Turkey Day Massacre: Washington vs Dallas Week 12 Analysis

Post Game Analysis

Dallas take a seat, there is a new Sheriff in the NFC East by the name of the Washington Football Team. After the Turkey Day Massacre, Washington is now undefeated against Dallas and on their first two-game winning streak this season. We are number one in the NFC East with a 4-7 record. 

Ha ha, cry NFC East, cry

Washington exceeded expectations and put on an absolute show for the full bellies across the nation. From prominent defensive play to the offensive onslaught, Washington Coaching and players pulled out all the stops for a remarkable win. 

Of course, Dallas played a great role in their loss with horrendous play calling. Cowboys fans are not timid to express their feelings about the play calling on Twitter and boy were they heated. Very understandable to feel that way when your HC decides to throw the ball on 4th and inches instead of giving the ball to your maxed contract RB, Ezekiel Elliot. 

On their 34 yard line, Mike McCarthy decides to test Washington’s 4th down defense by throwing instead of running. Mistake number one! With the failed attempt, Washington currently ranks 4th in the league when it comes to stopping the opponent’s 4th down conversions (37.50%). 

“Zeke who?”

Zeke fumbles the football on a 2nd and 4 to start the third quarter. Elliot went to strive for extra yardage and the ball just pops out. For Dallas fans, they wish Zeke would drop this habit of fumbling the ball and the offensive line is not to blame. With his turnover yesterday, Zeke has now fumbled 8 times. Elliot is now the 3rd Cowboys player to lose 5 fumbles in one season since 2010. 

He is alongside Dak Prescott who fumbled 6 times in 2018 and DeMarco Murray, who lost 5 in 2014. 

According to PFF, Tony Pollard is graded higher than Zeke through 11 weeks with a score of 81 compared to Zeke’s 69. 

The highlight play of the game was the bonehead decision to go for it on 4th down in their territory for a second time. The play was absolutely bizarre, if the reader has not seen this play, stop reading…go watch and come back. 

On Washington’s 24 yard line, Dallas decides to fake punt with a sweep and was stopped way behind first down yardage. Killing any momentum of a comeback on Turkey Day. 

Washington Defense

It was said last week and it will be said again this week, the Wolves known as the Washington Defensive Line are the real deal. Washington’s defense is responsible for Dallas’ 4-13 third-down efficiency and only allowed one of four 4th downs to be converted. Dallas only rushed for 60 yards this week which is shocking because Dallas seemed to establish a running game against the Vikings. 

Washington sacked Andy Dalton 3 times. Dalton completed 25 out of his 35 passes for 215 yards, 1 TD, and 1 INT. His interception was caught by Montez Sweat and taken back to the house for a defensive touchdown. There must have been something in the air because JJ Watt (Texans Defensive End) also caught an interception from the line to score a touchdown. 

Let’s settle this now, Chase Young is not a bust and it is egregious to think so. Young’s numbers may not be “perfect” but the energy he brings to this team is priceless. Over the past two weeks, he’s had notable tackles and sacks that should turn those bust theories to G.O.A.T tales. 

Tim Settle for President! Ronald Darby needs to get it together. Darby got absolutely burned by Amari Cooper twice. 

Washington Offense

After Washington’s first three and out, Scott Turner (OFC) turned up the offense. Washington’s recent ability to settle the QB turmoil clouding the organization since Week 4 has allowed Scott Turner to shake things up a little. 

Not too long ago, Logan Thomas was our reserve Quarterback if Alex Smith was to go down. The funny thing about that is, Logan Thomas is our current Tight End. Thomas, 6-6 250lb, was the starting QB for the Virginia Tech Hokies in the early 2010s. Over the past few weeks, Turner has been using Thomas in more unorthodox ways and it has proved wonders. Logan Thomas got to showcase his QB arm during Dallas when he completed a 28-yard pass to Terry McLaurin. Thomas has also converted a few fourth down QB sneaks with his frame. 

There were two gems picked in the third round by the Washington Football Team and their names are Antonio Gibson and Terry “Scary” McLaurin. These two dogs were responsible for over 200 yards of offense. 

Yesterday’s game ball goes to Antonio Gibson, who is now the 1st rookie to score 3 touchdowns on Thanksgiving since 1998. The last person to do that was Randy Moss and ironically that was also against Dallas. Gibson rushed for 115 yards and caught for 21 yards. 

Gibson has a rushing touchdown in 5 straight games with 9 total this season. The rookie is on pace to break the current record held by Alfred Morris who scored 13 in his rookie season with Washington. There are 5 games left and this record will be shattered by the star with the Million Dollar Smile. 

McLaurin had another huge week with 7 receptions caught for 92 yards. McLaurin did not score a touchdown this week but he saved a touchdown. Alex Smith threw an interception at the 50-yard line to Jaylon Smith and it looked like he was going to take it to the house. McLaurin who ironically was open on the play proceeded to put the jets into third gear to stop Smith from scoring a pick-6. Without Terry’s efforts, Dallas would have tied the game and potentially won. 

In 11 games played, Terry has 69 receptions for 963 yards. Placing him first on the most receptions yards by 2nd-year WRs list.

Alex Smith completed 73 percent of his passes for 149 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. Thursday’s win gives him a record of 2-1 as a starter and the chemistry with McLaurin should be noted. Two peas in a pod. 

Sidenote: Shoutout to Haskins! We see the growth and maturity.

Overall, Washington played like a team and kept communication high to secure a win and the current #1 spot in the NFC East. The schedule going forward will be their most difficult string of games of the season. Washington will face Pittsburgh, San Francisco, and Seattle. Steps backward will be very detrimental to the development of this team and success moving forward. 

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

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