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Sullivan: It's Prescott's Rodeo, Irving's Stunning Game Among Thoughts

Some of the thoughts that run through an oversized, bald head:

• Here are some fourth-quarter numbers: David Irving with seven QB hurries, five QB hits, two sacks and a batted pass at the line of scrimmage. He also hit Jameis Winston's arm on the Jeff Heath interception. Ezekiel Elliott rushed for 78 yards and Dak Prescott was 6-for-6. Again, this was with the Cowboys trailing 20-17 entering those final 15 minutes. That's what Super Bowl-caliber teams do.

• Before delving back into the on-field stuff, the penalty on Zeke for jumping into The Salvation Army kettle was pathetic. Donations were down nationally last year, we're entering Christmas week, and a charity was trending on social media for most of Sunday night because of his act. Instead of talking any more about this, let's all donate a few dollars this week, whatever we can afford. If it's $21 to match Zeke's number, all the better.

• Irving should earn a second NFC Defensive Player of the Week honor, which is kind of mind-boggling considering he's been mostly mute the other 11 games he's played in. There is so much potential there. To watch him from the press box in that fourth quarter it was like Lawrence Taylor in Tecmo Bowl. The Buccaneers had no answers. They were double-teaming him every snap on the final possession and he forced two more hurries and a hit. Stunning to witness. Maybe this is the breakthrough.

• Not hearing promising reports on DeMarcus Lawrence's back, so would be all the better if Irving stepped up. Benson Mayowa gave another stellar performance, his third straight, and rookie Maliek Collins played much better than his numbers, four hurries and two hits.

• OK, it's time for the quarterback stuff to stop. I've been guilty of it myself. It's done. This game has more than earned Dak Prescott the next two, and at that point it's been his rodeo this season, let him keep riding. The second-highest single-game completion percentage in NFL history after a week's worth of talk, and his press conference answers couldn't have been better.[embeddedad0]

• We talk so much about turnovers, and yeah, it's nice to have a few, but the Giants and Seahawks both have minus ratios this season and the Vikings entered Sunday ranked second in the league at plus-12. So we all need to chill a little.

• Almost impossible to tell on the telecast, but Dez Bryant was open a whole bunch, was creating separation and was physical, hitting defenders 20 yards downfield when the play was on the other side. I know it sounds ridiculous to say about an All-Pro player, but it helps to keep him involved and engaged early.

Yes, that's the second time in his career, first since his rookie campaign, that Dan Bailey missed two fields, but we're not talking chip-shots. One would have tied his career long; the other from 52 had plenty of leg. He's fine.

• Liked how they involved Darren McFadden and Lance Dunbar contributed. Just not entirely sure what Alfred Morris did to warrant being benched.

• Giants are a dangerous team, so is Green Bay. The NFC is wide open no matter who earns those first-week byes or home field. Dallas has been somewhat inconsistent offensively. They went more than 60 minutes of game time between points before that first field goal in the second quarter. The defense, while performing miraculously, needs to catch a few breaks health-wise. Speaking of, decent chance Morris Claiborne plays against the Lions.

• Sean Lee isn't just worthy of his second straight Pro Bowl nod this season. He should warrant serious consideration for All-Pro honors. A few weeks after he tore his ACL at OTAs a couple of years ago, I walked into Jason Garrett's office and the first thing I mentioned was how badly I felt about the injury. And Garrett said without hesitation, as we were still shaking hands, "He's going to help us win a lot of football games, I promise you that." A lot of folks thought otherwise at the time.

• Late in the fourth quarter, that's as loud as I've heard AT&T Stadium, and I've been to the Super Bowl, the U2 concert and a bunch of other stuff. The 93,000-plus did their part after a somewhat quiet and late-arriving start. The tailgating, not so much. Lot of empty parking spots with the chilly temps.

• Jason Witten with a unique line of 10 targets, 10 receptions, 51 yards, a long of 8 yards and his second lost fumble in five years. Prescott shouldn't have thrown that ball, though, at least not to Witten, who took a crunching hit from an awkward angle.

• Zack Martin really needs to be careful. At some point the police are just going to come on the field and put the cuffs on him for assault and battery. He's absolutely abusing starting NFL defensive linemen. Watch the coach's tape, and he's running 10 yards downfield after the initial hit.

Check out Jeff Sullivan's column each week in Dallas Cowboys Star Magazine. Find out more at You can also follow Jeff on Twitter, @SullyBaldHead, or email him at

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