The Dallas Cowboys weren’t supposed to be this good, this soon. Facing teams like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Cincinnati Bengals early on, both of whom have made a Super Bowl appearance in the past two seasons, and still putting up a record of 3-1 is quite impressive. Doing so without your starting quarterback in those three wins is a downright miracle.
Coming off a 12-5 season in 2021, the Cowboys were by no means underdogs. But this is also a team that lost come major star power in the offseason with names like wide receiver Amari Cooper, defensive end Randy Gregory, and offensive tackle La’el Collins playing elsewhere in 2022.
Throw in several key injuries to top players like quarterback Dak Prescott, offensive tackle Tyron Smith, and wide receiver Michael Gallup, and no one would blame Dallas for starting the season 0-4 instead of 3-1.
Yet, somehow, the Cowboys have been able to scratch and claw their way to a winning record. After losing their Week One matchup against the Buccaneers, Dallas found a way to beat the Bengals, the New York Giants, and the Washington Commanders with backup quarterback Cooper Rush under center. And that’s due in large part to the play of their defense.
The Dallas defense has only allowed a single touchdown in each of their first four games to opposing offenses this season. And their allowed average of 15.5 points per game is the third lowest in the NFL. Ironically, it’s defense that’s also turning the NFC East into the most competitive division in football.
Here’s what Anthony Holzman-Escareno, Senior Researcher for NFL.com, recently wrote on the league’s official website about the overall play of the NFC East division and how it’s changing the narrative from it’s longtime NFC Least label.
” … the NFC East is flipping that reputation on its head, going 11-5 overall as the only division in football with a combined 10 wins. The revival has been led by defense. The Eagles, Cowboys, Giants and Commanders are allowing an average of 19.4 points and 322.4 yards per game, the lowest of any division in the NFL … this is the only division containing three teams with at least three wins. As of this moment, the records say the NFC Beast is the best division in football.”Anthony Holzman-Escareno, NFL.com, Senior Researcher
The fact Holzman-Escareno is calling the NFC East the best division in the NFL right now bodes well for the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys have been able to secure two divisional victories without starter Dak Prescott under center. And they could have their veteran passer back by the time the team is set to play the division-leading 4-0 Philadelphia Eagles in Week Six at Lincoln Financial Field in two weeks.