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Steelers-Cowboys: What A Weird NFL Game

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The Pittsburgh Steelers moved to 8-0 on Sunday. Considering they played the now 2-7 Dallas Cowboys, that might not come as a shock. But it should. This game did not play out as expected.

The Steelers, the only remaining undefeated team left in the NFL, were a 14-point favorite. They are also the favorite to win the AFC, even over the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.

Dallas, on the other hand, is down to its fourth-string quarterback. The season-ending injury to Dak Prescott has been well documented. So have the struggles from backups Andy Dalton (concussion) and Ben DiNucci.

That left 29-year-old journeyman Garrett Gilbert, who hasn’t even been on the roster for a month.

The former Texas/SMU quarterback was drafted in the sixth-round back in 2014. He spent part of the 2019 season in the AAF with the Orlando Apollos. He was 2-of-6 for 40 yards in his NFL career coming into Sunday.

That is the guy Pittsburgh had to prep for this weekend. It is no wonder the Cowboys were two-touchdown dogs, right? Well, Dallas led for most of the game.

It wasn’t until a late fourth-quarter touchdown that the Steelers took a 24-19 lead, which ended up being the final score. And Gilbert still almost led the Cowboys to a final drive that finished with a game-winning touchdown.

It was a serviceable performance, even with other key Dallas players on the offensive line and on defense sidelined by injuries.

So, how does that happen? How does a team depleted with injuries and on its fourth starting quarterback go toe-to-toe with the top team in the AFC? How does this game end up being so close, especially since the Steelers did not commit any turnovers?

Honestly, it is hard to answer these questions. All we can say is that it is the NFL, and it is 2020. Weird things happen sometimes. Games like the one we witnessed between Dallas and Pittsburgh prove that any team can win on any given Sunday.

Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.

Written by Clint Lamb

Clint Lamb is a College Football Writer for OutKick. Managing Editor for Roll Tide Wire. Sports radio host for The Bullpen on 730/103.9 The UMP. Co-host for The 'Bama Beat podcast through The Tuscaloosa News and TideSports.com.

4 Comments

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  1. Good on the NFL for getting their “Steelers are 8-0 for the first time ever!” storyline, but every Cowboys fan in the world knew that the refs were going to throw a beneficial flag on that last Steelers scoring drive if it was necessary, and they did.

    “Roughing the passer” on 3rd and 10 when the pocket is collapsing around the QB and the QB’s helmet gets grazed by someone’s forearm and the ball flutters incomplete.

    But then when the Cowboys get it back, Gilbert gets mauled on every play and receivers are grabbed all over the field and nary a peep from the referee.

    It was as predictable as the day is long.

    • We are all used to getting hosed by the officials, but the last 10 minutes of that game was unbelievable. Even for the lousy officiating we have come to expect week in and week out, this game was truly notable.

      The missed defensive holding call on Pittsburgh on the interception in the endzone was typical and probably decided the game. The unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on LVE for an open hand push to separate himself from the Pittsburgh player who had hold of his face mask was salt in the wound after the bogus roughing the passer call. Then to ensure a Pittsburgh victory we had the missed illegal hands to the face penalty on Pittsburgh during the Cowboys last drive where Connor Williams got bowled over, and on the last play of the game, Pittsburgh was lined up in the neutral zone!

      Even for crappy NFL officiating, this one was truly special.

  2. A couple of reasons for the weird result-
    -Third straight road game for Pittsburgh (teams usually only win 33% time)
    -The week following the Pittsburgh vs Baltimore game, both teams are are usually sluggish and have records just over .500…

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