Trevor Lawrence and Jason Garrett

USA Today

Cowboys 13, Saints 10

Four words: How. Bout. Them. Cowboys!

November 30, 2018 - 9:09 am

Cowboys 13, Saints 10. 

Four words: How. Bout. Them. Cowboys!

There have been some pretty stunning games this season, but I can’t remember the last time I was this shocked by a result. Genuinely shocked. And so were the Saints. 

But none of us should’ve been. Let’s go back to earlier this week and the words of one Demarcus Lawrence: "They’re going to have to match our intensity. Bleep, for 60 minutes straight. If you hit a motherbleeper in the mouth and then they ain't doing what they're regularly doing, putting up 50 points, they start to get a little distressed. Now you got them where you want them at, and then you bleeping choke their ass out."

That wasn’t a guy talking about a theory. That was a guy predicting the future. He just told you how the game would go before it did. And everyone laughed. And said that only ensured that the Cowboys would get their asses kicked by the alleged best team in the NFL. Instead, the boys went out and did exactly, exactly what Lawrence said they’d do.  That game went exactly with the way Lawrence said it would. When the last time anyone dropped that kind of lava prior to a big game and then went out and backed it up like that? The last time. I mean, has it ever happened? Because it did last night.

Because the Saints did not match the Cowboys intensity, bleep, for sixty minutes straight. The cowboys hit a motherbleeper in the mouth and the saints stopped doing what they’re regularly doing, putting up 50 points, and they did start getting a little distressed. And then the Cowboys’ defense bleeping choked their ass out. 

That wasn’t just a win for Dallas that was an epic win for Dallas. They didn’t just beat the Saints, they held them to 10 points. Ten freaking points. And seven of those ten points came after Randy Gregory had one of his numerous brain freezes last night. If he doesn’t do that, the Saints, who’d been averaging close to 40, might’ve been held to three. 

And Demarcus Lawrence was a huge reason for it. He spoke it into existence and then played it into existence. 4 tackles, a sack, a quarterback hurry, and a forced fumble. And the legend that is Rod Marinelli loves Lawrence, quote: “His relentless motor is unbelievable. Don't just look at the stats. Just look at him play football. It's the best in the league. I can't believe somebody plays harder.”

I can’t believe that somebody does, but if somebody does, that somebody is his teammate, Jaylon Smith. Or Leighton Vander Esch. Or both. They’re clearly the best tandem backers in the game: no one runs to the ball like these two cats do. Those two freaks flat out dominated.

That’s why the Saints were in the first half for the first time since 2014. Dallas held New Orleans to less than 200 yards of total offense. They turned the Drew Brees Saints into the Nathan Peterman Bills. I’m not sure that I’ve ever seen anything like that. 

I know I’ve never seen Drew Brees that rattled and that out of rhythm. I’ve never seen him look awkward or confused. Until last night. I kept waiting for them to snap out of it, and they never did. 

Even just ahead of the two minute warning, when New Orleans got the ball back, I was already preparing myself for the Saints drive to victory. It wasn’t a matter of would there be a game-winning reception, it was a matter of who would make it. And the answer was: Jourdan Lewis.

And after watching that game I have one question: how the hell were the Dallas Cowboys barely over .500 going into that game? And how the hell are they so good right now?

And the answer to that first question is coaching and the answer to the second is coaching.

I’m not totally sure how Jason Garrett could have this much talent on his roster and have three wins before November. Jerry Jones said after the game that Sean Payton is a “great coach” “an underline great coach.” And that Jason Garrett “won a big game tonight. I’ll just leave it at that. He won a big game tonight.”

That’s kind of weird. You’d think Jerry would be looking to hype his guy and when he was asked about being conservative in his praise of Garrett, Jones said: What? What? I’m not. Give him everything you should give him for having just beaten the top-rated team in the NFL. You’re the wordsmith. Give it to him. I’m serious. Give it to him, yes. Because we know how tough it is when it goes the other way. But give that to him, for sure.”

Okay, I am the wordsmith and I will smith these words: last night’s win might have raised more questions about Garrett as a coach than they answered. Like here’s a question: where has that team been all season? 

It’s weird to say, but seeing them beat the number one seed in the NFC is almost a bad thing, because it makes me wonder why they were 3-5 at one point and why they aren’t running away with a garbage division. And the only reason I can think of is the head coach. Why did it take until November before Ezekiel Elliott really started looking like Ezekiel Elliott again? And why did Dak Prescott look so awful at times this year?

But I will give him this: he sure knows how to hire a defensive coordinator. Because that was an all-time legendary performance.  

Because Rodney’s defense is nasty. It is fast. And they get to the ball in a hurry. And if you didn’t know that Rod Marinelli could coach the hell out of a defense, you haven’t been paying attention. 

Of course the pride of Rosemead would be the guy to take down one of the best offenses in NFL history. Because his shovel is sharp. His pick is sharp. And his will is outstanding. That was a huge win for Dallas and for Rodney. 

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: when is Rod Marinelli finally going to get the respect he deserves? And my answer is: I better not have to ask that question ever again. And one more question: when is Jerry going to name Rod his head coach. Because it’s something he should have done weeks ago. And if he doesn’t someone else will.