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Return To Glory: The Dallas Cowboys – 2019

I have always loved the Dallas Cowboys. I wore my Emmitt Smith and Troy Aikman jerseys until the numbers wore off. I suffered through Quincy Carter, Vinny Testaverde and Drew Bledsoe. I saw hope with Tony Romo. And now I see a second coming. We have Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, and Amari Cooper. A modern version of the triplets.

The time has come to bring this dynasty back – and I am going to get a head start. In my next Madden 2020 Franchise I will assume ownership of the Dallas Cowboys.

Here is the team we are starting with:

The rules I will play by:

  • All-Pro
  • 8 Min Quarters
  • All trades enabled
  • Injuries on
  • Accelerated Clock to 20 seconds
  • Manual roster control
  • Relocation turned off

Time to get into it. If you have followed my work before – you know a roster shakeup is about to happen. To remind everyone – I am playing within the world that I am in. If trades seem unrealistic to you – this is a video game.

Preseason Roster

Staff

Jason Garrett is our head coach. He is only signed through the 2019 season. I am in no rush to sign him to a long term extension. I have not been impressed with his playoff success. He is coaching for his job this season.

I decided to let go of our current Scout and Trainer. I signed Tony Dubb to be our lead scout. He specializes in scouting QBs and may prove valuable if we are unable to sign Dak Prescott to an extension. For our trainer we decided to go with Dan Winters – he is a world class trainer and should help get our injured guys back on the field.

Offense

We are starting the year with a great team on the offensive side of the ball. I have one of the best Offensive Lines in the game, but have room to improve at LG. Connor Williams is a solid guard but I think I can do better. We have Jason Witten as our TE, but he is coming back from a year in the booth and getting pretty old. I like the depth that we have at the WR position – Cooper, Cobb and Gallup are a solid trio of receivers. In the backfield we have Ezekiel Elliot and his newly signed long-term contract. Tony Pollard is his backup and provides a good receiving option out of the backfield. I would like to get a better lead-blocker at fullback, I will have to take a look and see what I can do there. The backup QB spot is also an area of need. I do not trust Cooper Rush to lead this offense if Dak Prescott goes down.

Defense

I like the pieces that we have on defense, and with a few additions we could be great. DeMarcus Lawrence is a stud on the Defensive Line – he leads a solid group with Collins, Gregory, and Crawford. We have two of the best young linebackers in all of football with Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch. Byron Jones is a star on defense – we need to build around him and improve our secondary.

Roster Moves

I have never really been a fan of Sean Lee. He is a good player, but he is always hurt. As an aging linebacker carrying a high salary – I’d like to move him for a player that fits my vision of this team a little better.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Sean LeeROLB$6.01MINDQuentin NelsonLG$1M
Antwuan WoodsDT$570K2020 Round 4
2020 Round 7

Quentin Nelson is one of the best young lineman in the game. He makes our offensive line even better – slotting in between Smith and Frederick.

Next, I need a young TE to groom behind Jason Witten. The Eagles have a surplus at that position – I am going to see what it takes to get Dallas Goedert.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Joe ThomasMLB$2MPHIDallas GoedertTE$150K
Kerry HyderLE$590K
2020 Round 4

Giving up two backups and a 4th round pick for a young TE with upside seems like a good deal for me.

On the defensive side of the ball – I need a SS. Jeff Heath is a gutsy player, but he isn’t talented enough to be a core member of our secondary. Sitting in Free Agency is Eric Berry. I also notice that there is a solid young QB that I can pickup to backup Dak – for now.

PLAYERPOSYRSSAL
Eric BerrySS1$5.75M
Tyree JacksonQB1$2.15M

I also noticed a few other players in free agency that are very tempting to sign – but came with some concerns:

  • Antonio Brown – recently released by the Patriots amid sexual assault and harassment accusations. Release by the Raiders due to character issues.
  • Dez Bryant – I love Dez. I want him back with the Cowboys. Looking at the current way my team is built, I do not need a big receiver like him.
  • Andrew Luck – he already retired once this year. The CPU will sign him – once he is signed I will edit his stats so they release him.

As a new owner I am going to avoid these players – the talent is there, but it is not worth risking team chemistry of the happiness of my fan base.

