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Posted: 10/2/2019 - 0 comment(s) [ Comment ] - 0 trackback(s) [ Trackback ]
Jerry Jones is trying to remain supportive of a Dallas Cowboys offense that has shown only fleeting moments of promise through three weeks of the season.Eight points in the opener and 13 points on Sunday won't be enough to get victories on the road no matter how well the Cowboys play on defense."I do think that we do have the talent and I do think that we have the coaching that can get us on the right track offensively Womens Customized Dallas Cowboys Jerseys ," Jones said. "We will get on the right track offensively, I'm sure."The Cowboys offensive issues 鈥?specifically in the passing game 鈥?were exposed again in their 24-13 loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.Dak Prescott threw for 168 yards and a touchdown, but most of those came in the fourth quarter when the Cowboys were trying to rally. He averaged just 4.9 yards per pass attempt and the Cowboys were rarely able to push the ball downfield against Seattle's secondary. The longest pass play was a 20-yarder to tight end Geoff Swaim. The longest catch by a wide receiver was an 18-yarder to Cole Beasley."We did not do a good enough job of staying ahead of the chains, controlling the line of scrimmage in the passing game like we would have wanted to," Dallas coach Jason Garrett said. "We did a better job of rallying at the end but certainly not good enough."The Cowboys trailed 24-6 before finally finding the end zone on Prescott's shovel pass to Tavon Austin midway through the fourth quarter. It was the one bit of innovation in an otherwise stagnant offensive game plan that should have yielded more success considering how well Elliott was doing on the ground.Elliott rushed for 127 yards on just 16 carries, but even his longest run of the game ended up in disaster for the Cowboys when he fumbled deep in Seattle's end, getting hit from behind by safety Bradley McDougald."Our defense started out really great, and we had them on the field too long and they got worn down. We only scored three points in the first half. We've got to do better than that," Elliott said.Seattle found a formula that worked, getting 102 yards rushing from Chris Carson, two touchdown passes from Russell Wilson and two interceptions from unhappy safety Earl Thomas. Thomas, who wants a contract extension or a trade from Seattle, even bowed to the Cowboys sideline after his second interception with 3:09 remaining ended any hopes of a rally by Dallas.Thomas even acknowledged rumors floating around that he could be traded soon and Sunday could have been his last game in Seattle."I don't know if it was but I had a damn good time and I'll go out like that if I have to," Thomas said.Here's what else to know from both teams moving to 1-2 for the season:UNDER PROTECTION: Wilson had the cleanest pocket to throw from at any point this season. Seattle's offensive line that had allowed 12 sacks in the first two weeks neutralized the Dallas pass rush and allowed Wilson time to find receivers. Wilson was sacked only twice, one of those when he was tackled at the line of scrimmage. For his part , Wilson made smart, decisive decisions on his throws and didn't show the hesitations that had thrown off the timing of Seattle's pass game the first two weeks.INJURY CONCERN: The Cowboys had one significant injury concern to come out of the loss when linebacker Sean Lee aggravated an already troublesome hamstring injury and missed most of the second half. Lee had 11 tackles before being forced to the sideline because of the injury. He had been rotating with rookie Leighton Vander Esch, who also finished with 11 tackles."It feels like the same deal but I have to get (evaluated) and see where I'm at," Lee said.CENTURY MARK: Carson's 102 yards rushing and his touchdown were major milestones for a Seattle run game that's been absent for more than a season.Carson was the first running back to top 100 yards in the regular season since Thomas Rawls rushed for 106 yards in December 2016 against Carolina. Carson's TD run was the first by a Seahawks running back since J.D. McKissic found the end zone on a 31-yard run in Week 4 of the 2017 season. Seattle went 14 games without a running back finding the end zone until Carson bulled his way in with 12:54 remaining.FUN WITH NUMBERS: For the first time since 2010, Dallas did not start 2-1 through three games. The Cowboys started 0-2 in 2010, won their third game, and then dropped five straight. Dallas has also lost three straight to the Seahawks.Dak Prescott’s failures are a symptom of an overall failing offense The Cowboys colossal failure in Seattle this past week didn’t help quarterback Dak Prescott. For the fifth game in a row, and ninth in his last eleven games, Prescott failed to reach 200 passing yards, a universally doable task for all NFL quarterbacks these days. The loss that dropped the team to 1-2 also did no favors for a coaching staff that has come under fire. While both the quarterback and coaching have been critiqued and blamed, it’s only part of the problem. It’s peculiar that more people aren’t talking about how wildly inconsistent the rest of the offense has been in the past three weeks but now is a good time for a reminder.Suspect Protection There is no denying that Prescott has been at fault for a few of the hits he’s taken, he even admitted that much after the Seattle game. There was a popular stat being used to discredit theories about poor line play on Monday. It was determined that the Cowboys quarterback has the third-highest amount of time to throw at 2.99 seconds. Though that may be true, there was also a noticeable coincidence with that stat and another too:QuarterbackThrow Time (Rank)Sacks (Rank)Five of the Top-10 quarterbacks with the most time to throw are also in the Top-10 of most sacked quarterbacks on the season. Of those five, Deshaun Watson and Tyrod Taylor are the only two with clear WR1’s in reputation and stats. No other quarterback even has a receiver in the Top-30. Last week’s opposing QB Russell Wilson, the most-sacked QB in the league Dallas Cowboys T-Shirt , ranks 13th with 2.78 seconds to throw. Wilson’s tight ends had to chip DeMarcus Lawrence all game long to avoid another six-sack nightmare. Dak is on pace to get sacked 59 times, which would tie Tony Eason at ninth all-time for single season sacks taken. Sacks are one measurement but don’t forget QB hits. Prescott took 81 last season, he’s already been hit 22 times in three games. Without question, his timing, ball-placement, pocket awareness, and mechanics have all been wildly inconsistent but we can’t say protection hasn’t been a problem. Are we possibly guilty of downplaying the absence of Travis Frederick, who may be the best center in football? It’s not a slight to Joe Looney, who hasn’t been a liability but he’s nowhere near the level of the All-Pro he’s subbing for. Connor Williams has been beat badly at times but he is a rookie learning on the job. The real problem with this line right now is that they are far more comfortable with run-blocking than they are in pass protection. Ezekiel Elliott had costly mistakes in Seattle but he ran for 127 yards and almost eight yards per carry. The team basically could run the ball at will but it didn’t matter and that’s troubling when it’s the formula for the offense. They couldn’t protect the quarterback against a Seahawks pass rush that ranked 29th in sacks before the game.Tyron Smith just had an uncharacteristically bad performance with Frank Clark on Sunday. La’el Collins has struggled in his second season at right tackle as well. In three games, Smith and Collins have combined for seven penalties that have hurt potential drives. You can live with mistakes made by Looney or Williams. However, this team has to hang their hats on this offensive line and especially Tyron, Collins, and Zack Martin. Right now, this unit is struggling on an offense that is dependent upon them for success.When the offense surrendered six sacks one week, zero the next Dallas Cowboys Hats , then five against a defense that could manage only three in two previous games, you got problems. That’s instability by definition and plays its role in erratic play from the quarterback. What’s the plan at receiver because no plan isn’t workingThe Cowboys made a lot of big-time decisions in the offseason to put pass catchers around Dak Prescott that would fit his “spread the ball” style. They took hard stances due to last year’s receivers not getting separation or yards after catch. So far, it looks as though every concern about an offense without any outside threats has come true.Dak’s ball placement is one thing but even when he throws a nice ball, it’s getting dropped, tipped, flipped, and intercepted if Earl Thomas is near. As sure as it is that Dak is missing open targets, his guys aren’t doing him any favors. According to Next Gen Stats, 2.77 yards of separation is average for NFL receivers and tight ends are almost always well over that mark. The Cowboys only had four pass catchers even qualify to be charted with targets being so low:PlayerAvg CushAvg SepTarg Air YdsTargRec/TDCatch %YAC/RecEYACEYAC +/-So, separation and cushion are related which is why tight ends usually have higher numbers in both. Geoff Swaim is getting four yards of separation because often the closest defender is five yards away. Also, receivers can have below the 2.77 average and still be very successful but those that do usually have good yards after catch numbers. That’s what’s so concerning about the Cowboys. All four qualifiers were below their expected YAC when the ball was thrown. Now, here’s the separation stats for the Cowboys in each game:NFL Sep. Avg (2.77)SeahawksGiantsPanthersFirst, look how much separation the Cowboys were getting in the Seahawks game in contrast to week’s one and two. The reason those separation numbers are so high is because the Seahawks weren’t concerned with them, they were too busy harassing Prescott. Also, look at how bad things have been for Michael Gallup Dallas Cowboys Womens Hoodie , he’s had drops but also caused one of Dak’s two interceptions on the day. As down as these charts might be on these receivers, they are related to the suspect protection, playcalling, and quarterback play over these three games. Also, where’s Tavon Austin? He’s done more with two receptions than anyone else has with four times the amount. Blake Jarwin has played a higher percentage of the offensive snaps and doesn’t have a single catch. More than anything these charts tell you that the Cowboys just don’t have much of a plan with these guys. Cole Beasley and Geoff Swaim are the pass catchers with the highest snap percentages. The Cowboys have made Allen Hurns an exclusive slant route runner, he’s not offering much after the catch. Gallup may be making mistakes but he and Tavon are your two most explosive receivers playing a combined average of 36% of the snaps. The only way for the rookie to improve is to give him more opportunities. There is no respect from opponents to these receivers because they know:A.) They will rarely have the QB throw 20+ yards off the line of scrimmage B.) Even if they do throw 20+ yards off the line, they are 1-4 on those throwsC.) Of the two threats that can beat us in Elliott or Tavon, one will rarely see the field D.) Corners can sit in their zones on these receivers, we can send the hounds at the QBThe passing game is broken therefore the offense is broken too. They can be a run-first team but these struggles they have had make them a run-only team. When their best players have games like they just did, there is no chance for success at all. These coaches can be creative but they can’t commit to staying there. The players can execute the plays but they have a tendency to self-sabotage. It’s on the coaches to get their players prepared to play, it’s on the players to execute the gameplan. Right now, the gameplan has been completely pedestrian and the players have been atrocious at carrying it out. It’s clear that this offense is like any failing relationship, it can’t succeed without trust and commitment. Those are two things that everyone involved seems to be really short on at the moment.
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