The Cowboys saved their skin by completing an epic comeback against the Falcons, who fell miserably. This is the kind of game that is likely to define the season for both teams.
By winning 40-39 on a 46-yard field goal by Greg Zuerlein, the Cowboys avoided opening the campaign with two losses, which would have put them under unbearable pressure in Dallas. Here they are rather in full ecstasy after a victory which will almost make forget their glaring deficiencies in defense.
Conversely, the Falcons will hardly forget this setback, they who held advances of 20-0 in the first quarter, 29-10 at the half and 39-24 in the fourth quarter.
It's the kind of defeat that plays in the heads of the players, which undermines confidence and which makes several players point the finger at each other.
Those same Falcons had escaped the Super Bowl to the Patriots in 2016 even though they were holding them in the cables with a 28-3 lead in the third quarter. Since that shot, they still look like a team collectively suffering the effects of a mega concussion.
The Falcons have had several opportunities to take down the Cowboys for good, but definitely lack the killer instinct.
Julio Jones dropped a bomb in the end zone on a rigged play. In the fourth quarter, they regained the ball after the Cowboys fell short of exhausting their four tries, but were content with a field goal. The defense gave up 367 yards and four touchdowns in the second half.
It was one of the most laughable executions in history, however, that sank them for good, on the Cowboys' desperate short kick with 1:49 to go. Three Falcons players watched the ball roll slowly towards them, without catching it, as if waiting for it to cross the regulation distance of at least 10 yards.
But the team that receives the ball absolutely has the right to grab it before the 10 yards in question. This is a monumental blunder of misguided players.
It would be amazing for head coach Dan Quinn to pay for this offense, but his team gives the impression that they are disorganized. After two consecutive seasons of seven wins and nine losses, his job security was already not extraordinary.
If a few more setbacks are added in the coming weeks, we can say that this match was the beginning of the end for Quinn.
A rare feat
The Cowboys can gloat over the end result, but no one in this locker room can hide their faces and pretend the team is playing well. Yes, the comeback is spectacular and the resilience of Dak Prescott and his gang deserves to be saluted.
The fact remains that the three escaped early in the game should have killed them. A fake clearance failed and the defense conceded runs on six consecutive Falcons possessions. The attack is going well, but there is cause for concern about the other phases of the game.
It's the victory that matters in the end and it could revive the Cowboys for good, but such an unlikely ending doesn't come every Sunday.
According to ESPN Stats & Info, the record for teams who held a lead of at least 15 points in the last five minutes of a game over the past 20 years was 1,875 wins and six losses, before the Falcons set off. .
The Cowboys won't be able to plead with the Miracles Department every week to save face.
The Bills quarterback is enjoying the best moments of his young career at the start of the season. After his first 300-yard passing game last week, he came back with 417 yards and four touchdowns. A captivating player to watch!
Prescott became the first quarterback to accumulate over 400 yards on the air, with three rushing touchdowns in a single game. He is shopping around for a solid contract.
The Packers runner shone with 168 rushing yards and two touchdowns, in addition to four receptions for 68 yards and one touchdown. The Packers attack got off to a flying start.
The Steelers linebacker tormented the Broncos with 2.5 sacks. The defense had a total of seven sacks. Opposing quarterbacks will have nightmares all year round.
He knew at the last moment he would be starting his first game of his career, but Chargers rookie quarterback Justin Herbert wasn't under the pressure with a commendable performance (311 yards, one touchdown pass and one touchdown to the ground). He must stay on the ground.
A host of big names have fallen in battle. Saquon Barkley's season is already over. It also seems the case for Nick Bosa. Several others were also injured, including Christian McCaffrey, Jimmy Garoppolo, Drew Lock and Davante Adams. A sad day!
Two other interceptions for the quarterback of the Eagles, who was however better protected this week. He's already got four this season and he's killing the few moments of momentum for the Eagles.
Kirk Cousins didn't see the pressure coming and only completed 11 of his 26 passes. The Mauves only had the ball for 21:35 and play uninspired football. The season could be long …
History repeats itself, the Lions continue to be the Lions. They now have the illustrious distinction of being the first team in history to escape a lead of at least 10 points in four straight games.
The Chargers head coach erred in overtime by opting for a clearance on a fourth down situation and a yard to go. Against another team, maybe. But giving the ball back to Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs is suicide.
5 games of the week
1. THE CANADIAN BOMB
A Canadian receiver is making a name for himself in the NFL. British Columbia rookie Chase Claypool made the difference in the Steelers' victory with a touchdown on an 84-yard long play. The large format receiver showed all his speed on the game by catching the bomb from Ben Roethlisberger at halfway to then sow his roofer Michael Ojemudia. Not bad for the one nicknamed “Mapletron”.
2. FATAL INTERCEPTION
The Jaguars and the Titans fought a superb battle until the last moments of the game. The Jaguars trailed 14 points twice in the game, but never gave up. At the very end of the game, behind by three points with the ball in their possession, they saw their valiant effort come to an end when a pass from Gardner Minshew was blocked at the line of scrimmage. Linebacker Harold Landry grabbed the ball on the bound for the interception that saved the Titans.
3.33 AND 31
One game particularly demonstrated the ineptitude of the Jets, against the 49ers. Cornered in their zone, grappling with an impossible third down situation and 31 yards to go, the Niners opted for the conservative approach by handing the ball to their carrier Jerick McKinnon. This one galloped for 55 yards! The Jets are currently fulfilling their role as the worst team on the tour. And it's not even close!
4. A WHOLE DIVING!
The Ravens tormented the Texans and the defense had their say with two turnovers. One of them was signed by cornerback Marcus Peters, who managed a sublime interception by diving down to prevent Brandin Cooks from catching Deshaun Watson's pass. Peters is a subscriber to these spectacular games.
5. VICTORY, CHIEFS!
The Chargers' defense gave the Chiefs a hard time, but the Chiefs ultimately won in overtime on a long 58-yard field goal from Harrison Butker. The kicker also scored two 58 yards in this duel. The Chiefs pulled off the winning field goal after converting a fourth down and a yardage earlier in their offensive streak.