Hear me out:
1) Ala thread title, sometimes you just lay an egg all around. Two special teams gaffes, sloppy play throughout, and one of Dak’s worse games as a pro. This and Tampa have been the only two games all year we fell completely flat all game with no bounce back. Ish happens, every team has one or two of those a season.
2) You could also lump the Titans game into this but we clearly and obviously ran a vanilla gameplan on both sides of the ball. Plenty of first down runs up the gut, very few bootlegs and rollouts, and very little creativity with route concepts (a whole lotta curls and comebacks). With backups getting a shot on defense, we made simple calls to see where those guys were at.
3) I think the 27 year drought has made some of us a bit unrealistic but this isn’t only true to our fanbase. Fans all over are super hypercritical these days. Every team this year has had a stinker or two, everyone. This team has either controlled or been right there in all but two games this year. Players are human and they have off-days and sometimes in an 18 week season a team will not bring the energy and get beat bad. Happens to all the teams. Philly versus Washington is a great example.
4) That game wasn’t the 2021 Broncos game. Washington didn’t figure anything out. They didn’t expose weaknesses or provide a blueprint, we just had a sorry game. In 2018 we layed an egg versus Indy and still went and won a playoff game and were a 4th down stop away from having a chance to tie the Divisional game. Washington didn’t do anything new or try new wrinkles, we just sucked and that happens from time to time.
We overreact to each game way too much. Win big and we are elite and lose and we are the same old Cowboys. Reality is somewhere in the middle. Even if we had won 30-10 yesterday, would you really feel any different about the team?
We know who we are regardless of that game. We are a good but not great team and probably about the 3rd best in the NFC. At our best we can beat anyone, and at our worse we could lose to anyone. The team is consistently inconsistent, and that is the narrative regardless of how yesterday had went. Doesn’t matter what happened in that game, either way we need to be the Dr. Jekyll version of our team for 3 games and not the Mr. Hyde version. Had we won that game yesterday, is anyone any more confident about our consistency? I think not.
The loss has changed nothing for me. I kinda got the vibe about halfway into that game that it was just going to be one of those days. Was not really pissed after the game because sometimes you have a day where nothing goes right and that’s what happened. Regardless of if we won or lost, the feeling is still the same with this team. What version of this team shows up in the postseason? No amount of week 18 victories or losses in seemingly meaningless games would have changed that.
Silver lining is that coming off of an embarrassing loss, this team usually comes out much better. Coming off a comfortable win, this team has the propensity to be sluggish. I’d much rather them have a bad taste in their mouth to end the season than them do what they did to Philly’s backups last year and have them smelling themselves. I think we see a much better outing versus Tampa. Much rather them lay an egg week 18 than in the playoffs.
If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading my think piece lol.