Presented by

Mailbag: Hidden Yardage; Ways To Help Offense?


The Panthers' special teams definitely got the better of the Cowboys Week 1 and you could argue that losing the field position battle was the difference in a one-score game. How did you feel the special teams impacted the Carolina game and are you concerned about that unit going forward? - GINO TOMASELLI

Bryan: No question that special teams affected the way the game was played. Whether it was return yardage or penalties, it wasn't where it needed to be. The missed field goal didn't help either. I don't think Keith O'Quinn is over his head and I know he's a good enough coach and teacher to get things corrected more sooner than later.

Rob: Both of Carolina's scores in the first half came off hidden yardage. The Panthers scored a touchdown after a 30-yard punt return to the Cowboys' 35. Then they got a field goal at the end of the half after another 30-yard gain – a 15-yard return and a 15-yard Cowboys penalty. Punt coverage was a strength last year and they've got to get back to that.


The only quality runs that we saw from Zeke was when Dak was in shotgun. Considering our lack of firepower at the wide receiver position, why doesn't Dallas implement more option plays which might result in opening up things for Zeke? If we take a similar approach to how Carolina runs their offense with Cam Newton and Christian McCaffrey, the offense might be able to move the ball more consistently. Thoughts? - KENNETH MUNDY / NAPLES, FL

Bryan: That's exactly how I'd play from here on out. Cam Newton is not an accurate quarterback either, but he can beat you running the ball at certain points in the game. Turn this into a college offense playing to Prescott's strengths and let it roll. Making him a pocket passer is the wrong approach.

Rob: Well, since they scored their only touchdown off an option pitch, I see why this is a suggestion. I'm all for attacking the defenses in different ways. Maybe some option helps get Prescott and Elliott in more of a rhythm. But I also want to be mindful of keeping my quarterback healthy, especially given the lack of experience at the backup spot. I'm not ready to say the receiving corps lacks firepower, by the way. There were a couple of big plays to be made in the passing game against Carolina.

Related Content