Dallas Cowboys: Pros and Cons of a Ball Control Offense [an analysis]

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports /

The Dallas Cowboys are wearing out their opponents as well

Something we also need to keep in mind is the way the Dallas Cowboys offense is operating and the effects it’s been having on the opposition. The Dallas Cowboys aren’t just a pass-heavy quick-strike attack, but they’re often a hurry-up attack that forgoes the huddle in order to keep the opposing defense on the field.

Defenses rely on heavy rotations up front. By not letting opponents sub out players, Dallas is making the opposing defense more tired than even their own overworked defense. While the Cowboys defense is on the field for a long period of time, they have the option of subbing in and out. Teams that play against the Cowboys offense aren’t always so lucky.

An argument can be made Dallas should actually speed up more rather than slow things down. By executing more drives out of the no-huddle, Dallas can effectively cancel out their TOP problem by greatly reducing the opposing defense’s ability to substitute.

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We’ve seen the effects of this the last three weeks. Atlanta, Seattle, and Cleveland all had physically “gassed” defenses late in the game when Dallas increased their no-huddle use. In fact, they often looked worse than Dallas’ pathetic defense.


By now it should be pretty clear there’s no reason for the Dallas Cowboys to break from what they do best, all so they can slow things down and control the ball. There’s no inherent advantage to winning time of possession or limiting overall possessions for the Cowboys, and doing so would hurt the team considerably more than help them.

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A ball control offense will not help this defense. Playing with a lead will help the defense and doing that requires staying positive in the early turnover differential and scoring as much points each drive as humanly possible. We all want solutions for this losing Dallas team but a ball control offense ain’t the way to do it.