Mac Engel

Predictable demolition of the Jaguars exposes the Cowboys biggest problem

The Jason Garrett Fun Ride continues its maddening journey, and now is back on target to reach the Super Bowl.

You are free to laugh, but the Dallas Cowboys played like a Super Bowl team in their 40-7 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday.

The Cowboys played nothing like their previous selves, which was the team that could only sling it sideways with the quarterback who could neither shoot, or pass, straight.

Cowboys reality

Where has this team been located exactly? In the Scott Linehan “Break Glass In Case You’re Going To Get Fired” emergency box?

“I feel like we said it at the beginning of the year, we have a lot of new guys,” said receiver Cole Beasley, who had more than 100 receiving yards and two touchdowns. “It can take a little time to figure it out. You have all that time in camp but you don’t know. ... We haven’t figured it all the way out yet but I think we are getting there.”

Everything the Cowboys had not been through the first five games of the regular season they were in Week 6. They ran it. They passed it. They caught it. They blocked. They tackled. They forced turnovers. They made long field goals.

Against the best defense in the NFL.

Somehow, this was all totally predictable. They always do this under Garrett.

The Cowboys’ win over the 2017 AFC runner up was impressive, and exposed the ultimate “problem” of this team: They are too good to truly stink up the place.

The Cowboys are a pretty good team, and far from bad enough for Hall of Fame owner Jerry Jones to “clear the room” and fire everybody not named Stephen and Charlotte so he can hire New Orleans head coach Sean Payton.

Barring a run of injuries, these Cowboys are not going to be so bad as to finish with a record atrocious enough that it will guarantee them a top five pick in the draft where they will select a quarterback. Suspend that fantasy.

The Cowboys are committed with what they have, to Dak Prescott, and what they are doing. Your best option as a fan to this merry group of football buffoons is to simply hope it all works. That perhaps God will have mercy on his “favorite” team and put them in an NFC title game.

No one either in the right, or wrong, mind should be crazy enough to buy Sunday’s result as an accurate reflection of what this will mean for the rest of the season, so don’t try.

Take it for what it is.

Dak spanks Jaguars, Bortles

With 3:47 remaining in the first quarter, the Cowboys defeated the 3-2 Jaguars. Dak ran it from 17 yards for a 10-0 lead. That was enough.

As bad as the Cowboys offense had been through the first five NFL weeks, Blake Bortles and his Jacksonville buddies were up to the ineptitude task. The Jags O vs. the Cowboys D was not going to score 10 points.

On the previous play, Dak thought he had the score on a nice pass and catch by rookie Michael Gallup; replays showed Gallup just barely missed placing his second toe down for the touchdown.

By that point, Dak was passing it in a way he has not really since his rookie year and the Cowboys were dominating a good team.

Beasley was as good as he’s ever been since he played at SMU.

“You saw Witten stuff. You saw No. 1-ish,” Jerry said. “We talked about, ‘What is No. 1?’ but we saw an emphasis of what he does.”

At the half, the Jaguars had three first downs, 64 total yards, four punts, and trailed 24-0.

Sunday was the first time the defense had defensive tackle David Irving, who had been suspended, to go with defensive tackle Maliek Collins and the rest. The Cowboys did this without Sean Lee, who remains out with a bum hamstring.

“It’s been a while since we all played together,” defensive end Tank Lawrence said. “All of those guys bring so much to our group.”

By the end of the game, Dak ran it for 82 yards. He passed for another 183 yards and two touchdowns. He found his former favorite target from his rookie year, little Cole Beasley, nine times for 101 yards and both scores.

Playing with a lead, the defense made quick work of Blake Bortles and an offense that has fewer weapons than a convent.

With defensive tackle David Irving back from yet another suspension, the Cowboys have legit defensive players all over the field. If you give them a lead, they can be dangerous.

The Cowboys problem

The Jaguars finished with a little more than 200 yards, and just 10 first downs. The game was so lopsided backup quarterback Cooper Rush replaced Dak late in the game.

Sunday was a perfect day for the Cowboys.

They are a pretty good team, and back to .500.

The Jason Garrett Fun Ride continues, and right now it’s headed to the Super Bowl. Next week, don’t be surprised if it’s headed right out of the playoffs.

Just know it won’t be going to the top of draft.

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