Defensive Player of the Year in 2021.