When you look back at the end of the season and you talk about how it played out, there are one or two games where you would say that those were gut-check wins. Against the Redskins, this is one of those games that I would say had that feel.
Head coach Jason Garrett and his staff had to find a way, despite what had happened to them in San Diego and then the week before against the Broncos, to get a victory. And with Robert Griffin III in town, this was not going to be an easy task.
Offensively, the Redskins came into the game really not playing with much balance. Despite their record, they still have dangerous players and are talented at all levels. I was very nervous about Alfred Morris running the ball against the Cowboys defense, and physically giving Washington that balance it has lacked all season. But other than one long run, he was largely held in check by
If the Cowboys were going to slow down the Redskins attack, linebackers
Carter then showed some really nice discipline in handling the quarterback on the read option, which was an area that the Dallas defense really struggled with last season when these two clubs met. Lee and Carter were outstanding in getting off blocks and doing a nice job of carrying out their assignments when it came to the scheme.
I was honestly not sure how
Carr did not allow Garcon to bully him in this matchup which he has done to cornerbacks this season. Carr never allowed the receiver out of his sight and it was clear throughout the game that Griffin struggled because his favorite target had no room to operate.
The final stats will tell you that
I have never questioned the toughness of either Church or
While both Church and Wilcox do not have a great deal of game experience between them, they cannot allow tight ends to eat them up the way they have because they will only see more matchups that present problems. Game experience will help, but improvement needs to be made there quickly.
This was a huge win for a club that needed it in the worst way. It was a gut-check game for a lot of players who had no choice but to step up on defense and make plays, which is something that they will once again need next week when they travel to Philadelphia for another divisional game.