Dallas Cowboys Week 3 Grades: Aldon Smith, Trevon Diggs, and more

(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /

Re-watching the game to grade some of the the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday afternoon’s contest in Seattle

The Dallas Cowboys lost a close one to Seattle on Sunday but not everything went poorly for the team. A handful of players stepped up and delivered noteworthy performances that deserve our recognition this Monday morning.

To be fair, these are preliminary grades since the All-22 has yet to be released and the broadcast has obvious holes in it’s angles. But going on what we can see (both numbers and broadcast) we can safely draw a few conclusions regarding how things went down and how players played.

So let’s start with some good, shall we?

Aldon Smith (Grade: A): I’d give an A+ if I believed in them. Three weeks into the season Aldon Smith has exceeded even the loftiest of expectations. He tallied eight pressures and three sacks on Sunday and now leads the NFL in sacks. After nearly half a decade away from the game – amazing.

Trevon Diggs (Grade: D): Cowboys Nation is pretty high on the second round rookie from Alabama and so am I. Diggs has the tools and instincts that project him to be a future star in this league. The thing is – he’s just nowhere near that level yet. Diggs was picked on most of the day. On 11 targets he allowed 100 yards and two touchdowns. He was burned for a third TD but famously ran down the lackadaisical DK Metcalf to force a turnover. But as far as pure coverage grading – that was a terrible play for him.

Dallas Cowboys WR Corps (Grade: A): These guys proved they were the best in the NFL once again. Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, and CeeDee Lamb all looked dominant on Sunday but their grade was pushed over the top by Cedrick Wilson‘s career day. Ced put up 5 receptions for 107 yards and 2 TDs. Don’t look now but Dallas is now four-deep at WR.

Offensive coaching/play-calling (Grade: B-): This may be controversial in a loss but we saw some good things from Dallas coaches on the offensive side of the ball. First, they came out firing and passed the ball on early downs and didn’t force-feed Zeke when it was clear he was struggling. Then they adjusted their offensive line in a bold and successful shakeup that saw All Pro guard Zack Martin move to tackle. I’d give them a B+ if it wasn’t for the disastrous screen game…

The screen game (Grade: F): It doesn’t help that Seattle is one of the best teams in the NFL against the screen. They are a smart and disciplined defense who rarely bites or over pursues. They blew up two WR bubble screens and , with the help of Ezekiel Elliott‘s drops, never let the HB screen game take flight.

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Special Teams and Defensive Coaches (Grade: D): We’ll grade on a curve here given the number of injuries they’ve had to deal with, but with that said, this is a historically bad defense and that’s despite producing pressure on over 33% of their plays (just further proving pressure without coverage is pretty worthless). ST missed two extra points and fumbled a kickoff that only one play later resulted in a safety.

Other observations

Next. Do other teams still fear Zeke?. dark

When the All-22 drops we’ll be able to dive in deeper but for now these are our early grades. Any Dallas Cowboys stand out to you (good or bad)? Sound off and let us know and we’ll give them our attention in film review

  • Published on 09/28/2020 at 11:01 AM
  • Last updated at 09/28/2020 at 08:06 AM