And just like that the Cowboys slide to 3-4 in a loss to the Washington Redskins. Once again, the offense is unable regularly move down the field and score points. They were plagued with 8 penalties. Much like 2017, when the Cowboys had a successful chunk play, it was called back for either a holding or chop block call.
It all started with the Redskin’s run defense. Washington did a great job stopping Ezekiel Elliott. Their defense loaded the box, and pushed around the Cowboy’s offensive line– even Tyron Smith and Zach Martin. Elliott was unable to find any room to run. He carried the ball 15 times for 33 yards (2.2 ypc). Washington’s Daron Payne and Jonathan Allen may not have filled up the stat sheet, but they straight up bullied the interior of our offensive line. After halftime, the Cowboys tried to run the ball off tackle to eliminate their effect, but their ability to eat up blocks, allowed Washington’s linebackers to beat Elliott to the edge.
Dak Prescott, actually, had one of his better games of the year. He ran for 33 yards and a touchdown on 6 carries (5.5 ypc). One of which, he dove for the first down marker, but was slammed mid-air by DB Greg Stroman. This caused him to be checked out by the medical staff. But, according to Dak and Jason Garret, Dak did not suffer a concussion. Dak threw for 273 yards and 1 long touchdown to rookie Michael Gallup on a stop and go route.
Prescott distributed the ball to 7 different receivers. Although, Dak was not without blemish.
On a fourth and 1 situation, Dak ran a QB sneak, crossed the line, but fumbled the ball. In the last minutes of the game, Prescott fumbled the ball in his own end zone, which was recovered for a Washington touchdown. In the last two offensive possessions, Dak lead the Cowboys to a touchdown and a field goal opportunity. Unfortunately, due to a controversial snap infraction penalty, the field goal was pushed back 5 yards. Brett Maher dinged the ball off of the uprights… “no good”.
On the defensive side, Adrian Peterson ran all over this team. AP ended up with 24 carries for 99 yards. The Redskins linemen were able to reach the second level and create some explosive plays for Peterson and the other running backs.
Demarcus Lawrence lead the team with 7 tackles, 3 of which were for a loss. DLaw did not record a sack, but his presence was surely felt on the field. The duo of Vander-Esch and Smith did not play their best game. On a few of runs, they did not play sound gap defense. However, the main reason for Adrian Peterson was the defensive lines inability to penetrate.
Overall, the defense had another good performance. They only allowed 13 points, which should be enough to allow your offense to win the game. But, as we all know, that is not a guarantee with this Cowboy’s offense.
Going into a bye week after a loss never feels good, especially when you are sub .500 on the year. If this offense is not fixed after the bye, Jerry Jones may make some drastic changes.