Much of the talk about the Dallas Cowboys through the first four weeks of the 2021 regular season has been about the team’s offense. With Dak Prescott back at quarterback, a two-headed monster at running back and a deep group of pass-catchers, Kellen Moore’s offense seems to be able to score at will.
However, the Cowboys defense has been nothing to scoff about either.
Dallas currently ranks in the top half of teams in points allowed per game (22.5) and has done a remarkable job holding down some of the best offenses in the NFL. Star cornerback Trevon Diggs currently leads the league with five interceptions and the Cowboys pass-rush has outperformed expectations to help the NFC East club race out to a 3-1 record.
The Cowboys performance on defense has been so impressive that ESPN analyst Mina Kimes apologized Monday for her preseason prediction that the unit would struggle this season.
“I was watching the defense and every time a [Cowboys] defensive player did something good, I was like ‘Okay, I gotta apologize to him.’ So first, I should start with Dan Quinn because coming into this season, you know I wasn’t critical of Dan Quinn, but I said this is going to be a vanilla defense, cover-3, not gonna blitz. Yeah, I was wrong,” Kimes said on NFL Live Monday. “The pass-rush, when DeMarcus Lawrence went down, I said, they’re screwed… Randy Gregory showed up yesterday. The interior defensive line, I said [it was] one of the weakest in the NFL… Osa Odighizuwa, I mean he looks like a first-rounder. And finally, we’ve talked about how awesome Trevon Diggs is, and we knew that he was good coming into this season, but I said the rest of this secondary sucks. I was wrong, they’re playing really well… The whole defense is playing so well.”
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) October 4, 2021
The strength of the Cowboys remains their offense, but if Dallas’s defense can remain solid throughout the rest of the regular season, the team should be able to get into the playoffs comfortably.
From there, head coach Mike McCarthy will need to do his best to lead the club through a competitive NFC.