Maybe Cowboys rainmakers Stephen and Jerry Jones know what they’re doing after all. At the very least, the jackpot they uncovered in the 2016 draft is undeniable. Fourth-round quarterback Dak Prescott has already established himself as NFL ready to the point that some have suggested a controversy will be brewing when Tony Romo returns from his back injury. But it was first-round draft pick Ezekiel Elliott who put on a clinic today in Dallas to the tune of 123 rushing yards, two touchdowns and a whopping 8.6 rushing yards per carry. The Cowboys routed Cincinnati 28-14, won their fourth straight and now assume sole possession of first-place in the NFC East.
Imagine if I told you Dallas would be without Romo, not to mention Dez Bryant and Orlando Scandrick, and this would be the game that made the league notice.
Prescott attempted his 155th pass without an interception. And the explosive Elliott was simply phenomenal, finding gaps, staying upright and turning on the jets given the opportunity, like on a thrilling 60-yard TD in the third quarter. As Elliott crossed the plane into the end zone, television cameras panned from a celebratory owners box (sans Chris Christie) to a giddy, relaxed Romo keeping a stronghold on the sidelines.
That’s the mood in Dallas these days. Relaxed, hopeful, aware of a loaded roster that starts with a dominant offensive line that was all the more improved today with the return of tackle Tyron Smith. The road ahead is treacherous but manageable given the roster talent. Next week Dallas travels to Green Bay, followed by a bye. Then they host the 3-1 Eagles, likely for divisional supremacy.
Love ‘em or hate ‘em, get used to reading a lot about the Cowboys because barring catastrophe, Dallas is the real deal.