Now I need to go out and find a better fullback. I really like what Patrick Ricard does in Baltimore. He is relatively young at 25 years old – and is one of the best lead blockers in the game.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Tyrone CrawfordRE$7MBALPatrick RicardFB$150K
Connor WilliamsLG$730KMatthew JudonLOLB$1.51M
2020 Round 22021 Round 6

This was a big trade – I gave up a bit. Tyrone Crawford is a good player – but not as good as his salary. Connor Williams was a nice piece to have as a backup – acquiring Nelson made Williams expendable. I also had to throw in a 2nd round pick – this was a positive net gain to get my new starting FB and ROLB.

  • Matthew Judon moved to ROLB.

I have no idea why I feel the need to make this next move. I am setting out to acquire Taysom Hill. I don’t know what position I will play him at yet, but I like his versatility.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Lance LenoirWR$570KNOTaysom HillQB$130K

My next group of moves is aimed at acquiring high end draft picks for 2020. I am going to move players with expensive contracts – or players that are easily replaceable.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Robert QuinnRE$6MARI2020 Round 1
Christian CovingtonDT$940K2021 Round 4
PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Maliek CollinsDT$2.05MCAR2020 Round 1
2020 Round 3
PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Jameson OlawaleFB$500KTEN2020 Round 3
Dalton SchultzTE$570K

In all, I moved Robert Quinn, Christian Covington, Maliek Collins, Jameson Olawale, Dalton Schultz and a 3rd round pick in 2020. I was able to acquire two 1st round picks and a 3rd round pick in 2020, plus a 4th round pick in 20201.

At this point there are not many pieces left that I am willing to trade. I need to sign a few free agents to fill my roster.

PLAYERPOSYRSSAL
Clint BolingRG1$4.68M
William HayesLE1$7.35M
Muhammad WilkersonLE1$6.75M
Brandon MarshallROLB1$3.85M
  • Clint Boling moved to LT.
  • William Hayes moved to DT.
  • Muhammad Wilkerson moved to DT.
  • Brandon Marshall moved to LOLB.
  • Taysom Hill moved to HB.

Preseason Week 1 – Cowboys @ 49ers

  • W 21-20

Preseason Week 2 – Cowboys @ Rams

  • L 24-30
  • Muhammad Wilkerson will be out 2 weeks with a shoulder tear.
  • Antonio Brown signed with Green Bay for $10.1M.
  • Andrew Luck signed with Denver for $17.2M (attributes have been edited so he will be dropped)
  • Austin Ekeler traded to Tampa Bay.
  • Jason Pierre Paul traded to Pittsburgh.

Preseason Week 3 – Texans @ Cowboys

  • W 28-21
  • Dez Bryant signed with Cincinnati for $7.06M.

Preseason Week 4 – Buccaneers @ Cowboys

  • W 35-28
  • Taysom Hill purchased #7 from Cooper Rush, who will now wear #5.
  • Team Captains: Dak Prescott, Zack Martin, Travis Frederick, Byron Jones, Jaylon Smith, and DeMarcus Lawrence.

Week 1 – Giants @ Cowboys

Updated Depth Chart

As we head into the regular season – this team is ready to roll. We have one of the best teams in the league on paper. Over the course of the season there are a few contract negotiations that need to be figure out – Dak Prescott, Amari Cooper, Patrick Ricard, Matthew Judon, Anthony Brown, Randall Cobb, and Jason Witten are all looking for new deals. Our priority will be Prescott and Cooper, getting the others would be a bonus.

We open the season at home against the New York Giants.

Game Time

The offense didn’t seem to have an issue all game long. The Giants were unable to force us to a punt the entire day. The first touchdown of the season was a pass from Dak Prescott to Randall Cobb. Prescott was consistent all day – he looked like a savvy veteran. The lone dark spot of the game today was the injury to Ezekiel Elliot – who broke multiple ribs. Tony Pollard and Taysom Hill filled in just fine – but who knows how this will impact the squad throughout the season.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 19/26, 271 YDS, 4 TD
  • Tony Pollard – 11 ATT, 61 YDS, 1 REC, 12 YDS, TD
  • Michael Gallup – 6 REC, 115 YDS, 2 TD
  • Jason Witten – 6 REC, 56 YDS
  • Randall Cobb – 3 REC 39 YDS, TD
  • Brett Maher – 2/3 FG, 62 LNG
  • Jaylon Smith – 10 TAK, 1 INT (NFC Defensive Player of the Week)

Week 2 – Cowboys @ Redskins

The Redskins scored first, but the Cowboys answered immediately. Tony Pollard took a toss to the right, juked Josh Norman out of his shoes, and scampered up the sideline for a 75 yard TD.

