SEATTLE - The staff writers were all surprised by Sunday's 30-23 win over the Seahawks. Here is the instant analysis immediately following the game.
Bryan Broaddus:I thought it would be difficult for the Cowboys to win this football game if they struggled running the football. Where the Cowboys had some nice success running it early with the committee approach it was DeMarco Murray in the second half that was saddled up to finish it off. My biggest concern was if Russell Wilson was able to get things going on the ground as well much like he did against the Redskins on Monday night it would have been a very long day. The team that played the better rushing defense was the Cowboys and they played the majority of the game on the Seahawks side of the ball. Even when
Wilson ran with the ball there was a Cowboys defender near him to make a stop. Rod Marinelli and his guys made Russell Wilson a pocket passer on Sunday while DeMarco Murray earned every yard he got and that was the difference in the game.
Nick Eatman: I'm a believer. How can you not be now? I know many fans were pretty confident the Cowboys could win this game. And I even thought they could, just didn't think they would. And after Dwayne Harris fumbled the punt, I had that "here we go again" moment. But the Cowboys didn't have it. They kept attacking. Honestly, I thought this had the chance of getting out of hand, and as it turned out it nearly was - but just for the other team. Dallas completely dominated this game and only their own turnovers kept it close. The Cowboys were the better team on this day and it wasn't even close. I thought Jason a Witten would do a little more but he did score a touchdown, as did Gavin Escobar. But what I didn't expect was the Cowboys having the best defense on the field. Huge win for the Cowboys.
David Helman: Once again, when I doubt this team can pull off a big win, they prove me wrong. But this is so much bigger than beating the Saints at home. The Cowboys ran over the league's best run defense and overcame two huge turnovers – all in the NFL's most hostile environment – to take down the defending world champion. The fact that the Cowboys once again started slow, falling into a 10-0 hole in the first quarter, and then roared back to outscore Seattle, 30-13, down the stretch is simply amazing. Russell Wilson was as close to a non-factor as he could possibly be, as the Dallas defense was absolutely stifling. Three of the Seahawks' four scoring drives covered less than 30 yards, as it was mainly Dallas miscues that set them up to score. If not for some shoddy special teams play, this could have been a rout. I wasn't a believer even after the Saints win, but that one made me a believer.
Here are the gut feelings for staff writers Nick Eatman, Bryan Broaddus and David Helman.
Bryan Broaddus: For the Dallas Cowboys to go Seattle and win this game on the road in one of the most difficult venues in sports they are going to have to find a way to control the game with their rushing attack. The Seahawks are no strangers to having defending the run and realize that the task ahead for them when dealing with the Cowboys will be a difficult one but one they are prepared to handle. My gut feeling this week is that when the final whistle blows it will be the Seahawks Russell Wilson that we are talking about with the better rushing numbers than DeMarco Murray. It will be the inability of the Cowboys defense to slow Wilson down from running the ball that will ultimately cost them this game.
David Helman: You don't see these very often in the NFL, but I consider this a no-pressure game for the Cowboys. Not many people expect them to win this game, and, honestly, they don't have to. They have exceeded expectations by getting to 4-1, and after Seattle, they have four manageable games – three of them at home – before the bye week. If there's one thing working in the Cowboys' favor, I think it's that they can go up to CenturyLink Field and play loose, like a team with nothing to lose. I think DeMarco Murray will play well, but he'll fall short of 100 yards – mark me down for 83. I also think Tony Romo is going to play a clean, but unspectacular game. The difference will ultimately be Seattle's ability to move the ball on the Dallas defense. Russell Wilson is going to pick up some backbreaking third downs with his feet, and I think the Seahawks will score late to clinch a tight game. Seattle wins, something like 31-20.
Nick Eatman: A few weeks ago, in the middle of our radio podcast show "The Lunch Break," I made a prediction the Cowboys, who were sitting at 1-1 at the time, would beat the Seahawks in a few weeks up in Seattle. Little did I know this team would reel off four straight wins and be sitting atop the NFC leaders. For some reason, I felt better about a Cowboys team around 2-3 or 3-2 going into this place and securing a [embedded_ad]
win than I do here at 4-1. I know that seems backwards but this Cowboys team hasn't fared too well with matchups like this. Now, this is a new team and a new season and so far, the Cowboys are proving to us each week they're ready for the challenge. Forgive me for being a little bit hesitant. I think the defense plays really well but it'll be overshadowed by Seattle's ability to limit the Cowboys, and particularly the running game. I see DeMarco Murray getting around 65 yards and most of the passes will be short – giving Witten and Beasley a lot of grabs. This will be low scoring but I think Seattle has too much defense.