Cooper Rush became the first Cowboys quarterback in team history to win his first four starts as Dallas pummeled division-rival Washington to a final score of 25-10 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.
Rush turned in his third-straight victory with a two-touchdown, zero interception performance aided by excellent special teams play and a defense that is quickly becoming one of the league’s most fearsome.
The Cowboys opened the day with short drives, two of which ended in long field goals. Kicker Brett Maher is in his first season with the Cowboys after being cut following the 2019 season. Maher won the starting job in the preseason and has been excellent so far. He hit four field goals against Washington with no misses, scoring from 53, 45, 28, and a 29-yarder that iced the game in the fourth quarter. Maher’s only mistake in the game was a blocked extra point on the Cowboys’ first touchdown.
Michael Gallup returned to the receiving group after undergoing rehab for a torn ACL he suffered late last season. Gallup’s first catch of the game was a 15-yard pickup and a nine-yard catch for a touchdown. The score was set up when Rush was flushed from the pocket and moved to his right. Gallup broke off his inside route to turn toward the corner, giving Rush an opportunity.
The Dallas defense under Dan Quinn continued to play at a high level against Washington. Quarterback Carson Wentz was on the run much of the day as his protection broke down against the rush of Micah Parsons, Dorance Armstrong, Dante Fowler Jr., and Neville Gallimore. Gallimore and Fowler both recorded sacks in the game. Wentz was held to 170 yards passing and was hit 11 times.
The Commanders overcame an early 6-0 deficit with a touchdown pass from Wentz to Jahan Dotson in the second quarter, but the lead would be short-lived. The Cowboys responded with a touchdown to take a 12-7 lead when Wentz tested Cowboys corner Trevon Diggs on a deep pass. Diggs intercepted the pass for his second takeaway of the year.
The pick was not the only spectacular play Diggs made against Washington. Perhaps two of the most important plays of the game involved Diggs, both on fourth down as the Commanders were attempting to close a two-score lead in the fourth quarter.
The first was a pass on fourth-and-15 to the endzone where Wentz lobbed a pass to receiver Terry McLaurin, but Diggs elevated and slapped the ball out of bounds. It was the first of two turnovers-on-downs caused by Diggs.
The next offensive drive for the Commanders ended when Wentz missed a receiver and was picked off by Cowboys rookie Daron Bland, the first of his career. The next Commander’s drive came down to a fourth-and-two at the Washington 44. Wentz challenged Diggs again and was denied. Diggs got just enough of the ball to deflect it, preventing McLaurin from completing the catch. While the Commanders would get the ball one last time, the opportunity to come back against Dallas had passed.
The Cowboys advanced to 3-1 and 2-0 in the NFC East with victories over New York and Washington. The Cowboys travel to the West Coast next week to face the Los Angeles Rams. Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones has hinted that the Rams game may be the earliest that injured QB Dak Prescott may return, but with Rush playing at an elite level, it seems more likely that Prescott will sit until at least Week 6.
way to cowboy’s great win over THOSE REDSKINS