Troy Aikman was at a loss for words watching the Dallas Cowboys on Tuesday night. But he strung together enough of them to paint a bleak picture of the future of the wayward organization.
“I mean, I don’t know… I just don’t know where this organization… where they go. There are just so many things that have to be addressed this offseason,” Aikman, the FOX color commentator, said in the final minutes of Dallas’ 34-17 loss to Baltimore.
Aikman’s comments came as the camera panned to the Cowboys’ bench where four defenders were sitting, appearing lifeless — the perfect encapsulation of their season.
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More Aikman Critique
While the Cowboys kept the Week 13 game competitive in the first half, Baltimore busted open an unrelinquishable second-half lead on the strength of its rushing attack, which totaled 294 yards and two touchdowns, including 94 yards and a score on 13 attempts from dual-threat quarterback Lamar Jackson in his first action off the reserve/COVID-19 list.
The rock-bottom moment occurred on an untouched five-yard TD run by Ravens running back J.K. Dobbins, after which left tackle Orlando Brown shouted, “Easy money!”
Aikman took umbrage with that, too.
“I think there are a lot of guys who have to take a hard look at themselves and ask what their effort is like. Just that last play alone, I would question some of that,” he said, via The Athletic.
Through 12 games, the 3-9 Cowboys rank dead last in scoring defense and against the run. Mike Nolan’s unit has surrendered an unconscionable 393 points, closing in on the all-time franchise record (436) set in 2010 — also the last time they finished a year winless in primetime, as they did in 2020 (0-4).
“I think it’s a reflection of just where we are right now as a football team,” head coach Mike McCarthy said Wednesday of the team’s Week 15 re-scheduling, per The Athletic. “These are the types of things that happen when you’re not successful. We’re disappointed, make no bones about it.”
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Ex-Cowboys Star Pushes Dak to Leave Dallas
Marcus Spears wants Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott to desert what seems to be a sinking ship. Appearing on Wednesday’s edition of NFL Live, the ex-longtime Cowboys defender and current ESPN analyst opined that Prescott, an unrestricted free agent in 2021, “should want out of Dallas.”
As for potential suitors, Spears name-dropped the San Francisco 49ers, who could move on from incumbent QB Jimmy Garoppolo in the months ahead.
“(There’s) a team on the west coast with (head coach) Kyle Shanahan and a GM named John Lynch that would love to have Dak Prescott running that offense,” he said.
Meanwhile, Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones confirmed once more on Wednesday that past contract talks with Prescott fell apart over the length of the offers, not necessarily the total value. Nor because the front office is scared to invest in the franchise(-tagged) passer.
“Our issues in our negotiations with Dak have been that we’re wanting to be more committed, in terms of the (number of years). We’re not nervous to sign Dak,” Jones said on 105.3 The Fan, via The Athletic. “His makeup is all the right things. He’s a great leader. He’s a great player.”
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL