Mike McCarthy: Sunday’s win needs to mean something

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The Cowboys returned from their bye on Sunday and turned in the kind of performance that many have been looking for since the start of the season.

Ezekiel Elliott ran for more than 100 yards, Andy Dalton threw three touchdowns, and the defense came up with a pair of key takeaways that helped set the stage for a 31-28 win in Minnesota. It was the first road win since Mike McCarthy became the team’s head coach and McCarthy’s message after the game was that the win has to be a launching pad for the final six weeks of the season.

“This is clearly the most rounded performance and victory that we’ve had this year,” McCarthy said, via Jori Epstein of USA Today. “It took us a little longer to get here today, but I clearly think the journey will make us stronger. We need to do something with this win. We need to build off this win. It needs to mean something.”

In most years, winning a game to move to 3-7 would mean little beyond saving face but 2020 isn’t a regular year in the NFC East. All four teams have three wins, so following through on McCarthy’s directive to build off Sunday’s win could lead to one of the unlikelier division titles in NFL history.