The Dallas Cowboys had a near-perfect offensive game versus the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday night.
They marched up and down the field with ease for most of the game, with Dak Prescott hitting his receivers in stride, extending drives, and getting those yards whenever the Bucs defense threatened to get a stop.
The Cowboys were aggressive during the first 30 minutes of the game, mostly dominating through the air despite often using a run-heavy approach this season.
That’s why former tight end-turned analyst Greg Olsen made the most of the chance to dismiss one of the most common narratives among football fans and pundits: You don’t always need to establish the run to win.
For the “establish the run” crowd
Dallas passing game gets the lead. NOW the run game in the second half must close it out!#passtoscoreruntofinish
— Greg Olsen (@gregolsen88) January 17, 2023
Olsen explained how, instead, teams should use the passing attack to put up points on the scoreboard and then lean on the run to close it out and keep that clock ticking and the rival offense off the field.
That was exactly what the Cowboys did against Todd Bowles‘ team.
They used the second half to wear their defense out with long running drives featuring both Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard, with all those lanes opening up mostly thanks to how successful they were at throwing the football during the game’s first two quarters.
Once again, football is a game of adjustments, tactics, and strategy, and good coaching could take you a very long way.
But there’s not just one formula or way to getting things done in this dynamic league, and the Cowboys were living proof of that on Monday night.