EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – A 30-10 victory is a good one at any level of football, but it's a bit of an odd score. That in and of itself helps detail the type of day Dan Bailey had on Sunday.
The Cowboys finished their afternoon with a field goal and four touchdowns, capped off by 15-yard run from Rod Smith. The logical assumption is that they'd finish with a much more traditional 31-10 scoreline.
But, at the tail end of a bad day at the office, Bailey pushed his third extra point wide left – the first missed extra point of his seven-year career.
In the postgame locker room, Bailey had a succinct description of the afternoon.
"It was just a frustrating day," he said.
Things started normally enough, as Bailey drilled a 21-yard field goal on the opening possession of the game, giving Dallas a 3-0 lead. But on a cold, windy day at MetLife Stadium, that was to be his only make in three attempts.
The next one was no easy task, coming midway through the second quarter. After drops by Dez Bryant and Cole Beasley stranded the Cowboys at the New York 35-yard line, Bailey lined up from 53 yards out and had the distance – only to clang off the right upright.
"It was just a frustrating day," he reiterated.
Call it irony if you want, or perhaps just bad timing. But it was certainly strange, that, on a day when the Cowboys romped to a 20-point win against a divisional rival, one of their most steady playmakers had one of his worst days.
"He's as good a player as we have on our team. He missed three kicks today. None of us has ever seen him miss those kicks," said Cowboys coach Jason Garrett.
It couldn't have been an easy day to kick, with swirling winds at 30-degree temperatures, which became even more apparent when Bailey's 50-yard attempt went wide right in the third quarter.
"The conditions can be a factor, with the wind there that kickers have to deal with on a day like this," Garrett said.
Neither Bailey nor Garrett addressed questions of whether health is an issue. Bailey missed four games this season with a groin injury, but the issue didn't appear to be bothering him Sunday afternoon.
Some days just don't go your way, it seems. But however frustrating it might have been for Bailey, it's not something his head coach sounded worried about for the future.
"He's a great kicker, we'll give him every chance going forward," Garrett said.