3 & Out: ‘Runaway’ Best Receiver Trio?

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FRISCO, Texas – Three quick topics after arguably the most impressive Week 1 Cowboys win since head coach Jason Garrett’s own play-calling debut a dozen years ago:

  • Dangerous downfield trio
  • The defense’s debut
  • The trenches

I Know…

if Dak Prescott keeps getting consistent chunk plays from Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup and Randall Cobb, this team will win a lot of games.

The Cowboys had a whopping five completions over 25 yards against the Giants, the fifth-most in a single game in franchise history. Much of it came from the receivers scrapping for extra yardage.

In Week 1, the Cowboys’ top three wideouts all ranked in the top 30 among receivers in yards after catch: Gallup (3rd; 76 yards), Cobb (11th; 41 yards) and Cooper (27th; 22 yards), according to ESPN.

Cooper added that big-play dimension to the offense when he arrived in the second half of last season. He finished the year tied for 10th among receivers in yards after catch (411).

Cobb, too, can turn a 10-yard play into 40. In 2017, his most recent full-ish season, he produced about the same total (409) with Green Bay. His 14-yard catch and run in the second quarter Sunday – an excellent second effort to break a tackle from cornerback Antonio Hamilton – set up Jason Witten’s touchdown.

And now the development of Gallup, the team’s third-round draft pick a year ago, could push this receiving core to new heights. Gallup is picking up right where he left off in preseason as Prescott’s main target during the month Cooper missed with a heel injury.

I Think…

the defense did its share of good things against the Giants.

Captain DeMarcus Lawrence said afterward, “I don’t think it was good enough,” and you can bet defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli will harp on Saquon Barkley’s 59-yard run – a gap miscommunication, Garrett said – and Cody Latimer’s 43-yard catch.

I get it. 470 total yards is too many. The playoff loss to the Rams still leaves a sour taste.

But Dallas did hold the Giants to 10 points until the final three minutes. Eli Manning and company converted only 2 of 11 third downs. The defense got two takeaways, including one from Lawrence, who will continue to round into form coming off offseason surgery.

Pro Bowl cornerback Byron Jones will settle into more snaps, too. And defensive end Robert Quinn will be back from suspension in a week. The group will be fine.

I Have No Idea…

how Jonathan Allen’s sprained knee will impact the Redskins’ defensive line, but there’s still plenty of talent.

Allen is reportedly week-to-week with the injury, but Washington still has problematic playmakers up front: Daron Payne, Matt Ioannidis and veteran Ryan Kerrigan, for years a tough blocking assignment against the run and pass.

Yes, Carson Wentz had a big day for Philadelphia (313 passing yards, 3 touchdowns) in a comeback win over Washington. The Cowboys also have a terrific offensive line who worked well together in Week 1 after spending most of preseason at less than full strength. But this will be a challenge Sunday in Landover, Md.

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