Cowboys Hit All-Time Low as NFL Changes Week 15 Game vs. 49ers

Cowboys owner/GM Jerry Jones

Getty Cowboys owner/GM Jerry Jones

For the first time in the franchise’s esteemed history, the Dallas Cowboys are flexed out of Sunday Night Football.

The NFL announced Wednesday that Dallas’ Week 15 home game against the San Francisco 49ers, originally scheduled for 7:20 p.m. CT on Dec. 20, will now take place at noon CT on CBS, with Giants-Browns moving into the SNF slot.

America’s Team is America’s Team no more. The Mike McCarthy-coached Cowboys will finish the 2020 campaign winless (0-4) in primetime games, something that hasn’t occurred since 2010 when Jason Garrett began calling the shots.

The club is slated to close the year at Cincinnati, home for the Niners and Philadelphia Eagles, and at New York for the second of two divisional affairs.

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Easy Call

It was a no-brainer flex decision for the league after the Cowboys were trounced by the Baltimore Ravens, 34-17, on Tuesday night. The defeat dropped Jerry Jones’ squad to 3-9, removing them from NFC East contention — and the national television schedule.

Despite 12 days to prepare for the twice-rescheduled game, Dallas’ moribund defense had no answer for Lamar Jackson and the Ravens’ rushing attack, which totaled 294 yards and two touchdowns, including 94 yards and a score on 13 attempts from Jackson in his first game off the reserve/COVID-19 list.

Sadly, the 294 yards is only the second-most Mike Nolan’s unit surrendered this season. You may remember they ceded a ridiculous 307 ground yards to the Cleveland Browns in Week 4.

“Obviously, it was not a very good night at all and I think we’ve just got to stick together,” linebacker Leighton Vander Esch said, per the team’s official website. “We’ve got to lean on each other and trust each other and have confidence going into the game that we’re going to go out there and everybody’s going to do their job, including myself.”

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Zuerlein Reacts to Blown Kicks

The ghost of Brett Maher reared its ugly head for all the world to see Tuesday as Cowboys kicker Greg Zuerlein shanked not one, not two, but three field goals — from 40, 53, and 52 yards, respectively.

It was windy and chilly in Baltimore on a night where even normally automatic Ravens K Justin Tucker blew an attempt. Conditions weren’t exactly cataclysmic, however, and no outside circumstance can excuse a troika of misses.

“I wouldn’t say it was anything, at all,” Zuerlein said, per the team’s official website. “I think the conditions were fine, even if there was wind. I’m good enough to make the kicks, I just didn’t do it.”

Through 12 games, Zuerlein has connected on 22-of-28 FGs (78.6%) and 20-of-23 extra points. He’s just 1-of-6 from tries of 50-plus yards, though the former Rams’ Pro Bowler hadn’t missed a kick since Nov. 11 prior to Tuesday.

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Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL