(Nexstar) — The Dallas Cowboys played their first complete game of the season in Cincinnati on Sunday. The offense, under former Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton, had solid drives that ended in scoring opportunities.
The defense had three consecutive takeaways, and all three resulted in points for the Cowboys. It was a solid 30-7 victory for Dallas. The Cowboys were outgained, but most of Cincinnati’s damage came in garbage time. The Cowboys held the advantage in yards per play at 5.4 to 4.4.
Andy Dalton threw two touchdown passes, beating the team he led for nine seasons. While Ezekiel Elliott didn’t play at an elite level, Tony Pollard made key contributions, getting the Cowboys to four yards a carry overall.
Turnovers will change every game and this was the rare 2020 game where the Cowboys won the turnover battle. Dallas ranks 31st out of 32 teams in turnover differential this season.
The Cowboys (4-9) are still in the playoff picture, chasing the rest of the NFC East. Dallas trails Washington by two games with only three games remaining. The Cowboys are also chasing a top draft pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. The win against Cincinnati hurts their chances of a top-three pick, but they are still projected to pick between fourth and eighth.
Cowboys insider Mickey Spagnola says the team can build on the win.