This turned out to be a weird game. Nobody played particularly poorly, but nobody played great either. The downfall was the amount of turnovers we had – Ezekiel Elliot was sorely missed in the backfield and Pollard showed his youth with two fumbles.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 19/28, 344 YDS, 2 TD, 1 INT
  • Tony Pollard – 10 ATT, 98 YDS, 1 TD, 4 REC, 54 YDS
  • Amari Cooper – 5 REC, 97 YDS, 1 TD
  • Michael Gallup – 4 REC, 60 YDS
  • Randall Cobb – 3 REC, 67 YDS
  • Tavon Austin – 1 REC, 34 YDS, 1 TD

Week 3 – Dolphins @ Cowboys

We head into this week at 1-1. We should be 2-0. I have a number of players that a ready to negotiate contracts, but I need to take care of Dak Prescott first. This is also the first chance I have to take a look at college players. This is a big draft for me, as I have three first round picks at the moment.

The top of the board is heavy with positions I am looking to fill in the offseason. I am not planning on re-signing Matthew Judon at ROLB – so I will see how versatile the LB class is. I also could use an upgrade at FS over Xavier Woods. The DE prospects also show some good potential – and could be great to pair with DeMarcus Lawrence. The interesting thing in this draft class is the WR class. Vincent Diggs is projected to go high, and could be a target if I decide to move on from Amari Cooper.

Game Time

Tony Pollard opened up scoring again with a long run. This was a 54 yard toss around the left side of the field. He once again used his patented juke move to get into the open field. The ground game was incredible through the first half.

Late in the 4th quarter – the Cowboys found themselves down 27-24. Tony Pollard helped grab the lead for good with his 3rd rushing touchdown of the game.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 15/24, 174 YDS 1 TD, 1 INT
  • Tony Pollard – 15 ATT, 147 YDS, 3 TD
  • Taysom Hill – 6 ATT, 44 YDS
  • Amari Cooper – 8 REC, 119 YDS, 1 TD
  • DeMarcus Lawrence – 9 TAK, 2.5 SK (NFC Defensive Player of the Week)

Week 4 – Cowboys @ Saints

This is a big week for us. Dak Prescott is ready to negotiate his contract. A fair offer is a 6 year contract for $108M with a $74.4M signing bonus – for a total of $183M – or about $30M a season.

I decided to not mess around. I went ahead and offered 6 years for $114M with a $78M signing bonus – a total of $192M. He accepted the deal – glad we did not have an awkward back and forth. Now we don’t have to worry about this contract anymore.

The next guy I wanted to re-sign was Patrick Ricard. A good fullback is hard to come by. A fair offer is 3 years for a total of just under $9M. I didn’t want to mess around and offered him 3 years for an even $9M and he took it.

Next on my list was Byron Jones. The NFL is a passing league, and you need a lockdown corner for the superstar receivers. Jones was seeking 3 years at $46.4M. I went ahead and gave him 3 years at $48.5M.

Then we came to Amari Cooper. I’ve decided that if I can build around him and Gallup at WR then I will be set for years to come. A fair offer is 4 years at $61.6M. I am the Dallas Cowboys, I need to overpay a little bit. Four years for $64M.

Game Time

The ground game was strong in New Orleans this weekend. Taysom Hill came out to play – and showed the Saints that they were wrong to trade him. He scored on the ground three times on the day. He was not even the Cowboys the most prolific runner for the Cowboys – that was Tony Pollard, who rushed for 174 yards.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 14/18, 209 YDS, 1 TD
  • Tony Pollard – 22 ATT, 174 YDS, 1 TD, 1 REC, 13 YDS
  • Taysom Hill – 6 ATT, 59 YDS, 3 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 6 REC, 94 YDS
  • Randall Cobb – 5 REC, 84 YDS, 1 TD
  • Byron Jones – 12 TAK

Week 5 – Packers @ Cowboys

Looking at the rest of the players looking to re-sign for the future, many are not in my plans with the amount of money they are seeking.

  • Matthew Judon is looking for $35M over 3 years.
  • Jason Witten is looking for $6.5M next year.
  • Randall Cobb is looking for $21M over 3 years.
  • Anthony Brown is looking for $28M over 4 years.

