NFL

Prescott reveals Cowboys unaware of NFC East title triumph before Washington rout

By Sports Desk December 27, 2021

Dak Prescott revealed the Dallas Cowboys were unaware they had already clinched the NFC title before a 56-14 rout of the Washington Football Team on Sunday.

Prescott starred by completing 28 of 39 attempted passes for 330 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions as Dallas registered 50 points for the first time since Super Bowl XXVII in the 1992 season.

The Dallas QB recorded his fourth career game with 300 yards, four passing touchdowns and no interceptions, which is the most by any player in franchise history, going past Tony Romo (three). 

Dallas' 56-point haul was the third most in a game by franchise records and the most in a regular-season fixture since 1980 as Mike McCarthy's side scored more than 40 points for the fourth time this season.

The Las Vegas Raiders' victory over the Denver Broncos had already secured Prescott's third divisional title in six seasons as the Cowboys' starting quarterback, but the 28-year-old claimed he was unaware of the triumph before the game.

"I don't know if many people knew that we clinched before the game," Prescott said. "I didn't. That's kind of what my message was talking to the guys in the circle up right there [before the game], going out winning this division. 

"I don't know if we're in the world or business of trying to send messages more than we're just trying to get better, day in and day out, game after game and make sure that we're playing our best ball and peaking at the right time heading into this tournament."

Asked whether Dallas had arrested a slump after concerns over their offensive abilities on Prescott's return from a calf strain, he responded: "You tell me. I never said we were in a slump. Those were your words. 

"So I think it would be hard for you to say that now, but, yeah, tonight was a great performance."

Dallas scored on offense, defense and special teams for the first time since 2012 as they became the first NFL outfit to do so this season, much to the delight of defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence who hailed an almost perfect showing.

"I feel like we showed ourselves that we can play a complete game but we still have a lot that we can build on," Lawrence said.

"Being able to go out there and dominate on all three phases of the game, shoot, we just got to keep building on that and get better from it."

The Cowboys extended to a four-game winning streak, though McCarthy's team need to win their final two games and require the Green Bay Packers to lose at least once to confirm home advantage for the playoffs.

The NFC East champions next face the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday before closing the regular season at the Philadelphia Eagles on January 9.

Related items

  • Mac Jones says emotion got the better of him in Patriots' loss to the Bills Mac Jones says emotion got the better of him in Patriots' loss to the Bills

    Mac Jones said he let emotions get the better of him but was not aiming his frustration at anyone in particular in the New England Patriots' 24-10 defeat to the Buffalo Bills.

    After a promising rookie season in 2021, quarterback Jones and the offense in general has struggled for a Patriots side who are now 6-6 and facing a struggle to make the playoffs.

    During the game, Jones appeared to be caught saying "throw the f*****g ball! The quick game sucks!" during the broadcast of the game on Amazon Prime Video.

    "Obviously, I just kind of let my emotions get to me," Jones said. "What I said was about throwing it deeper within the short game. I got to execute that part better. 

    "But it's the short game that we kept going to, which is working. But I felt like we needed chunk plays. I shouted that out to kind of get everyone going. That's emotional. That's football. I'm passionate about this game.

    "Obviously, you don't want to let your emotions get the best of you. I think that's pretty much it. It wasn't directed at anybody. Just emotion coming out. We kind of needed a spark."

    Jones added that the coaching team, including Matt Patricia who makes the calls in the plays to him, were aligned with his thinking.

    "It was just [saying], 'let's go for it, let's be aggressive, let's take those shots. Just go down fighting,'" Jones added.

    "Matty P was on the same page. We kind of did it there at the end and moved it a little bit more."

    Jones was 22-of-36 for 195 yards and a touchdown against the Bills.

    Overall the Patriots rank 31st for time in the red zone, 25th for third-down conversion, and 27th for first downs gained per game this season.

    "When you're playing from behind against a pretty good team and a good offense, you need to go out there and make better plays," Jones said. 

    "That starts with me. Definitely wasn't good enough by me. I didn't do a good enough job of getting ahead early, making it work. It's tough to watch the defense play a great game, not being able to give them anything back."

