The season has been over for a few weeks now for the Dallas Cowboys, and despite the disappointment of how it ended there were plenty of good moments to remember. For the offense, it might have taken a handful of weeks to get going, but the Cowboys wound up the No. 1 scoring team in the league at almost 30 points a game.
A large part of the offensive success was because of the passing game, which ranked third in the league in yards and helped quarterback Dak Prescott lead the NFL in passing touchdowns. There were some big plays and improbable catches to aid in their passing attack. Here are the five best catches for the 2023 season for the Cowboys.
CeeDee Lamb's one-handed grab vs the Giants
The Cowboys hit their stride in the passing game at mid-season when Prescott started targeting his best wide receiver relentlessly. Lamb made some big catches on the year, but perhaps none was better than his one-handed snag against the New York Giants in Week 10.
Dallas was coming off a heartbreaking loss to the Philadelphia Eagles and they needed to start quickly against the Giants. On their first series, the offense was facing a 2nd-and-9 from their own 42-yard line when Prescott lobbed a ball down the sideline intended for Lamb. Despite being interfered with, Lamb reached out and made a ridiculous catch with one hand.
— JayOnSC (@JayOnSC) November 13, 2023
The play resulted in a 30-yard gain and a first down in a game the Cowboys would win, 49-17. Lamb caught 11 balls for 151 yards and a score in what was the first of three consecutive games with at least 10 catches and 150 yards receiving, an NFL record.
Brandin Cooks starts a trend with touchdown vs Chargers
Dallas was not only struggling to find their offensive groove early, but Prescott and his newest receiving weapon also weren’t clicking when the team played the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 6. The veteran Cooks and Prescott took some time to get going, but the breakthrough came on the two-yard score in the fourth quarter against the Chargers.
DAK PRESCOTT ➡️ BRANDIN COOKS pic.twitter.com/KKv5a0FC2N
— Dallas Nation 🏆 (@TheDallasNation) October 17, 2023
The touchdown was Cooks’ first with the Cowboys and gave the team a lead in a game they absolutely needed to win. It also kicked off a play the offense would go to often in the red zone, the QB-WR duo had six touchdowns off the same look during the season. This catch and score helped Prescott and Cooks kickstart their connection for the rest of the 2023 season.
Jake Ferguson's fingertip touchdown vs Rams
Coming out of their bye week, the Cowboys looked like a different passing offense, and that began with a Week 8 win over the Los Angeles Rams. After a rough few plays where the offensive line struggled to block the Rams defensive front, Prescott found a rhythm on the team’s first series.
The drive ended with a pinpoint pass from Prescott to tight end Jake Ferguson. Prescott threw it where only Ferguson could catch it and the emerging star made the beautiful fingertip grab for the 18-yard touchdown.
TOUCHDOWN COWBOYS ⭐️
Dak finds Jake Ferguson in the endzone 🙌
📺: FOX pic.twitter.com/TQfxUCDRwe
— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLonFOX) October 29, 2023
The Cowboys took a 7-0 lead early in the game and never looked back. It was a play the offense had been just missing on for much of the year up until that point, the TE up the seam in the red zone, but this time it worked to perfection with Ferguson’s sticky hands.
Just as it did a game earlier with Cooks, the hookup between Ferguson and Prescott grew from this point on. Ferguson’s targets and production jumped from here to the end of the season, proving the second-year TE had the ability to be one of the best in the league at the position.
Michael Gallup's toe drag catch vs Eagles
It wasn’t his best season, yet veteran wide receiver Michael Gallup had some big moments during the 2023 season and perhaps his best play was a catch down the sideline against the Eagles in Week 14.
The Cowboys were leading by 17 in the fourth quarter, but the Eagles had them in a 3rd-and-5 where one stop could’ve given them life. Instead of running the ball, Dallas decided to step on their throat by passing it and Prescott threw a dime to Gallup, who tapped his toes down as he was diving for the 39-yard catch.
Still not over this absolutely beautiful throw from Dak Prescott 😮💨
And not to forget the great catch by the man himself Michael Gallup 🔥 pic.twitter.com/gNWv4EO09O
— FergSZN (@FergSZN) December 11, 2023
It was a beautiful throw and catch by the duo, who ended any notion of a comeback, and it might have been Gallup’s best play on the year. The 2023 season wasn’t kind to the veteran WR, but he still had a few signature Gallup moments; this was one of them.
Lamb's 92-yard touchdown
This might not have been a spectacular catch, but it was perhaps the best play of the season for the Cowboys. With the team down 3-0 late in the first quarter, the offense stalling and facing a third-and-13 from their own eight-yard line, Prescott bounced off a would-be sack, escaped the pocket and found his favorite receiver near midfield. The throw landed softly into Lamb’s hands as he was breaking free from the defender, and he jogged the rest of the way for the 92-yard score.
Dak Prescott ➡️ CeeDee Lamb
One 92-yard touchdown later and the Cowboys have taken the lead back from the Lions 👀
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) December 31, 2023
The touchdown gave the Cowboys the lead and was the longest play for the Cowboys all season. It also thrust Lamb into the franchise’s history book in game where he broke the record for catches and yards in a single season.
Catches don’t get much better than the one Lamb had in Week 17.