Now is the time where I have to make a decision for my organization. These players are all playing a key role for me this season. Is there any way that I can move these players in a way that will help me now AND in the future?

I already came to terms with Witten no longer playing football when he left for the Monday Night Football booth. I can play Dallas Goedert as our primary TE for the rest of the season – I will need to pick up another TE though.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Jason WittenTE$4.25KNYJ2020 Round 1
2020 Round 3
2021 Round 4

This is a pretty sweet deal. I lose a few mid-round picks but I think there is a lot of value in the first round in this draft class.

Next up is Randall Cobb.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Randall CobbWR$2.56MSEA2020 Round 1
2020 Round 4

The Seahawks are always looking for WR depth. I like this move for me. Randall Cobb is good, but not at his asking price for next year.

Anthony Brown is my next player on the move – I just re-signed Byron Jones and can find a replacement for Brown pretty easily.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Anthony BrownCB$2.05MCIN2020 Round 1
2021 Round 3

This is crazy. What were the Bengals thinking?

Next I decided to get rid of Matthew Judon, who I just picked up a few weeks ago. With all of the players I am re-signing I don’t have $12M a year for my 3rd best linebacker.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Matthew JudonROLB$1MNYG2020 Round 1
2020 Round 3
2021 Round 5

Well, it is safe to say we made some moves for the future of this franchise. I acquired four more first round picks while moving those four veterans. I now have a total of seven first round picks in 2020 (NYG, CIN, NYJ, CAR, SEA, DAL, ARI). I now need to acquire a slot receiver, a secondary TE, a ROLB, and an additional CB – to get me through the 2019 season.

At corner we have Jordan Lewis at 3rd on our depth chart. He is serviceable – I think that will work for us this year. Brandon Marshall has stepped in at ROLB. I now have a big hole left at TE, and Tavon Austin is our slot.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
2021 Round 4INDJack DoyleTE$5.08M

I have no idea why the Colts were looking to move on from Jack Doyle, but he instantly steps in to start for us at TE.

The Browns have Antonio Callaway on the block – he would be a good fit to replace Randall Cobb.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
2021 Round 2CLEAnotnio CallawayWR$30K
2020 Round 6

I probably overpaid a little bit – oh well.

Injured TE Jake Butt was also on the block.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
2021 Round 6DENJake ButtTE$80K
2021 Round 6

I used a few late round picks to add to our TE depth here.

I then looked to Free Agency to add the final pieces we needed.

PLAYERPOSYRSSAL
Will TyeTE1$1.35M
Frankie LuvuLOLB1$1.85M

OK – I think that is good for roster moves for now. I was able to hang on to all seven first round picks in 2020, and my first round pick in 2021. Jack Doyle steps in for Jason Witten, and is actually an upgrade. Antonio Callaway is our slot. Brandon Marshall is our ROLB and Jordan Lewis is our 3rd corner.

  • Jack Doyle will wear #84.
  • Antonio Callaway purchased #11 from Cedrick Wilson – he will wear #16.

Game Time

Ezekiel Elliot returned in a home game against the Packers. The offense was rolling in the beginning of the game. We scored on our first two possessions – both of which ended with touchdown passes to Michael Gallup. The offense stalled a bit in the second half, and the defense helped out. Eric Berry scored on a pick six from 45 yards out. The Packers were never really a threat in this game.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 12/17, 176 TDS, 2 TD, 2 ATT, 32 YDS
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 21 ATT, 77 YDS, 1 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 6 REC, 107 YDS
  • Michael Gallup – 3 REC, 39 YDS, 2 TD
  • Eric Berry – 3 TAK, 2 INT, 1 TD (NFC Defensive Player of the Week)

Week 6 – Cowboys @ Jets

A few turnovers and an offense that was not clicking took us into halftime with at a 21-14 deficit. The score was 28-17 heading into the 4th quarter. On the first play of that quarter, Dak Prescott went deep down the sideline to Amari Cooper, who made a great catch over the CB in the endzone to bring the game within one score. We then converted on teh two point conversion to make it 28-25.

