Star Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons knows that this feeling is familiar. Back in Week 3, after two routs by a combined 60 points in the first two weeks of the season, Dallas went to Arizona as 13-point favorites and … flopped. They fell behind, 15-3, and as the team struggled for a comeback, they could not force turnovers nor could they push the ball past the goal line in the end zone.
This week, they go to Carolina, and again they’re double-digit favorites against a team that is struggling, the Panthers, who are 1-8. It should be an easy win, but this is the NFL. If you head into the game thinking you’ve got an easy win in tow, you could very well end up with a loss.
The Cowboys know that. They’ve done it. That is the warning that Parsons has for his team here in Week 11.
“We already made that mistake once, we can’t make it twice,” Parsons told reporters this week. “I think during that time, there was a lot of adversity that the team was facing, things like that. We were missing half of our O-line. We’re way more healthy, way more locked in. It’s November-December football, we can’t have those kind of mishaps happen. We got to go out there and win.”
Micah Parsons Was ‘Frustrated’ in Week 10
There was a small whiff of controversy around Micah Parsons this week, though it appears all that has been snuffed out.
It started during the Cowboys’ game against the Giants, when Parsons played off the ball more, and did something he had never done in his career: He recorded no stats. No sacks, no quarterback hits, no passes defended. Not even a tackle. He played 59 snaps and, nothing.
That night after the game, Parsons posted on Twitter: “I ain’t been this speechless in a long time!”
When Cowboys teammate Sam Williams posted a photo of a dog biting a cage with the caption, “No need to free me I’ll break the mf cage,” Parsons posted the reply, “Free me then.”
Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn tamped down the notion that Parsons was unhappy, though he acknowledged his frustration.
“That’s any competitor, right? You want to make sure that you’re always making an impact, and sometimes his impact is other people’s chances to get things because of the attention that goes his way,” Quinn said. “Any competitor can get frustrated with that.”
Cowboys Facing Another Rookie QB
And Quinn did have a warning for Micah Parsons about the Cowboys’ next opponent, too: It could happen again. The Panthers have a rookie quarterback they’re going to look to protect with quick passes. Parsons said he understands that and has put last week’s frustration behind him.
“I always say, I got next week,” Parsons said. “People always say, dead today, gone tomorrow. I get a great opportunity. I think that was one of three games where I didn’t have a sack. I think the production is there. My presence is felt. You look at what I’m — it’s getting to the point where these QBs are taking one read and running outside of the pocket, scared for their lives so I don’t think it’s anything about production-wise.”
And the good news for Micah Parsons and the whole Cowboys defense is that, even as they try to protect Young, the Panthers have allowed him to be sacked 29 times, fifth-most in the NFL.
“I just think we’re just doing a phenomenal job,” Parsons said. “(Dan Quinn) is giving me a phenomenal job, finding ways to get 1-on-1s and things like that. I guess time will tell when we keep play better teams.”