By Alex Al-Kazzaz
Disaster struck immediately for the Dallas Cowboys. Offensive Guard Connor McGovern suffered an injury right out of the blue and it appears he suffered a high ankle sprain, which means he's out four to six weeks. Late in the game, Dak Prescott went out with a hand injury. After the game, Jerry Jones said that Prescott needs surgery on his right thumb, meaning he'll be out for several weeks.
While the offensive line had problems, they're not fully to blame. Prescott himself did not play well, finishing 14-for-29 for 134 yards with no touchdowns and one interception, which was a mistake on his part. The running game showed up at the beginning, but it was apparently abandoned. The passing game was inconsistent and with such a thin wide receiver corps, moving forward, there's likely no massive improvement coming soon. And finally, the play-calling was out of line, but as far as Moore's play-calling being a problem, what else is new?
Dallas's three points in this loss are the team's lowest in a season opener since 1989 when Dallas started the season with a 28-0 loss to the New Orleans Saints.
The defense did very well. Despite the serious lack of support from the offense, the defense did not let up. However, considering how banged up Tampa's offensive line was, the Cowboys rushing defense allowed Leonard Fournette to pick up a total of 127 yards on 21 carries is a cause for concern. In addition, Tom Brady was sacked only twice, both times by Micah Parsons. Brady went 18-for-27 with one touchdown and one interception, throwing for 212 yards. For the defense, forcing a turnover off of Brady is a great thing, but to fail to capitalize is the unfortunate part.
It truly could have been worse as the defense forced the Bucs to settle for several field goals. Tampa could have very well had a 28-3 lead going into half-time. But the defense kept Dallas in the game, so they deserve credit.
The Cowboys face Cincinatti next. With Cincinatti coming off a surprising and frustrating loss to Pittsburgh, the Bengals would love nothing more than to take that anger and frustration out on a doomed Cowboys team.
From how things are right now for Dallas, it's going to be a long season of pure frustration and disappointment.