We got the ball back at our own one yard line with three minutes left, still down three points. After getting a few first downs, Dak found Tony Pollard on a wheel route out of the backfield for a 48 yard TD to get us in the lead for good.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 23/28, 376 YDS, 3 TD, 1 INT
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 21 ATT, 85 YDS, 1 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 6 REC, 87 YDS, 1 TD
  • Jack Doyle – 5 REC, 42 YDS, 1 TD
  • Antonio Callaway – 5 REC, 83 YDS
  • Michael Gallup – 4 REC, 68 YDS
  • Tony Pollard – 1 REC, 48 YDS, TD

Week 7 – Eagles @ Cowboys

The Eagles jumped out to an early 10-0 lead. We clawed back with a touchdown to Amari Cooper at the beginning of the second quarter. After holding the Eagles to a FG, we worked our way down the field and scored on a pass to Tavon Austin – grabbing a 14-13 lead going into halftime.

With the game tied at 21-21 we had the ball in the Red Zone in the 4th quarter. We decided to go for it on a QB sneak. We were ruled short of the first down marker, and after an unsuccessful challenge the eagles got the ball. They scored, grabbing the lead with 3:22 left.

Dak threw a pick 6. Damn. Game Over.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 16/21, 213 YDS, 2 TD, 1 INT
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 12 ATT, 111 YDS, 1 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 4 REC, 79 YDS, 1 TD

Week 9 – Cowboys @ Giants

The Giants got the ball to start the game and scored right away. On our first drive, we marched down the field without any problems – only to fumble at the New York 3 yard line. Our next possession was more exciting – and was capped by a one handed Michael Gallup TD catch. After the Giants scored again to go up 14-7, Tony Pollard evened things up with a 50 yard run up the gut. Our defense was finally able to hold the G-Men, and we went into halftime after kicking a field goal up 17-14.

Deep into the 3rd quarter Ezekiel Elliott found himself injured for the second time this season. He left the game with a high ankle sprain. We scored on a pass to Gallup on the next play.

Our defense could not stop the Giants, and with the score now at 24-21, we were able to find the endzone again. Dak took a broken play and scrambled up the left sideline for a rushing TD. Our defense finally made a stop and we moved the ball down the field easily, putting the game out of reach with a Tony Pollard TD.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 14/18, 210 YDS, 2 TD, 3 ATT, 26 YDS, 1 TD
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 13 ATT, 103 YDS
  • Tony Pollard – 13 ATT, 106 YDS, 2 TD, 1 REC, 42 YDS
  • Michael Gallup – 7 REC, 74 YDS, 2 TD
  • Chidobe Awuzie – 7 TAK, 2 FF, 1 FR (NFC Defensive Player of the Week)

Week 10 – Vikings @ Cowboys

In the 2nd quarter – we were looking at a 10-0 deficit following a pick six.. We were able to march down and score on a quick slant from Dak to Amari. We got the ball back and scored again to go into halftime up 14-10. A touchdown to Antonio Callaway put us up 21-10 in the 3rd quarter. Another touchdown to Cooper put the game out of hand at 28-10. The final score was 49-17.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 20/23, 306 YDS, 5 TD, 1 INT, 2 ATT, 20 YDS, 1 TD
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 17 ATT, 165 YDS, 2 TD
  • Michael Gallup – 8 REC, 164 YDS, 2 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 8 REC, 98 YDS, 2 TD

Week 11 – Cowboys @ Lions

This was a dominant performance from the start. The Lions were never in this one.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 14/19, 330 YDS, 4 TD, 1 INT, 4 ATT, 54 YDS (NFC Offensive Player of the Week)
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 24 ATT, 148 YDS, 1 TD, 4 REC, 69 YDS, 1 TD
  • Michael Gallup – 2 REC, 169 YDs, 2 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 4 REC, 52 YDS, 1 TD

Week 12 – Cowboys @ Patriots

The Patriots jumped out to an early 13-0 lead on a rainy night in Foxboro. Near the end of the second quarter, Jason Garrett decided to go for in on 4th and goal, and Michael Gallup was able to haul in a pass from Dak Prescott for a TD.

