Last night in Santa Clara, Calif., the Dallas Cowboys squared off against the San Francisco 49ers. Just like the San Diego game, it wasn’t about watching the main starters on the Cowboys roster. It was primarily about seeing which side of the ball has been improving at practice and who is capable of making the 53-man roster.
I liked what I saw on offense. I didn’t see much on the quarterback position. Tony Romo was in for only three plays and had one completion for a negative yard. Brandon Weeden didn’t last very long as he suffered a concussion after taking a blow to the head. Dustin Vaughn struggled, going 7 for 16 for 84 yards and throwing two interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown. Jameill Showers came out and proved that he’s worthy of earning the third string quarterback position, finishing 8 for 17 for 80 yards with a touchdown pass and one interception, and rushed for 19 yards on two carries. I was satisfied with the running game. I liked what I saw from Joseph Randle and Gus Johnson as they both had a combined 54 yards in ten carries. Lance Dunbar did play on the first drive of the game, but didn’t get a chance to run the ball. Darren McFadden was also in on the first drive, but only had three carries for four yards. Tyron Smith and Zack Martin sat this game due to injuries. As far as passing offense went, TE Jeff Swaim was the best player. Swaim caught four passes for 57 yards. The former Texas Longhorn is proving to everyone that he deserves a spot on the roster. A.J. Jenkins had a good night as well, catching two passes for 40 yards. Former TCU receiver, David Porter, who was signed recently made an impression by catching three passes for 30 yards. Dez Bryant, Terrance Williams, Cole Beasley and Jason Witten did not play. Overall, the Cowboys offense has improved, but there’s still work to do.
The defense didn’t seem to have major problems with passes, but they struggled to stop the 49ers’ ground game. The defense only allowed 71 passing yards and no touchdowns, in fact, the Cowboys defense has yet to allow a passing touchdown this preseason. The defense allowed over 150 rushing yards, so that’s something they need to work on during practice. The defense was able to record three sacks, one that was by 2nd round draft pick Randy Gregory. However, the defense had gone the entire game without forcing any turnovers. First round draft pick CB Bryron Jones didn’t play in this game due to an injury.
Cowboys Special Teams
My major concern is Dan Bailey. Bailey missed a 43-yard field goal, and Dan Bailey hardly misses. The punt and kick returns were satisfying, but there needs to be some improvement on stopping the opposing kick and punt returns.
Overall, Dallas did okay, but there’s still some improvements to be done. The biggest concern is injuries as several starters are injured, although none of them are considered serious. The Cowboys want to make sure that all players with injuries are probably healed by September 13th, when they take on the New York Giants at AT&T stadium.