That’s it. That’s all I have say!!! (Well, I say more below.)
Update (Reflection and aftermath) –
So, the Cowboys really didn’t get it done. They got outplayed and out scored in LA. The Rams fixed whatever problems they had shown us toward the end of the regular season. They got back to who they were. They are a running team. They ran the ball and won.
I have to admit that I’m surprised that the Cowboys were in the post season. The Cowboys looked mediocre during the first part of the season. Then during the Eagles game, the Cowboys changed their season. They began to run the ball and they found a defense. The identity of the Cowboys became toughness. Tough running. Tough defense.
Tonight, I thought that the key to the game was going to be controlling the clock. The Cowboys had to be able to run the ball. The Cowboys offensive line needed to win the line of scrimmage. On the defensive side of the ball, we had to control Todd Gurley. Unfortunately, the Rams turned the tables on the Cowboys. Goff and the Rams controlled the line of scrimmage. They ran the ball and controlled the clock. The Rams defense went all in to stop the run and the Cowboys were not able to run the ball. On the flip side, the Rams were able to run and run and run. (Like the Energizer Bunny!) Congratulations to the Rams.
The Cowboys need to do a couple things to improve next year. Dak Prescott needs to improve. He is good but not great. He needs to read defenses better. He needs to be a little more accurate with the football. He has to be able to get the ball out of his hands quickly. If the play is not there then run or throw the ball away. The Cowboys must get better on the offensive line. If the identity of the Cowboys is going to be tough physical running with Elliott then we need better line play. I would love to see the Cowboys find a better fullback for Elliott. Someone who will blast open holes and pick up blitzing linebackers. Both the Colts and the Rams showed us that the Cowboys’ offensive line can be dominated. This can’t happen if we truly want to go to a Super Bowl and win.
The Defense must get better. It seems to me that the defensive line needs to get better. Demarcus Lawrence is supposed to be an all-world defensive end. Yet, he didn’t get close to a sack today. In big games he has to show up. He was double teamed all day and was basically a non-factor. Collins and Woods in the middle got pushed around. Randy Gregory seems to be the player that everyone says has a ton of talent but rarely shows up. David Irving is in the substance abuse program, again. Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith were two of the very best linebackers in the league, this year. Leighton was simply awesome. They are both fast, smart and play very, very hard!!!
In spite of all of my belly-aching, I’m very proud of the Cowboys. They overachieved. Jason Garrett proved that he really doesn’t get out coached. I can’t wait until next year.