The Dallas Cowboys could do no wrong in a dominate 44-21 win over the Los Angeles Rams moving to 7-7 on the season while keeping playoff hopes alive for another week. Here are the four biggest takeaways from tonight’s win.
1. Showing up against the big boys
For the first time all season, the Cowboys finally played a complete game against a team with a winning record. Prior to tonight’s win, they were 0-6 against teams .500 or better meaning their six previous wins came against teams with losing records. This was a much-needed win in more ways than one as it makes next weeks matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles a winner take all for the division and gives them much needed positive momentum heading into the game.
2. Sean Lee
The stalwart linebacker returned with a vengeance after battling injuries notching four tackles, one sack and an interception that set up a touchdown. With Leighton Vander Esch missing his fourth straight game with a neck injury Lee’s return was big and his play was even bigger. He gave a much-needed boost to struggling defense that notched two sacks and held the Rams to just three first-half rushing yards. On the day the Rams mustered up 289 yards and just 22 rushing yards. With the Eagles offense in high gear the past two weeks a similar performance from Lee and Co. is needed.
3. Offense Shines
Coming into the game the offense shined against weaker foes and struggled against anybody with an ounce of a defense. The offense that averaged nearly 35 points per game in their six previous wins mustered roughly 16ppg in their seven losses, six of which had winning records. After a rough start, the Cowboys got going with a beautiful one-handed tight end Jason Witten touchdown catch and never looked back. On the day the offense rolled up 476 yards and 25 first downs. The running game looked especially strong as both Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard had great days each topping 100 yards. Elliott notched 117 yards and two touchdowns on the ground while adding 43 yards receiving. For his part, Pollard had 131 yards and a touchdown on the ground and 12 yards receiving. A similar performance is needed next week.
4. Jason Garrett
The second-longest tenured coach in franchise history has had a tough time this season trying to make it to year 11. While there is no guarantee that a division title and wild card birth will save his job it’s good to see him still coaching and doing his best to keep the locker room together in a trying time for the future of the franchise. No matter if you like him or not you have to give him credit for having his team ready for tonight’s game and keeping their playoff hopes alive.