On Sunday, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott threw a pair of interceptions in a loss to the Houston Texans that saw another tepid performance from the Dallas offense.
When the Cowboys decided to punt on fourth-and-1 at the Houston 42-yard-line in overtime, criticism shifted from Prescott to the coaching staff. Even owner Jerry Jones got in on the act, calling out the decision by head coach Jason Garrett in a story published on the team’s own web site.
Report: Hurns called Cowboys play ‘the worst play call’
So when ESPN’s Josina Anderson shared Wednesday that wide receiver Allen Hurns piled on the criticism, telling her that a play call on a Prescott interception was “the worst play call” to make in the situation, it made waves in Cowboys country.
This is bad. Very bad. pic.twitter.com/9gUu9cwmnE
— Blogging The Boys (@BloggingTheBoys) October 10, 2018
Hurns doubles down
Given the chance to clarify his critique at practice Wednesday, Hurns did not back down.
“I didn’t question the play calling,” Hurns said while questioning the play calling. “Everyone knows that’s not a good call against two man. Unfortunately for us, that was their only snap in two-man. It was just an unfortunate situation. But I ain’t questioning the play calling.”
Hurns can say out loud that he’s not questioning the play calling all he wants, but it doesn’t hold much weight when he’s one step away from pointing his finger directly at Scott Linehan for what “everyone knows” is a bad call.
Blame game is strong in Dallas
It’s the latest drama in a season that sees the Cowboys sitting at 2-3 with the league’s 28th-ranked offense led by a regressing Prescott. The third-year signal caller has performed progressively worse since his breakout 2016 rookie season that led the Cowboys to part ways with Tony Romo.
The Cowboys rank 30th in the league with 172 passing yards per game while Prescott has thrown five touchdowns and four interceptions through five games. His passer rating this season sits at 81.4, a steep drop from the 104.9 number he posted as a rookie.
Blame is being spread around.
Wide receiver Cole Beasley took a veiled but clear shot at Prescott after Week 3, telling the Fort Worth Star-Telegram “We’re just getting open; that’s all we can do.”
Dez Bryant, Jerry Jones get in on the act
Former receiver Dez Bryant has been sparring with Jones in the media over the definition of a No. 1 receiver as both recognize how putrid the Dallas output is.
And now Hurns is all but calling out Linehan by name.
“People ask a question I tell him how it is,” Hurns said. “I’m not throwing anyone under the bus, but as far as me, I’m just going tell it how it is. For real. For real.”
Hurns doesn’t blame Dak
Hurns, who has tallied eight receptions for 84 yards this season is certainly ripe for criticism himself and stopped short of blaming Prescott while laying cover for a subpar receiving corps lacking a standout playmaker.
“When we come out and say we’re creating separation, it’s not a shot at Dak,” Hurns said. “We’re just saying we’re controlling what we can. There are times we’re getting open, and he’s getting sacked. There are times when he throws it at us, and I wasn’t open. It goes across the board. When we say it’s not us, we’re saying it’s not just us.”
Ezekiel Elliot: What finger pointing?
Running back Ezekiel Elliott, one of the few bright spots of the Dallas offense, insists that there is no finger pointing in the Cowboys locker room.
“One thing that’s good about this group that we have in this locker room is that there hasn’t been any finger pointing at all,” Elliott said Wednesday. “You know what I mean? I mean, even when as an offense we’ve struggled this year and when we go up to the defense like, ‘We’re sorry we didn’t hold up our end,’ they’re like, ‘We need to do more.
“So there’s enough accountability in this locker room that there’s not going to be any finger pointing.”
Insisting that there is not finger pointing is generally a sure sign that finger pointing is, indeed, happening.
Things not getting easier in Dallas
Thanks aren’t likely to get any better this week for the Cowboys when they take on the Jacksonville Jaguars’ top-ranked passing defense.
Barring a minor football miracle Sunday, expect plenty more opportunities for criticism come Monday of an offense that is almost completely broken from the top down.
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