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It’s Time To Make Fun Of The Bamboozling Disgrace That Is The Dallas Cowboys

8:14 PM EST on January 14, 2024

Head coach Mike McCarthy of the Dallas Cowboys watches action during the second half of the NFC Wild Card Playoff game against the Green Bay Packers
Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

Whatever the stakes, whatever the postseason expectations—do not underestimate the Dallas Cowboys' ability to take a very winnable situation and convert it into pure humiliation. Head coach Mike McCarthy and his 12-5 team proved this crucial lesson in Sunday's wild-card home loss to the lowest-seeded team in the NFC playoff field.

The second-seeded Cowboys, 8-0 at home in the regular season, orchestrated a spectacular, astonishing chokejob as they lost to the seventh-seeded Green Bay Packers, 48-32. The only reason for the final score being close was because the Cowboys started to play competently in the fourth quarter, when all the pressure had dissipated and the Packers had brought in some backups. On the very first possession, Green Bay's offense put together an eight-minute drive that ended with an Aaron Jones rushing touchdown. From there, it just got worse for Dallas.

The Cowboys were out of sorts from the beginning. The offense looked stressed and tense, like a 7-0 deficit in the first quarter was the biggest challenge in the world. Quarterback Dak Prescott and his star receiver CeeDee Lamb had a few animated discussions to try and get on the same page. At one point early in the game, McCarthy had his own chat with Lamb. This team was visibly not ready.

The fearsome defense coached by defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, whose likelihood of a head coaching gig plummeted in a matter of hours, kept leaving guys wide open. When Dontayvion Wicks caught a touchdown on third-and-7 to build Green Bay's lead to 20-0, it felt difficult but still possible for the Cowboys. Then Prescott responded with a pick-six:

The comedic timing of that turnover, of all of it, really—this was one of the funniest NFL games in recent memory. It got out of hand for the Cowboys so suddenly, and they had to sit in that embarrassment for so long. Skip Bayless pleaded for Trey Lance somewhere in the third quarter. Packers quarterback Jordan Love finished with 272 passing yards, three touchdowns, and a 157.2 QB rating. Jones had three rushing TDs. When the Fox broadcast cut to the Cowboys owner's suite, Jerry Jones looked like he had seen his own day of reckoning.

Man, that was beautiful. Recrimination season came earlier than expected. It is Here We Gover. Fire Mike McCarthy immediately.

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