For the first time all year, Washington was able to put it together on both sides of the ball. Halfway through the first, Landon Collins set the tone as he chased Andy Dalton and came up with a huge strip-sack. Jonathan Allen tackled Dalton Schultz in the end zone, resulting in a safety and a 2-0 Washington lead.
Washington’s offense immediately capitalized on the ensuing drive. Rookie running back Antonio Gibson ran it in from 12 yards out to extend Washington’s lead to 9-0. Tony Pollard set the Cowboys up nicely as he returned the ensuing kickoff 67 yards to Washington’s 39.
However, Washington’s defense held strong and forced Dallas to a three-and-out. Greg “The Leg” Zuerlein connected on a 45-yard field goal, cutting the score to 9-3.
Those three points would be the only points Washington would give up for the remainder of the game.
With about 10 minutes remaining in the second quarter, Washington took whatever fight the Cowboys had left in them and crushed it. Kyle Allen and the Washington offense took over on their own 45 after a Dallas turnover-on-downs. Two plays later, Terry McLaurin blew past Trevon Diggs, catching a 45-yard bomb from Allen, extending the lead to 15-3.
Washington continued to take advantage of Dallas’ worst-ranked defense. Allen and Gibson led Washington on a 10-play, 60-yard drive, capping it off with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Logan Thomas. Washington’s Cole Holcomb secured a 22-3 lead as he picked off Dalton in the red zone with just under a minute before half.
Halfway through the third quarter, Dallas lost their now-starting quarterback to injury. Washington’s Jon Bostic was ejected from the game after a nasty helmet-to-helmet hit on Dalton as he was in mid-slide. Third-string QB Ben DiNucci made his NFL debut and took over for the remainder of the game.
The second half served as a formality, as there were only three points scored between both teams. Dustin Hopkins added a 30-yard field goal early in the fourth and also later missed on a 44-yard attempt.
Washington did everything that I previously acknowledged they needed to do in my preview to come out with the victory. The “Ferocious Five” made life hell for the opposing signal callers, as they finished with six sacks on the day. Montez Sweat led the charge with two sacks. Holcomb had a career day as he finished with five tackles, a pass deflection, a sack, and an interception. They took advantage of the Cowboys’ ailing offensive line and feasted all game long.
On the offensive side of the ball, Scott Turner FINALLY decided to feed Gibson. I had mentioned before that the reason why Gibson hasn’t put up big yardage, is because of his lack of volume. He carried the ball a career-high 20 times, and in doing so, had a marvelous day, tallying 128 yards and a score. Allen improved upon last week, finishing with 194 yards, two scores, and no turnovers.
After their blowout victory over the Cowboys, the Washington Football Team now sits at 2-5 and is a half-game behind the 2-4-1 division-leading Philadelphia Eagles.
It’s important to note that safety Landon Collins was lost in the second quarter to a season-ending Achilles injury. Fortunately, Washington has added time to find a replacement as they head into their bye week. When they return, they will welcome another division rival to town in the New York Giants.
(Featured Image Credit: Washington Football Team)