THE COWBOYS REPORT

Enough with the prep; Cowboys ready for Giants in Week 1

Zeke Elliot. Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

The Dallas Cowboys lost their preseason finale to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers by the score of 17-15.

Ending preseason

With almost all of their starters and 2nd string players enjoying the game from the sidelines, there wasn't much of any importance going on. Both teams allowed their key players to take one final week off before the start of the regular season on Sept. 8.

Rookie Quarterback Taryn Christion from South Dakota State played the majority of the second half and led the Cowboys to their only offensive touchdown of the game late in the fourth quarter. He finished the game 11/17 for 142 yards passing with one touchdown and one interception. Christion also ran 5 times for 22 yards.

Most importantly is that the 2018 NFL leading rusher and superstar Ezekiel Elliott has finally agreed to a new deal with the Cowboys that will make him the highest paid running back ever. The 6 year $90 million contract extension comes with a $50 million guarantee. Not only are Cowboy fans rejoicing, but fantasy owners everywhere are taking a huge sigh of relief.

With the preseason in the books, Dallas looks primed for a deep playoff run this year.

3 things to watch for 

1.Running backs (Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard): It will be interesting to see what kind of shape and condition Zeke is in as he had spent his entire time away from the team in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. No. 2 RB Tony Pollard could have a bigger role to play this Sunday as Zeke tries to get into game shape.

2.Linebackers (Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith): These 2 upcoming superstars are going to have their hands full as they try to contain one of the NFL's best running backs Saquon Barkley.

3.Tight End Jason Witten: With the future Hall of Famer leaving the announcing booth and rejoining the team, there is much intrigue to see how much he can contribute to an already potent offense.

Coming Up

The Cowboys (0-0) are starting off the 2019 regular season by taking on the New York Giants (0-0) at home in AT&T Stadium on Sunday September 8th at 3:25 pm Central time. The Giants don't look to be a good team this year as they are in a rebuilding mode. They traded away their best receiver this past offseason and now are only left with one offensive weapon in Saquon Barkely. The Cowboys defense should be able to stop him and come away with an easy victory.

If you have any fantasy players, the only must start players are:

Cowboys: Ezekiel Elliott (RB), Amari Cooper (WR), Dak Prescott (QB)

Giants: Saquon Barkley (RB)

For you gamblers out there, the Cowboys are -7 and the over/under is 45. Seven points are a lot to give for any team so the only way I would play it is the number drops below seven. As for the total, I don't have a good read because I don't think New York can score much.

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Houston has lost seven of eight

Mariners ride big fifth inning to series win over Astros

Jake Odorizzi earned his second loss as an Astro Sunday. Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images.

With the losing streak behind them by taking the middle game on Saturday night, the Astros returned to T-Mobile Park on Sunday afternoon to try and make it back-to-back victories to take the series. Instead, they'd suffer their seventh loss in the last eight games.

Final Score: Mariners 7, Astros 2

Astros' Record: 7-8, fourth in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Ljay Newsome (1-0)

Losing Pitcher: Jake Odorizzi (0-2)

Odorizzi locks in through four while Houston grabs a lead

Jake Odorizzi did not start his afternoon the way he needed to in order to have a good rebound outing compared to his first start. In the 37-pitch first inning, he issued two walks and an RBI-single, putting the Mariners at a significant advantage early. Odorizzi flipped the switch, though, finding a rhythm to retire the next ten batters after that RBI-single to get through four innings with just one run allowed.

Offensively for Houston, they quickly responded to Seattle's run in the first with one of their own in the top of the second, capitalizing on some shoddy defense by Seattle to get Carlos Correa to second to set up an RBI ground-rule double by Aledmys Diaz, tying things up 1-1. It stayed that way until the top of the fifth when a leadoff walk by Chas McCormick would turn into a run after a stolen base and two sacrifice flys to give Houston a 2-1 lead.

Mariners explode for four in the fifth

The lead was short-lived, as Seattle would explode in the bottom of the fifth, getting a leadoff single and one-out walk to set up a two-RBI triple by Mitch Haniger to go ahead 3-2. That would prompt Dusty Baker out of the dugout to end Odorizzi's day and move on to Brooks Raley. Raley would not fare any better, giving up a two-run homer to Ty France to extend Seattle's new lead to 5-2. He would finish the inning, putting Odorizzi's line final: 4.1 IP, 3 H, 4 ER, 3 BB, 7 K, 89 P.

Seattle takes the series

Seattle would strike again in the bottom of the seventh against Joe Smith. After a leadoff walk, the Mariners would get back-to-back one-out RBI-doubles to extend their lead to 7-2. After Smith in the seventh, Peter Solomon would make his major-league debut in the bottom of the eighth and work around a one-out walk for a scoreless inning. Houston would then come up empty in the top of the ninth, dropping the finale and the series to Seattle.

Up Next: The Astros will travel to Denver tonight and get an off day tomorrow. Tuesday night, they'll start a quick two-game set with the Rockies at 7:40 PM Central. Houston currently has Lance McCullers Jr. (1-1, 5.27 ERA) penciled in as their starter, but with ongoing illness, he has not yet been fully confirmed. For the Rockies, Jon Gray (1-1, 2.87 ERA) is expected to start.

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