With 20 seconds left in the game – down 8 – Dak Prescott found Tavon Austin on a post for a 66 yard TD. Our two point attempt was unsuccessful. We lost 29-31.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 21/32, 369 YDS, 3 TD, 3 INT
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 11 ATT, 51 YDS, 1 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 7 REC, 136 YDS
  • Michael Gallup – 5 REC, 64 YDS, 2 TD
  • Tavon Austin – 1 REC, 66 YDS, 1 TD
  • Jaylon Smith – 10 TAK

Week 13 – Bills @ Cowboys

The 9-3 Bill rolled into town and didn’t put up much of a fight. We jumped out to a 28-0 lead and our offense stalled from there. The final score of this one was 35-17.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 14/19, 195 YDS, 4 TD, 2 INT
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 17 ATT, 132 YDS, 1 TD, 2 REC, 21 YDS, 2 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 4 REC, 75 YDS
  • Michael Gallup – 5 REC, 68 YDS, 2 TD
  • Byron Jones – 11 TAK, 1 INT

Week 14 – Cowboys @ Bears

The Chicago defense was killing us in the first half – collecting nine sacks. Somehow we still went into halftime with a 17-16 lead. The sacks continued in the second half – and we took the lead late in the fourth quarter 24 -19. With 1:43 left, the bears went up 27-24. With 0:36 left, Dak found Amari in the endzone to put us up 31-27.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 16/24, 257 YDS, 3 TD
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 12 ATT, 97 YDS
  • Taysom Hill – 1 ATT, 14 YDS, 1 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 5 REC, 60 YDS, 2 TD
  • Antonio Callaway – 4 REC, 72 YDS
  • Byron Jones – 11 TKL, 1 INT
  • Khalil Mack (Bears) – 8 TAK, 7 SACKS (NFC Defensive Player of the Week)
  • Tavon Austin suffered a torn ACL.
PLAYERPOSYRSSAL
Emanuel HallWR1$1.45M

Week 15 – Rams @ Cowboys

We rolled into halftime up 21-13. In the second half the squad pulled away and dominated the Los Angeles defense. The final score was 42-27.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 17/20, 311 YDS, 4 TD (NFC Offensive Player of the Week)
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 20 ATT, 84 YDS, 2 TD
  • Tony Pollard – 1 REC, 13 YDS, 1 TD
  • Michael Gallup – 5 REC, 78 YDS, 1 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 4 REC, 58 YDS
  • Antonio Callaway – 3 REC, 113 YDS, 1 TD
  • Aaron Donald (Rams) – 7 TAK, 5 SACKS (NFC Defensive Player of the Week)

Week 16 – Cowboys @ Eagles

We are currently 11-3 and have clinched at least a wildcard playoff spot. A win on the road here would clinch the NFC East and a first round bye.

Game Time

We started the game off with a solid drive, and capped it off with a Tayson Hill rushing TD. Our ground game was dominant – which was fitting for the weather. We took home a 36-19 victory.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 16/25, 267 YDS, 2 TD
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 12 ATT, 101 YDS, 2 TD, 6 REC, 87 YDS (NFC Offensive Player of the Week)
  • Antonio Callaway – 3 REC, 54 YDS, 1 TD
  • Chidobe Awuzie – 13 TAK

Week 17 – Redskins @ Cowboys

I have never believed in resting your starters. I think it is better to keep the momentum going than to give players time off. Keep the schedule and routine the same. We are also still playing for home field advantage – I am going to let my starters go out and have some fun this week.

Game Time

This turned out to be quite the shootout in the first half. Dak and the boys took a 24-20 lead into halftime. The final score reflected that of a Big 12 game, and the Cowboys won 52-45.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 16/24, 445 YDS, 6 TD (NFC Offensive Player of the Week)
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 16 ATT, 125 YDS, 1 TD
  • Amari Cooper – 4 REC, 173 YDS, 2 TD
  • Antonio Callaway – 5 REC, 136 YDS, 3 TD
  • Devin Smith – 2 REC, 54 YDS, 1 TD
  • Jaylon Smith – 11 TKL

Season Stats

*= NFL Leader

Offense

Passing

NameYARDSCOMPATTTDINTCOMP%RATINGLONG
Dak Prescott4,45326636548*1172%140.6*94*

Rushing

NameATTYARDSAVGTDLONG
Ezekiel Elliott2001,2806.41361
Tony Pollard886447.3775
Dak Prescott372937.9131
Taysom Hill221486.7527

Receiving

NameRECYARDSAVGTDLONG
Amari Cooper761,30717.21175
Michael Gallup591,04317.715*94*
Antonio Callaway3564218.3671
Jack Doyle2736313.4231
Ezekiel Elliott2331813.8346
Tony Pollard1018118.1348
Tavon Austin410827.0466
Devin Smith47819.5238
Dallas Goedert47318.3124
Will Tye12626.0026
Noah Brown11313.0013
Taysom Hill11313.0013

