Instant Review: Staff Writers Give Quick Analysis Following Cowboys' Loss to Eagles

ARLINGTON, Texas – The Cowboys fell behind early and never could catch the high-flying Eagles, who took sole possession of first place in the NFC East.

The Cowboys' Thanksgiving Day was ruined by a 33-10 loss to the Eagles, who are now 9-3, while the Cowboys dropped to 8-4.

Check out the instant reactions from the staff of DallasCowboys.com.

David Helman: It'd be easy to dog the defense for a lousy performance – particularly in the first half. But after surrendering two 80-yard drives to open the game, the Cowboys defense buckled down and forced Philly to settle for field goals for much of the night. As bad as the defense played, the offense did next to nothing to help the cause. The offensive line didn't do much to rise to the Eagles' challenge, as Tony Romo was sacked four times and DeMarco Murray didn't muster 100 yards. Against a defense ranked 26th in the league, Romo threw for his lowest output of the season and Dez Bryant managed an extremely quiet 50 yards on three catches. I knew the defense would struggle against this talented offense, but I also thought the Dallas offense was capable of scoring points and keeping pace – it wasn't. Kudos to Mark Sanchez. I didn't think he was capable of beating an 8-3 team on the road. He wasn't spectacular, but he did everything winning quarterbacks are supposed to do. Thursday night in Chicago feels an awful lot like a must-win right now. 

Bryan Broaddus: Give the Philadelphia Eagles a lot of credit in the way they were able to play defense this afternoon. They came into the game as one of the top teams in the league when it came to sacking the quarterback. In six games this season they had four games where they had forced four or more sacks in their games. I felt like that this Cowboys offensive line was the best one that they had forced this season and they would be able to hold this Eagles defense in check by just allowing one sack. With the Cowboys unable to keep the game close throughout and throwing the ball became a must it played right into the Eagles hands which exactly how they have operated the majority of the season. It was a great effort on their part to get guys home.

Nick Eatman: I definitely never saw the Cowboys coming out with the win, but thought it'd be much closer. Philly just attacked Dallas from the start and the Cowboys had no answers on either side of the ball. I think the way the offense played was much more disappointing. All three of us on the staff thought both teams would be in the 30's each. That being said, the Cowboys' offense didn't do their part. I really thought they would exploit the Eagles' secondary better than they did. And this isn't an excuse at all, but it's safe to say the Cowboys were affected more by the short week than the Eagles. And the main reason for that was Romo, a guy who hasn't been practicing much all week during the year, but now has to get ready on a Thursday after a Sunday night game. Again, it's not an excuse because that's the way it is but Romo just wasn't himself and it hurt the Cowboys all day. Philadelphia did a nice job against the run and even the yards DeMarco Murray picked up, were tough-sledding. This was a showdown of the two best teams in the division. And now it's pretty clear who the team to beat is in the division. [embeddedad0]

For the initial gut feeling predictions of the staff writers posted on Wednesday, click here:

http://www.dallascowboys.com/news/2014/11/26/dallascowboyscom-writers-share-gut-feelings-cowboys-eagles-showdown

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