Mac Engel

As long as these results are acceptable, Dallas Cowboys will continue to be losers

No one will be fired today, of course, and some of the excuses are valid. But Jason Garrett and his team are losers.

Everyone with the Dallas Cowboys is so wealthy and comfortable that they fear nothing, not even losing a game to the 0-4 New York Jets.

Winning is the goal, but it’s gravy.

The Cowboys, the team that was at least better than the worst of the NFL, can no longer even say that.

On Jerry Jones’ 77th birthday, his team took his cake and threw it on the ground with one of the worst, least inspiring halves of football of the Jason Garrett era.

After watching the Jets defeat the Cowboys 24-22 on Sunday in New Jersey, Jerry would be more than justified in firing Jason Garrett. And everyone else in his organization.

You don’t have enough fingers and toes to point at the guilty parties for this stinker. They all stink. Even Rowdy is a loser.

The same Dallas Cowboys that were 3-0 are now 3-3. Because of course they are.

A team that looked so complete and proficient during a 3-0 start can’t beat the Jets.

When I asked Garrett if his team was still confident, he said, “I sure hope so.”

It’s as if Knute Rockne never left us.

Cowboys linebacker Jaylon Smith said his team was “frustrated.”

I asked him if they were pissed.

Smith said a four-letter word to describe something typically found in the bottom of a toilet, which is a far more appropriate description of how this team played Sunday, and how they feel.

Whatever the Cowboys’ “reasons” for their latest tour de toilet, there is no plausible or reasonable explanation for why a team that considers itself one of the better teams in the NFL can lose to the New York Jets.

The Cowboys played without both starting offensive tackles, which is a considerable loss and a strain on any quarterback or offense.

The offense lost star receiver Amari Cooper to a quad injury early in the game. And then they lost defensive end Dorance Armstrong in the first half as well.

Add it all up and — if you lose to the Jets at all — you’re not at the high end of the NFL. You’re just another team.

When the season ends, the vast majority of the 2019 New York Jets’ season-in-review video will be plays and highlights from their win over the Cowboys. Up until Sunday, they had none.

The Cowboys made the Jets and quarterback Sam Darnold look like a version of themselves we have never seen before. These Jets looked like the Cowboys during Weeks 1, 2, and 3.

Has anyone seen defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence? Because opposing quarterbacks have not.

Is linebacker Leighton Vander Esch no longer permitted to make tackles near, or across, the line of scrimmage?

The Jets led 21-3 late in the first half before the Cowboys rallied to avoid total humiliation. Instead, the Cowboys settled for straight embarrassment.

Darnold, who had not played since Week 1 after he was diagnosed with mono, cut up and trashed the Cowboys defense like he was Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers. He passed for 338 yards with two touchdowns, including a 92-yarder in the first half that was a gorgeous pass, and terrible coverage.

The killer is the Cowboys moved the ball and even outgained the Jets.

Speaking of worthless stats that mean nothing now, the Cowboys converted 10 of 17 third downs and won the time of possession battle.

Running back Zeke Elliott rushed for more than 100 yards, and the defense held Jets running back Le’Veon Bell to just 50 yards.

The offense stalled in the red zone too often. Despite making a 62-yard field goal, Brett Maher needed to make all four of his attempts. He missed one.

The Cowboys did what they always do, which is make it interesting.

They could not tie the game on a two-point conversion attempt with 47 seconds remaining, even though a Jets defender clearly interfered with tight end Jason Witten.

“It’s a bang-bang play,” Witten said. “I don’t know if you are going to get that call in that situation. ... Most of the time in those critical situations like that, a quick 4-yard hook route, they let those situations play out.”

The Cowboys did not deserve to win the game, and they are right where they should be at 3-3.

No one is going to get fired over it, so don’t lose any sleep over the result.

The Cowboys aren’t.

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Mac Engel is an award-winning columnist who has extensive experience covering Fort Worth-Dallas area sports for 20 years. He has covered high schools, colleges, all four major sports teams as well as Olympic games and the world of entertainment, too. He combines dry wit with first-person reporting to complement a head of hair that is almost unfair.
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