MJD waxed the Dallas defense for 135 yards rushing on 27 attempts
Another week, same ol’ story. The Cowboys have too many mistakes and bad play-calling and drop another game in this humiliating season. This time it wasn’t penalties and it wasn’t even blatant mistakes, it was the little things that a team that wants to win does not commit. While head coach Wade Phillips does not think his players have quit, the evidence speaks for itself.
Give a lot of credit to a Jaguars team that everyone else in the league has been able to contain and shut down, but not the Cowboys. The Jags came in determined to run the ball with Maurice Jones-Drew, and go down field with the much criticized Mike Sims-Walker. It worked. The Jags were able to do what they wanted on offense and their defense took advantage of the Cowboys mistakes to get the win.
The game started off well for backup QB Jon Kitna and the Cowboys. They drove the ball down the field and took the lead on a David Buehler 34-yard field goal. The Jags responded by way of WR Mike Sims-Walker who made a couple of nice grabs and then caught a 10-yard TD pass from QB David Garrard. The Cowboys seemed to have no problem moving the ball but when HB Felix Jones had a short pass bounce off his hands into the waiting arms of Jags DT Terrance Knighton it seemed as though the Cowboys were headed back down the same old road.
Garrard and company turned that turnover into another touchdown after MJD had a nifty run that setup a 42-yard touchdown pass from Garrard to TE Mercedes Lewis. Lewis was covered by LB Bradie James on the play, but James never had a chance to stay with Lewis, who is built more like a wideout than a tight end. After the Cowboys and Jags exchanged turnovers, an interception of Kitna on a pass that went off the hands of WR Miles Austin and a quarterback sack/strip of David Garrard by Cowboys linebacker Victor Butler, the Cowboys drove down the to the Jacksonville goal line. With the ball an inch off the goal line the Cowboys ran twice with RB Marion Barber, the second on fourth down, and neither was successful. Time ran out and the teams went into the half 14-3 in favor of the visiting Jags.
The Jags continued to put on the offensive performance of their season as the added two touchdowns on the strength of QB David Garrard and the air attack, as Garrard found 2nd year wideout Mike Thomas on a 15-yard touchdown pass, and TE Mercedes Lewis on a 9-yard TD, his second of the game. The Jags took control of the game and a 28-3 lead.
The Cowboys were able to finally break the plane of the goal line when Barber scored on a 1-yard TD run, but the Jags answered back with Garrard capping a fantastic day with a 2-yard touchdown run of his own. The Cowboys did add another garbage time TD on a Jason Witten 8-yard touchdown catch, but the game was never in doubt.
For the Jags, hopefully they can build upon this game and string some more wins together to keep pace in the very touch AFC South division. As for the Cowboys, well, another dismal performance in an extremely frustrating season. QB Jon Kitna played decent, but the rest of the team failed to back him up. Kitna had three of his four interceptions bounce off his receivers hands. The play-calling was also questionable. Why Jason Garrett wouldn’t call a quarterback sneak on the one-inch line in beyond me, but like the story has been all season the Cowboys could not run the ball and mistakes and bad coaching cost them the game.
Coming into the game the Jaguars were confident they knew what Dallas was going to do and how they would line up, especially on defense during blitz situations. The Jags proved that the Cowboys continue to be predictable and uninspired. Dallas will have a tough road to travel if they hope to get another win this season. With games against the Packers, Giants, Saints and Colts coming up, the only team the Cowboys might have a real shot against is the Lions, but even they are playing a lot better now.
I think it is safe to say that the Jaguars put the final nail in the coffin of the Cowboys season. How appropriate that it happened on Halloween. This is no trick and it certainly is not a treat for Cowboys fans.