The 2021 Cowboys were 6-1 after their bye week, then proceeded to go 6-4 the last half and most unfortunately, 0-1 in their lone playoff game last year. Another disappointing year that started with such promise.
Below are some very practical ways the Cowboys need to improve to take the next step toward competing once again for a championship:
- Defend the home field– the Cowboys are a mediocre 58-46 since moving into AT&T stayjum. In the playoffs, we are 3-2 at AT&T since it opened. Playing better at home is good sign of improvement overall.
- Play better on Turkey Day– the Cowboys are 3-7 in their last ten Thanksgiving Day games, all at home. That used to be a real advantage to have that game at home but the Cowboys have squandered it 70% of the time the last decade.
- Get more mental and physical toughness- I was stunned last year by how much our players and coaches whined publicly about officiating. That is a loser mentality. Yes, they got screwed by some calls- happens to everyone. Then they let teams like the broncos and 49ers just physically dominate them at the LOS. Teams that win in the playoffs can overcome adversity. It requires mental toughness to fight through it.
- Less stupid penalties- remember all the stupid pre-snap penalties in the 49er playoff game last year? Randy Gregory’s stupid holding call on 3rd down when the Cowboys had stopped them? More than half of Connor Williams’ league leading holding penalties occurred on 3rd down. Drive killers. You can’t win in the playoffs being stupid.
- Stop the run- if you get dominated by the opposing OL in the running game you have no chance to win in the playoffs. The Cowboys have been an easy team to run on for most of the last decade. At least they have somewhat addressed that in the draft the last two years. We need to see improvement there to get more competitive when it matters most.
Those are just a few. What else?