Cowboys 31, Miami 6: And Sorry, But Yes, 'The Dolphins Do Suck'

Mike Fisher
September 23, 2019 - 6:53 am
Miami Dolphins at Dallas Cowboys

USA TODAY Sports

ARLINGTON (105.3 THE FAN)  - We left it to wisdom-whispering receiver Amari Cooper to best create a mantra that would guard his undefeated Dallas Cowboys against napping through Week 3 and Sunday’s visit from the hapless Miami Dolphins.

“I know when I was on a team (that) got beat like that, I didn’t feel that we sucked,” Cooper said a few days ago. “I just felt like we had a bad game. That’s how I feel about the Dolphins. I don’t feel that they suck.”

Amari Cooper is a smart dude with a gigantic football IQ. If his words were a motivational technique? It probably helped. If they were a sincere evaluation of what might've happened here at AT&T Stadium?

Dallas 31, Miami 6. The Dolphins really do suck.

"We have to keep the bar high,'' DeMarcus Lawrence told me after a blowout that some think should've been more of a blowout. "We know (realistically) we ain't gonna reach (weekly shutouts). But we're gonna keep diggin' 'til we get close to it.'

The Cowboys entered as 21-point favorites but took a little time bolstering the oddsmakers' egos. Dallas led just 10-6 at the half before strutting to 21 unanswered points in the second half and in total, two TD catches by Amari Cooper, dual 100-yard rushers in Ezekiel Elliott and caddie Tony Pollard, and yet another best-in-the-NFL stat day from QB Dak Prescott.

"Credit to this team,'' said Dak when asked about the mistakes he made that were overcome. "That was water down a duck's back. Just wipe it off and keep going."

If Cowboys Nation wanted to use intermission as a time to buzz about which key starters might get to sit out, to join a handful of already-resting guys who maybe, just maybe, would've played here had the stakes been higher and the threat been more legit ... no that didn't happen. But owner Jerry Jones insisted he wouldn't have it any other way.

"All in all, I wouldn't trade what a game like this can do for us,'' Jones said. "Coaches and players say, 'I've got more to give.' But I wouldn't ask for anything more (that effort being given to 3-0.)'

Dallas eventually found itself pushing its way to that lofty 3-0 mark (coach Jason Garrett's first such start) against a winless Miami team that does oh-so-much wrong. The Cowboys are ascending, no doubt, with a roster so young and deep that, for instance, they can afford to cut former first-round pick Taco Charlton.

The 0-3 Dolphins? They are so the bizarro-world reverse image of the Cowboys that they immediately snatched up off waivers Taco and put him in uniform here -- and as one Miami staffer suggested before the game, maybe just added their best pass-rusher. Indeed, Taco actually recorded a sack on Dak.

But Dallas countered with three sacks of its own, one of them by Lawrence (who told me he used his "Boobie Miles Spin,'' a "Friday Night Lights'' reference that went along wth his letter jacket) and one of them by newcomer Robert Quinn, the former Dolphins headliner.

And when a team scores around 30 every week as Dallas does ... and when it allows but two scores ... yes, "ascending'' remains the right word.

Miami is plummeting toward tank mode, having now been outscored 133-16 by its opponents over the first three of weeks of the 2019 campaign.

Last week, Miami was the victim of an embarrassing 43-0 loss at the hands of the New England Patriots. That was the best team in the AFC having its way with the drowning Fish. 

This week?

Maybe it's the best team in the NFC that asserted itself similarly.

Said Garrett before the game: “We've never talked about (point-spread) lines, good, bad or indifferent ... The biggest thing we talk about is us and what we need to do.''

Corny? OK, but it's the same sort of message Amari tried to spread. And, all together, it worked.

 "The Dolphins Don't Suck'' was a weird way to give a compliment. But it was the best the Cowboys could do ... before they spend Sunday afternoon taking just a little extra time in proving their own mantra wrong.