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  • Dak Prescott led the Dallas Cowboys to a 28-17, statement victory over the Arizona Cardinals on Monday Night Football
By Andy Benoit
September 26, 2017

1) This was The Dak Prescott Show. He changed the game, a 28-17 win over the Cardinals, with his legs. There were designed red zone QB runs (a Cowboys staple), rollouts and bootlegs, as well as some improvisational movement. Prescott made touch throws and velocity throws to all levels of the field, including off of hard movement to his left. An astounding display of strength and athleticism, and on a night when Dallas needed it. For Ezekiel Elliott and the vaunted offensive line, generating rushing yards was like pulling teeth for the first three-and-a-half quarters. That the rushing attack finally iced the game with a strong drive after the second-year quarterback had put them ahead should be exciting to Jason Garrett & Co.

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2) Dez Bryant cannot separate. He was a nonfactor when facing Patrick Peterson’s man coverage. Peterson joins Janoris Jenkins and Aqib Talib in the group of elite corners who have stifled Bryant this season. Credit the Cowboys for moving Bryant into the slot at times. Peterson doesn’t travel there when it’s zone coverage. Bryant’s 15-yard touchdown, which came on a crosser-turned-sit route between zone linebackers, was smart coaching. And Bryant rewarded it was a Herculean effort to reach the end zone.

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3) Arizona’s offensive line is a huge problem. It was in Weeks 1 and 2 and again on Monday night. Demarcus Lawrence has had a terrific season, but he’s not Reggie White. Right tackle Jared Veldheer just made him look that way. Fill-in starter John Wetzel also continued to struggle on the left side. The Cardinals are not equipped to survive this. Bruce Arians’s scheme emphasizes getting all five eligible receivers out in routes. That means one-on-one pass-blocking. This approach can’t continue under these conditions. Dallas consistently got quick pressure off a three-man rush. Carson Palmer moved extremely well in the pocket and it wasn’t enough. Arizona’s scheme must be amended.

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