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Mailbag: Biggest Reason For Struggles On Offense? Getting Ball Downfield?


You guys break down football better than I ever could. Who's more at fault for the offensive struggles: QB, play calling or offensive line? Did this game actually expose the lack of quality playmakers on this offense without Zeke (Dez included)?

Bryan: You've built a team that has to successfully run the ball consistently. Your quarterback is a play action guy that throws well on the move. When you don't scare people running the ball, it allows them to play your quarterback and wide receivers differently. Here is the problem.

David: As is usually the case when you lose by 28, I think there's more than enough blame to go around. In this particular outing against the Eagles, it was pretty jarring just how little the Cowboys could generate in their passing game. Dak Prescott had accuracy issues, his receiver dropped passes. It looked like Dak missed some open guys, and it looked like the receivers struggled to find separation. It typically goes hand in hand, but there's no denying that it was a bad day at the office — from everyone involved.


Is it me or can this team not threaten a defense down the field? It seems like defenses have no respect or any fear 20 yards down the field. That seems to be the biggest thing missing from this offense from 2014 until today. Is it QB? Is it lack of speed on the outside? And how can it be fixed?

Bryan: It's a rare combination to have a team that uses play action like this one does and takes shots down the field. The Falcons and Patriots come to mind but that's not something you often see. This scheme works more underneath in order to maintain the ball and limit the potential mistakes.

David: It's hard to figure out, because these receivers were just fine last season. But after 10 games, it certainly becomes harder to defend the level of play from that position. I think the Cowboys struggle to find separation, and I'm not sure they have a guy that can beat solid coverage. That's not a big deal when your running game is forcing people to leave receivers unattended. But we've seen what a problem it can be when the ground game isn't there. It's definitely a concern for this team heading into 2018.

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