The Dallas Cowboys entered Sunday afternoon looking for a win over a talented Cleveland Browns team. Things did not exactly go that way for America’s Team.
Baker Mayfield and the Browns had their way with the Cowboys in AT&T Stadium as Mayfield and Browns defensive end Myles Garrett returned to their home state for Sunday’s clash in Arlington. Mayfield tossed multiple touchdowns, and Garrett wrecked havoc while rushing quarterback Dak Prescott. Even Jarvis Landry threw for a score.
It was simply a disaster of game for a team that entered the 2020 season with some Super Bowl hopes.
The Dallas Cowboys defense has been a major disappointment.
Cleveland led by as much as 41-14, and there was nothing that the Cowboys defense could do to stop the Browns’ offensive attack. Kevin Stefanski’s group ran for a whopping 307 yards, led by D’Ernest Johnson’s 95 (Nick Chubb left the game early with an injury).
The Cowboys defense was all out of sorts throughout the four quarters. The secondary gave up big plays, and Stefanski attacked the middle of the defense — specifically linebacker Jaylon Smith.
All-in-all, the Cowboys were flat-out out-played in AT&T Stadium. That has been the theme for this team during the first four games of the Mike McCarthy era.
A comeback fell just short.
The Cowboys did make things really interesting in the fourth quarter. Led by quarterback Dak Prescott’s brilliant final quarter, Dallas scored 24 in the last frame and even cut the lead to 41-38.
Unfortunately, the Cowboys defense and special teams failed to get the ball back to Prescott and company before the Browns added another score on the board. Odell Beckham all but closed the door on another improbable Cowboys comeback victory.
Dallas needs to rebound quickly.
Sitting at 1-3 usually means the season is over; however, the weak NFC East still gives the Cowboys a realistic path to the NFC Playoffs. That said, this team — especially on the defensive side of the football — does not look like a playoff-caliber squad.
The Cowboys welcome in old friend Jason Garrett and the New York Giants next weekend. New York is without star running back Saquon Barkley and are still looking for their first win of the Joe Judge era. Still, division games are always tricky, and the Cowboys have not earned the right to make you think that there is a guaranteed win on the schedule.
Dak Prescott has largely been phenomenal through four games. Outside of that? It has been a major, major disappointment for just about everybody involved.
Featured image via Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports