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Cowboys vs Ravens Recap: Jason Garrett Edition

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I’ve spent the morning breaking down the game and posting as much content as possible on Jason Garrett’s horrendous coaching in the Cowboys’ Week 6 loss. At NBC, I recapped some of Garrett’s major blunders:

  • Early in the game, I loved what I saw from Dallas. Their rushing attack was obviously dominating Baltimore’s front seven, and Jason Garrett took advantage by dialing up a lot of early runs. The problem was that Garrett never utilized that rushing success to acquire big plays through the air. There were very few playaction looks throughout the course of this game, particularly late after the run had already been established.
  • I’m all for pounding the rock if it’s working, but the problem is that you need to consistently beat teams with it again and again. In general, it’s suitable to use the running game to garner big chunks of yardage through the air, even if it means an incomplete pass or two. In the third quarter, the Cowboys ran the ball on 16 of 25 plays, yet didn’t do much to attack the Ravens downfield when Tony Romo dropped back to pass. If you’re really that confident in your running game, you’d think you could still convert a first down following an incomplete pass on 1st and 10. So why not take a shot?

Read the entire post at NBC.

At DallasCowboys.com, I questioned why Garrett didn’t go for it on a 4th and 5 at the Ravens’ 35-yard line.

Since Garrett began calling plays in Dallas and I began tracking them, the Cowboys have converted 47.1 percent of their plays on either third-and-5 or fourth-and-5. The league average during that same period is 49 percent. With Dallas moving the ball against Baltimore effectively all day, we’ll label their chances of converting as an even coin flip at 50 percent. Had the ’Boys failed on their fourth down attempt, they would have left the Ravens with a first-and-10 at their own 35-yard line, a starting point that results in an average of 1.76 points per drive. We can again easily deduce the overall expected points of going for a first down with some math: 3.32 (0.5) – 1.76 (0.5) = 0.78.

Check out the entire analysis.

And at Dallas Morning News, I broke down one of the worst clock management errors I can remember.

With the ball just inside the Ravens’ 35-yard line and 26 seconds left to play (sound familiar?), the Cowboys lined up in ‘Gun Tight End Spread Right’—a typical formation for them in passing situations.

The Ravens blitzed, presumably to try to knock the Cowboys out of field goal range. Romo had Jason Witten open on an out in the boundary, but he decided to throw a slant to Dez Bryant.

Bryant caught the pass for a short gain with 24 seconds remaining on the clock. By the time Bryant was wrestled to the ground and the whistle was blown, there were 21 seconds remaining.

Head to DMN for the full breakdown.

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