Costly Turnovers Doom Cowboys in Saints Loss
The Dallas Cowboys are 3-1 on the season after losing a game that could have been won by the visitors in New Orleans but for the cardinal sin being committed twice! Two of the most sure-handed Cowboys, tight end Jason Witten and running back Zeke Elliott were ruled to have fumbled the football after first down yardage was acquired on the respective plays. Credit the New Orleans Saints for holding Dallas to a season-low 10 points after the Saints had been giving up almost 30 points a game on average through three games.
The only touchdown of the game was scored by Dallas in the third quarter and that plus was offset by Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper being called for two, yes two offensive pass interference calls in one game. This statistic along with Witten and Elliott fumbling in the same game is weird and very uncharacteristic. My thought was that Elliott’s elbow was down prior to the ball coming loose on a fourth down play that Zeke gained enough yardage to move the chains and pick up a first down.
The defense for the Cowboys did not allow the Saints to score a touchdown however 4 field goals was enough with one occurring when seemingly time should have expired. However, time appeared to stand still in the Superdome long enough for 2 seconds to remain on the game clock before halftime which allowed Will Lutz to kick a 19-yard field goal. This clock management caught the ire of head coach Jason Garrett who most seemingly believes to be stoic and the NFL’s best clapper into a highly irritated and agitated leader of a team attempting to stay undefeated.
The Dallas offense did not reach its season scoring average during this game and the two costly turnovers certainly contributed to opportunities lost on the scoreboard. Dak Prescott may have had a completely different game if passes would have been caught and offensive drives not halted by fumbles. Left tackle Tyron Smith will miss the Green Bay game after his ankle was rolled up on by Dak during a pass play. Cam Fleming, a quite capable replacement, who has started for the Patriots and won a Super Bowl should fill in admirably.
A good effort won’t beat a good team on the road or even at home. Turnovers and penalties, like a suspect roughing the passer call on Demarcus Lawrence when he appeared to be pushed into quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, should be eliminated or reduced at a minimum. This game against the Saints wasn’t a season-ending fail even though the Cowboys failed to win a winnable game. The next step doesn’t get easier as Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers come to AT&T stadium this week to play the Cowboys after they lost last Thursday to the Philadelphia Eagles.