Defense

NameTAKTFLSACKINT
Leighton Vander Esch11552.00
Jaylon Smith11222.02
Byron Jones10811.03
Chidobe Awuzie10640.02
Eric Berry8320.04
Xavier Woods7630.01
DeMarcus Lawrence611810.50
Jourdan Lewis5900.05
Muhammad Wilkerson5886.00
William Hayes5587.00
Randy Gregory50115.50
C.J. Goodwin1400.00
Brandon Marshall1100.00
Darian Thompson900.00
Justin March400.00
Trysten Hill421.00
Dorance Armstrong300.00
Kavon Frazier300.00
Luke Gifford300.00
Frankie Luvu100.00

Kicking

NameFGMFGAFG%FG LNGXPMXPA
Brett Maher101376%62*71*71*

Season Awards

MVP – Dak Prescott
Coach of the Year – Jason Garrett
OPOY – Dak Prescott
DPOY – Khalil Mack (Bears)
OROY – Kyler Murray (Cardinals)
DROY – Montez Sweat (Redskins)
Best QB – Dak Prescott
Best RB – Todd Gurley II (Rams)
Best WR – Antonio Brown (Packers)
Best OL – Zack Martin
Best DL – Trey Flowers (Lions)
Best LB – Khalil Mack (Bears)
Best DB – Desmond Trufant (Falcons)
Best K – Matt Bryant (Falcons)

Wildcard Weekend

Bills 31 @ Chiefs 28
Lions 26 @ Cardinals 10
Browns 27 @ Jaguars 24
Eagles 37 @ Bears 31

Divisional Round

Bills 28 @ Ravens 31
Browns 21 @ Patriots 47
Eagles 26 @ Falcons 28

Lions @ Cowboys

Our offense was sputtering in the first quarter – our best play was a punt that was downed inside the 5 yard line. At halftime we were down 13-3.

A 56 yard field goal brought us within 10 late in the 3rd quarter – 16-6. Down 23-6 in the 4th quarter – a solid drive brought us into the endzone bringing the score to 23-13. The Lions scored again to go up 26-13. We were unable to keep the ball moving with less than 2 minutes left and turned the ball over on downs. This was an embarrassing loss for the franchise. Our receivers dropped the ball 5 times.

Stats

  • Dak Prescott – 17/28, 229 YDS, 1 TD, 2 INT
  • Ezekiel Elliott – 10 ATT, 26 YDS
  • Amari Cooper – 3 REC, 60 YDS
  • Jaylon Smith – 10 TKL

Conference Championships

Patriots 27 @ Ravens24
Lions 0 @ Falcons 31

Despite the loss, we decided to re-sign Jason Garrett to a three year contract extension.

Pro Bowl

Super Bowl

Falcons 35 @ Patriots 32

Offseason Re-Sign Period

There were many veterans that I wanted to re-sign: Eric Berry, Jack Doyle, Taysom Hill, etc. I decided it was best to let them walk and see what kind of roster I could put together after the draft.

Offseason Free Agency Week 1

Looking at our rosters, our biggest needs are on the defensive side of the ball. We need a starting ROLB and SS. Our only DT is Trysten Hill – we need to beef up there as well. On offense we need a slot WR.

As it stands we have -$5.94 M in cap room. I need to move a few overpriced players to get under the cap. Cameron Fleming is making $5.25M in 2020, Trey Edmunds $850K, and Cody Wichman $740K. I also have 10 WRs, so I can trim some of the fat there.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Jon’vea JohnsonWR$590KDEN2020 Round 5
Damore’ea StringfellowWR$460K
Simmie Cobbs Jr. WR$460K

It was nice to get something for three players I would have cut from the team anyways.

PLAYERPOSCAP TOFORPOSCAP
Cameron FlemingRT$4.5MATL2020 Round 1
Trey EdmundsHB$850K
2020 Round 5

This is unbelievable. I know it is the last pick in the first round – but still, what are they thinking?

Offseason Free Agency Week 2

Nothing happened.

Offensive Free Agency Week 3

Nothing happened.

Offseason Free Agency Week 4

I always offer terrible contracts to the better players available in the last week of free agency. Luckily, one of them wanted to sign with us:

PLAYERPOSAGEYRSCONTRACT
Derrick HenryHB265$2.75M

What a deal! I have an incredible backfield put together for 2020. The only issue will be finding enough carries for all of my RBs.