  • 'We're not blinking' - Josh Allen has the playoff-bound Buffalo Bills playing with 'urgency' 'We're not blinking' - Josh Allen has the playoff-bound Buffalo Bills playing with 'urgency'

    Josh Allen told reporters after Thursday's 24-10 win against the New England Patriots that this year's Buffalo Bills are playing with an added 'sense of urgency' after narrowly missing out on last year's AFC Championship game.

    The Bills were too strong for the Patriots, allowing no touchdowns after the first quarter in what turned into a relatively smooth outing on the road in Foxborough.

    With the win, the Bills improved their record to an AFC East-leading 9-3, while the 8-3 Miami Dolphins will get a chance to join them if they can defeat the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.

    Despite their strong record, it was only their first win against a divisional opponent this season after previous losses to the Dolphins and New York Jets.

    Following three consecutive games away from home, the Bills will now host both the Jets and the Dolphins in back-to-back fixtures, and Allen said the whole squad is itching to get back to Buffalo.

    "It's going to be awesome," he said. "We missed out on a home game because we had to leave [due to a snowstorm in Week 11], so I know Bills mafia is chomping at the bit to get back in the stadium with us.

    "We're going to need them, this stretch that we've got coming up, we understand it means a lot moving forward. We’ve got to find ways to go win some football games."

    He went on to talk about how the Bills are no longer content just being a playoff team, and with the roster they have, they know this season is a golden opportunity to bring home the franchise's first ever Super Bowl.

    "I think [what's different] is the sense of urgency we have," he said. "We're 9-3, and everything we want is in front of us.

    "Every time we step out onto the field we're trying to be the best version of ourselves, and coach McDermott does a great job of letting us be ourselves.

    "We've got a great locker room, guys with a lot of leadership, there's been no panic. Von [Miller] says it all the time – we're not blinking.

    "We're just trying to find ways to win football games, no matter what it takes to win a game, that's what we're trying to do." 

    The former MVP favourite is no longer considered one of the top contenders for the league's most prestigious individual honour after a month-long battle with a lingering elbow injury, but he is not using it as an excuse.

    "A lot of time in the training room making sure I'm ready to go, but come game time, that goes to the back of my mind," he said.

    "I'm just focused on trying to make plays for this team, whichever way that I can, whether it's running or throwing, and getting it to our guys on the outside.

    "We've got some of the best guys in the league, and the more times we can get them the ball, the better it's going to be for us.

    "I appreciate who we have in our training room, they've done a tremendous job… they really put in a lot of hours."

    With one more win this season, the Bills will have posted four consecutive campaigns of at least 10 victories. The only other time in franchise history that has occurred was from 1990-1993, where they lost four Super Bowls in a row.

  • Josh Allen's Bills brush off early scare, dominate the Patriots 24-10 Josh Allen's Bills brush off early scare, dominate the Patriots 24-10

    The Buffalo Bills were not rattled by an early explosive touchdown, going on to ultimately dominate the New England Patriots 24-10 in Thursday's AFC East showdown.

    New England threatened to put up a strong fight against one of the Super Bowl favourites, jumping ahead 7-3 in the first quarter after rookie Marcus Jones took a wide receiver screen 48 yards to the house. 

    It was just Jones' first offensive snap of his career, with the former college cornerback making a name for himself after his game-winning punt return touchdown against the New York Jets in Week 11.

    But that would be the only points the Patriots would put on the board until a consolation field goal with under two minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.

    The middle stages of the contest were entirely one-sided, with Josh Allen connecting on two touchdown passes in the second period to jump out to a 17-7 halftime lead, never looking back.

    Allen's first touchdown was a simple one from the eight-yard line, identifying top receiver Stefon Diggs in man coverage before finding him in the back corner of the endzone. 

    His second was more spectacular, as he left his feet for a jump-pass near the sideline, rifling it back across his body to find Gabriel Davis for another eight-yard touchdown.

    Allen completed 22 of his 33 passes for 223 yards and two touchdowns, with his only turnovers coming from a strip-sack by Josh Uche. Diggs caught seven of his nine targets for 92 yards and a score, while Devin Singletary carried 13 times for 51 yards and the game's final touchdown in the fourth quarter.

    Buffalo are now 9-3, which their division rivals the Miami Dolphins can match with a win over the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.