The Cowboys bounced back from their disappointing preseason-opening loss to the San Francisco 49ers last week with a 14-10 comeback victory against the Rams in Honolulu Saturday night. In the game, the starting offense flashed its potential despite a near catastrophic early sack which backed it up against its own 3-yard line. After the play, Jason Witten said Dak returned to the huddle and told the offense “Let’s go 97 [yards] now and score.” They would do just that, giving the unit its first touchdown drive of the preseason.

The drive featured a little bit of everything, beginning with a fine run from Tony Pollard that gave the offense some much-needed breathing room before Prescott then connected with second-year wideout, Michael Gallup for a 31 yard strike. On the play, Prescott targeted Gallup’s back shoulder, allowing the receiver to showcase his athleticism by “Mossing” his defender at midfield. The drive also included a down-field Tavon Austin catch, some yards after catch for Randall Cobb, and a third down strike to perennial security blanket, Jason Witten before a 15 yard scamper from Pollard broke the plane for the game’s first score.

Aside from the early missed assignment in protection which led to the dangerous Prescott sack near the goal line, this was about as well-scripted an opening drive as you could draw up, getting everybody involved and flashing the kind of dynamism that should make this offense so potent in 2019. For an offense that finished the year 22nd in 2018, this would be a huge leap forward.

As for the game itself, there are a few stand out performers worth mentioning. First and foremost is the aforementioned Pollard, who totaled 42 rushing yards on just 5 carries (8.4 avg) and a scored his first NFL touchdown. He also caught one ball for 9 yards. Under center, Cooper Rush put forth another quality performance, completing 10 of his 16 pass attempts before going on to score the game-winning touchdown on a perfectly-placed ball to Devin Smith in the back corner of the endzone. Overall, Rush has bounced back nicely this preseason and continues to make it clear why he should be Dak’s backup rather than Mike White.

As for the defense, Justins March-Lillard and Phillips led the way, combining for 16 tackles, one pass defensed and a beautiful diving interception by Phillips after undercutting the intended receiver. Other standouts included Donovan Olumba, who on one play utilized every inch of his 6’2 frame to bat away a third down pass for the Rams. Olumba is the prototypical Kris Richard defensive back, and plays like the one mentioned above will give him a fantastic opportunity to not only make this team but contribute in the future.

The Rams might not have brought may of their starters with them to Honolulu but beyond the opening drive, Dallas largely left matters to their reserves and camp bodies as well, keeping the playing field mostly even.

With their business in Oxnard and Hawaii now complete, Dallas heads home for the remainder of training camp and will host in-state rival Houston next Saturday at AT&T Stadium. Look Friday for my preview piece for that game.

Darreck W. Kirby

Founder of The Dallas Prospect, Darreck took a love for writing, analysis, and sports and brought them together in one site. Whether tracking the latest Cowboys stats and trends or breaking down film analysis for the latest flick, Darreck does it all.