The Dallas Cowboys are headed to the playoffs, but defensive end Micah Parsons knows they have to rectify their Week 18 performance to make it matter.
Dallas suffered a 26-6 defeat to Washington, ending the regular season on a sour note. Now, Parsons is calling out his teammates (and himself) with his post-game comments.
According to The Athletic’s Jon Machota, Parsons thinks he and the Cowboys have to take advantage of the situation they’re in because he’s not getting any younger.
“Everybody should look at themselves in the mirror,” Parsons said. “And say, ‘What do we really want?’ … I’m not going to be young forever. I already realized that with what my body is going through. I want to win while I got this chance.”
It’s interesting to hear Parsons talk about his age as he is just in his second NFL season, but he makes a fair point: it may not seem like the window is going to close fast, but it will sneak up on Dallas faster than they realize if they don’t take advantage.
Parsons Bests His Rookie Record (Barely)
After four sacks in his first two games, it seemed like a forgone conclusion that Parsons would best the 13 sacks he totaled in his rookie season in 2021. While he did in fact crack that barrier against the Commanders, he did it with little room to spare.
According to Pro Football Reference, Parsons is credited with a half-sack against the Commanders, giving him 13.5 on the season. That means he’s totaled 9.5 sacks in the 15 games since Week 2, which is still a top-level return.
Parsons has to deal with constant double teams and chipping, which is to be expected for a player who will likely be a first-team All-Pro for the second consecutive season.
It is worth noting, however, that Parsons TFL and QB hits numbers have dropped in 2022. The former Penn State star totaled 14 TFLs after 20 in 2021 and nearly matched his 30 QB hits last year with 27 in 2022.
Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones Responds to Loss
As one might expect, there were very few positive things said about the Cowboys’ loss to the Commanders. Losing in a must-win situation is one thing, but a 20-point loss raises a lot of red flags.
Dallas owner Jerry Jones is certainly aware of that. Jones didn’t hesitate to call the performance out as a “butt-kicking,” but also said that it should provide plenty of motivation before the Wild Card game.
“We get to suck on that all week,” Jones said according to ESPN’s Todd Archer. “If that doesn’t make you want to get ready to go in about six, seven days, nothing else will. That was as thorough a butt-kicking as we’ve had this year, and we’re going to find out if that’ll get you ready or not. It should with what these guys are made of.”
Dallas will be traveling to Tampa Bay to face Tom Brady and the Buccaneers, but they will get an extra day of rest and planning due to the game being on Monday Night Football.