Cowboys aren’t second guessing the play calling late, but everyone else is

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Kellen Moore was touted as an offensive genius three games into the season. Now?

Everyone is second guessing the Cowboys’ offensive coordinator after the play calling at the end of a 28-24 loss to the Vikings. Everyone, that is, except owner Jerry Jones, head coach Jason Garrett and the Cowboys players.

“No, I’m not going to get into [second guessing the play calling],” Jones said. “Since it didn’t work, we’d all like to have that back.”

The Cowboys had second-and-two from the Minnesota 11 with 1:33 remaining. They ran Ezekiel Elliott up the middle despite struggles running the ball all night. The Vikings stuffed him at the line of scrimmage.

“I’m not going to question the play calling,” quarterback Dak Prescott said. “There were opportunities.”

On third-and-two, the Cowboys had a run-pass option. Prescott flipped it to Elliott, who lost 3 yards.

“Just an RPO. It was a good read,” Elliott said. “There really wasn’t anywhere to go.”

On fourth-and-five, Prescott tried to throw it to Elliott, who was tightly covered by Eric Kendricks. The ball fell incomplete, ending the Cowboys’ last best chance to win.

“I don’t want to get into all the details of the play, but there were a number of different options on the play based on what they play,” Garrett said. “They heat you up, you’ve got some answers. They play certain kinds of zones, you have some answers. You play man-to-man, you have some answers. We wanted to give Dak some different options, depending on what they were going to play in some critical situations.”

Garrett was asked the thought process of the final three play calls.

“Obviously, we were trying to score a touchdown,” Garrett said. “We got into a second-and-short situation, and we tried to run it a couple of times just to get the first down, and they did a good job defending the runs and it went to a fourth-down situation, and we just weren’t able to convert.”

The Cowboys gained 50 net rushing yards. Elliott gained 47 yards on 20 carries. The Cowboys’ longest run of the night was a 7-yarder by Tavon Austin.

And, for only the third time in team history, the Cowboys failed to pick up a rushing first down.

“It’s definitely frustrating, but they’re a pro team, too,” Elliott said. “They did a good job bottling up the run. They were better than us.”

20 responses to “Cowboys aren’t second guessing the play calling late, but everyone else is

  1. .
    2nd guessing it???
    I was speechless they even tried it, aka why did they try to run, whoever made that decision should be fired…
    but I cant stand this team and this is what they do… bad play calls when the pressure is on…

  2. Not a fan of either team but people are always clamoring to get the ball into their best players hands and that’s what they did . This is 100% on Elliott. He’s always doing that feed me sign and they did.

  3. No screens, no Pollard, no Prescott runs, no creativity down the stretch , on 2 and 3rd down of the most important drive of the the game they call two runs to the same side that had not given them anything all night. I’m a cowboys fan, but not a cowboys apologizst. Some harp about execution, but coaches have to give players a change can’t keep banging your head against the wall and expected to fall, gotta bring out a chisel and hammer some times to make it easier. I had hope but not expectations for the team as long as Garret remains coach that is all I’ll ever have. Can’t waste the talent on this team on a mediocre coach like him. To many years down the tubes already

  4. The Vikings play too much man coverage and it burns them over & over when their D-line can’t get to the QB. The Vikings corners have a tendency to give up on long routes, slow up and that’s when the other teams QB can have a field day. The Eagles used that to perfection in the NFCCG. It is all from film study. If the D-line can’t cause pressure the Vikings can be picked apart all day. That’s the flaw to Zim’s D & he does nothing to fix it. Sure it works in the regular season but each time in the playoffs they get destroyed. It will happen again this year unless Zim switches things up. Did he learn nothing from the Chiefs & Cowboys passing at will. Especially in the prevent defense. Yah, prevents wins.

  5. It was nice to watch a game where Elliot wasn’t doing that stupid thing where he mimes eating (or is he turning the crank on an old-timey video camera?)

  6. Cowboys I need you to do better than forcing it to Zeke when it hasn’t worked all night. You have way too much talent on offense for that as the only option.

  7. vikesfansteve says:
    November 11, 2019 at 8:04 am
    The Vikings play too much man coverage and it burns them over & over when their D-line can’t get to the QB. The Vikings corners have a tendency to give up on long routes, slow up and that’s when the other teams QB can have a field day. The Eagles used that to perfection in the NFCCG. It is all from film study. If the D-line can’t cause pressure the Vikings can be picked apart all day. That’s the flaw to Zim’s D & he does nothing to fix it. Sure it works in the regular season but each time in the playoffs they get destroyed. It will happen again this year unless Zim switches things up. Did he learn nothing from the Chiefs & Cowboys passing at will. Especially in the prevent defense. Yah, prevents wins

    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    The Vikings were committed to stopping the run which they did. But to stop the run they had to play man to man. Pick your poison. Let Zeke run wild and chew up clock or defend Daks arm. Zim and the Vikings chose the later and won. Learn football son.

  8. I bet Frederick was questioning the play calling on that 3rd down sweep left…the one where he was supposed to block to his left while the nose was in the gap…poorly designed play. He couldn’t get there to the proper angle to stop penetration. He was demonstrative and yelling at Cowboys sideline after the play.

  9. So now all of a sudden running the ball is a bad play call on 2nd and 2? And having an option to run or pass on 3rd and 2 is also a bad play call? Those plays are going to work most of the time and they just got stopped this time. Play better.

    I thought the long-developing deep sideline route to Diggs on 3rd and 7 at the 50 when the Vikings had to keep the ball to prevent giving it back to Dallas for a game-winning drive was a much worse call than anything I saw from the Cowboys.

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