Around The League

  • Nelson Agholor – 4 years $43.9M Bills
  • Jordan Howard – 5 years $29M Bills
  • Antonio Brown – 3 years $57.3M Texans
  • Kareem Hunt – 5 years $38.9M Redskins
  • Josh Gordon – 3 years $29.7M Colts
  • Lamar Miller 4 years $30.5M Titans
  • Emmanuel Sanders – 3 years $36.1M Cardinals

2020 NFL Draft

Heading into the NFL Draft we have a ton of work ahead of us. We have the following picks in 2020:

  • Round 1 – Pick 4 (NYG)
  • Round 1 – Pick 10 (CIN)
  • Round 1 – Pick 14 (CAR)
  • Round 1 – Pick 17 (SEA)
  • Round 1 – Pick 18 (NYJ)
  • Round 1 – Pick 24 (ARI)
  • Round 1 – Pick 28
  • Round 1 – Pick 32 (ATL)
  • Round 6 – Pick 187 (CLE)

So we have eight, yes EIGHT first round picks. I know that my defense needs the most work. If I can hit it big on a few picks we will be a Super Bowl contender once again. If I miss on these picks, I am setting my franchise back decades.

The #1 player on my board is USC Free Safety Alani Beckett. He won the Heisman Trophy in 2019. Right behind him is Oregon State Free Safety Jadeveon Freeman – who is actually two years younger and the better athlete of the two. I should be able to get one of them with the #4 pick in this draft.

The Vikings and Redskins each took a MLB with their picks, leaving the Dolphins before my first pick. I think I am OK with waiting until my pick to avoid trading up. The Dolphins took a RG out of South Carolina. It is my turn to pick and I am very unsure which way to go with this pick.

PLAYERTOFOR
2020 Round 1 Pick 4LAR2020 Round 1 Pick 5
2020 Round 4 Pick 101
2021 Round 6

I didn’t see myself making a decision – I decided to let the Rams trade up so I could acquire some draft capital.

The Rams took a LE out of Boston College.

I looked around for a solid trade and was really unable to find anything great. I see the free safeties lasting a few more picks, but I am unsure if I can grab one at the 10th pick. Looking at the two players, they are pretty identical. The edge here goes to Freeman, who has better measurables and is two years younger. I am going against my gut to draft a Heisman winner and will take the Beaver free safety.

Not bad! The Rams pick was a 78 overall, there are two players on the board still that rated better than Freeman.

The Colts took Beckett with the very next pick, and he is a 78 overall. Damn! This isn’t too terrible – Freeman will be better than that by the time he is 23.

My next target was a RE out of Oklahoma. He is another young player at just 21 years old. He is instant competition at RE for Randy Gregory.

My next pick is #14 – I am still in need of an OLB – but I may be drafting BPA here.

Martin Connover gives me great depth behind my elite OL.

I know I need a starting caliber OLB. Noah Hyde is there and we had a good grade on him. I also see C.J. Holiday the TE – he is projected to be a second round pick, but we graded him as an early first round pick. I’m going with the TE.

I still have picks #18, #24, #28, and #32. I would like to grab a DT, OLB, and a WR with those picks if possible.

I have Lonnie Coakley as the best player on my board right now. He is a Free Safety out of Tennessee. I feel like I could draft him and slide him over to SS – he seems pretty versatile. We have an early first round grade on him too.

The Raiders grabbed Noah Hyde at #21 – he was only a 74 OVR. WE made the right decision.

My next move was to beef up the depth at my DT position. I had a better grade on Gene McIntosh, but Braxton Sanders was similar and younger.

Ouch – a bit of a reach, but not a terrible overall.

With the 28th pick, McIntosh was still on the board.

Not a terrible reach, I can’t complain about this pick considering it is my 7th pick of the day.

With my final pick of the round, Vincent Diggs is still available.

This is great – he adds to my WR depth and allows me to trade one later on if needed.

I had a couple of picks later in the draft, and wanted to pick up a Kicker and a Punter. I first went with Kyle Stephens – who showed great power and above average accuracy.

With my final pick of the day, I took Tommy Kinney – also a Punter. One of these guys will slide over and become a Kicker for us in the future.

Wrap Up

There you have it, we are now ready for the 2020 NFL season. Things did not go as we hoped in 2019. With a good mix of talented rookies and veterans – things are looking up as we head into the next season.

– Buzz

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