Film room: How did the Cowboys' rookie starters fare against the LA Rams? - John Owning, Dallas Morning News
Reviewing how the rookies did in their first actions as a Cowboys player.
The first catch Diggs allowed was a 31-yard completion on a go route down the sideline while in press-man coverage. Diggs provided very good coverage on this competition evidenced by the fact that it took a perfect throw from Goff to be completed as Diggs was merely a fingertip away from forcing the incompletion.
Even though the coverage was very good, Diggs was missing one little detail that would have made it great and led to an incompletion. Diggs should have stayed closer to Van Jeffersons hip (about a six-inch difference) and made subtle contact with the WR instead of just running with Jefferson downfield - that six-inch difference would put Diggs in perfect position to break up the pass. Making that contact would have enabled Diggs to maintain tighter coverage while squeezing the receiver to sideline, which would have turned a difficult catch into a near-impossible one.
Those are the tiny differences that separate the good from the great CBs in the NFL, which is why this play is a great one to learn from. Compare Diggs' technique with Byron Jones' technique while defending this go route from Cody Latimer. Notice how Byron makes contact and stays glued to Latimers hip, which enables him to squeeze the route to sideline and make a play on the ball at the catch point. It a small difference between he and Diggs' technique, but thats why Jones is currently one of the NFLs best CBs while Diggs appears to be a promising rookie. The little details make all the difference.
The third-year wide receiver seems confident Dallas will be able to connect on big plays in the passing game.
Gallup said he was encouraged by how hard Lamb took the first loss of his pro career. Thats what you want to see from a young guy like that, because he put in a lot of time and effort learning the playbook and coming out here and working, he said. To see him really want to win like that, that just shows his character. Hes going to be a good player for us for a long time.
Perhaps call it a night of close calls. The Cowboys receivers didnt have a bad night, but theres plenty of room to improve. It goes without saying that the front office didnt invest these resources in the position for so few big plays. But as Gallup noted, theres plenty more time for that. Theyre going to come, so were not worried about it, he said. Its a long season. But I think we meshed well together.
Zekes got off to a great start with his new Feed Me tattoo on Sunday.
Elliott rushed for 96 yards and added another 31 through the air in the teams first game with Mike McCarthy as head coach. The 19-yard touchdown reception that led to the big reveal was as artistic as the tat itself.
"We had vertical routes to that side, and everyone ran with that speed and left me to check down wide open,'' Elliott said. "When I got the ball, I really was just going to attack the sideline. So I started running up the sidelines, then I saw that a couple of players were over pursuing a little bit. "I slammed on the brakes, made a couple of guys miss and finished in the end zone.''
Elliott knew exactly what he wanted. He drew up what he was thinking and gave it to his tattoo artist in Dallas. What were his mothers thoughts? "At this point, my mom is like over getting mad at me for getting tattoos,'' Elliott said. "Now shes coming around to them.''
With Jarwin done for the year, could Brown fill the open tight end spot?
As things stand right now, it looks as if Dalton Schultz and Blake Bell will be the plugs the Dallas Cowboys use now that Blake Jarwin is out of the picture. Neither really has much starting experience or production in the NFL, which is concerning to say the least. They will probably be given every opportunity to prove themselves, but they may be on a short leash.
If Im being completely honest, I dont have a whole lot of faith in either Dalton Schultz or Blake Bell. I think both of them are a pretty big downgrade in both talent and athleticism from Blake Jarwin. Because of that, I wouldnt be completely surprised if the Cowboys turned to someone else currently on the roster. Enter Noah Brown.
To the shock and awe of many Im sure, I really believe Noah Brown is probably better suited to replace Blake Jarwin than anyone else the Dallas Cowboys currently have on the roster. Yes I know Brown is a receiver and doesnt have the prototypical TE build, but from a skill set standpoint he checks a lot of the boxes.
A suggestion to switch up the offensive line.
While Connor Williams plays at left guard right now, he played as a left tackle in college with the Texas Longhorns. In his second season with Texas, he was a consensus first-team All-American and first-team All-Conference. The issue with him was that he got injured in his draft year, playing only five games. It is noted that while he played great in 2016, he didnt look the same in 2017.
One of the main reasons he was shifted to the interior of the offensive line is because he lacks a long reach. At this point, the Cowboys dont have much of an option. I think that giving Williams a shot at playing on the outside as he has before will at least be better than what we have seen among the list of Collins backups. At the very least, he can fill in until Collins comes back for Week 4 (hopefully).
Dallas will be without Lee and Vander Esch likely till November.
A longer than expected absence for Lee exacerbates the Cowboys' issues at linebacker. Leighton Vander Esch had surgery for his broken left collarbone on Tuesday and will miss six to eight weeks. Joe Thomas will take over as a starter, and Rashad Smith, who was signed off Chicago's practice squad Tuesday, can't be at The Star until Thursday because of COVID-19 protocols.
Lee signed a one-year deal in the offseason to return to the Cowboys for an 11th season. He has been beset by injuries over the years, ranging from hamstring, toe, neck, knee and wrist injuries. Last year was the first time he played a full season; he was held out of the 2018 finale by the coaches. NFL Network first reported the Lee surgery.
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