The Cowboys Report

Proficient Prescott looks to be in midseason form for Cowboys

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The Dallas Cowboys got their first win of the preseason Saturday night when they beat the Los Angeles Rams 14-10.

For the second week in a row Quarterback Dak Prescott has led the Cowboys to a score in their opening possession. Just like last week, he was perfect on all his throws (5-5) for 64 yards, which helped add to the 12 play, 97 yard touchdown drive.H e seems to be in mid-season form already as he connected with five different players on each of his throws. Once again he hooked up with second year receiver Michael Gallup, this time for a 31 yard pass down the right sideline for the longest play of the game.cHe looks like he is ready for the regular season to begin and perhaps deserving of a new "Starting Quarterback" contract.

Speaking of new contracts, last year's NFL leading rusher Ezekiel Elliott is still hasn't reported to the team as he is waiting for a new one of his own. With him out, rookie running back Tony Pollard looked great as he played with the starters on that opening drive. He carried the ball five times for 42 yards and caught one pass for nine yards. Most importantly, Pollard ended the drive with an inside handoff that he took for a 14 yard touchdown. After seeing that, the Cowboys have something more than just the win to be excited about.

The Dallas defense looked solid again. They made the Rams punt on their first two possessions but did allow a touchdown on their third one which was set up by a fumbled punt return on the Cowboys 37 yard line.


3 things to watch for

1.Running backs (T. Pollard or A. Morris): Rookie Tony Pollard (2019 fourth round pick) looked impressive. He ran with a good mix of both power and speed. Veteran Alfred Morris saw his first preseason action. He didn't do much with his three carries for six yards. Pollard looks to be the clear cut #1 RB for now.

2.Return of Jason Witten: After coming back from a year of retirement, the 11 time Pro Bowl Tight End caught his only target that turned out to be a clutch third down catch that gave the Cowboys a first down to keep their scoring drive alive. He could be an important factor that helps cure their red zone woes.

3.Kicker Brett Maher: Missed his only field goal attempt of the game (52 yards) but made his two extra point attempts. The Cowboys don't seem to have much confidence in him and might start looking to bring in someone else to kick for them.

Coming up

Saturday Aug. 24 the Dallas Cowboys (1-1) will be taking on their in-state rival Houston Texans (1-1) at home in AT&T stadium.This matchup should be compelling as it's the third preseason game and it is the one that most resembles a regular season contest. Almost all starters should play a good amount of time.

Currently, the line on this game is a pickem with the over/under at 40.5. Again, this is preseason and I will be staying away. If you absolutely have to play something, I would look to the over. The Texans are averaging 26 points this preseason while the Cowboys are averaging 11.5. If that stays true, score will be around 37.5. With all starters playing a little more than they have been, I would, think that one or maybe both teams might score a little more than their average. If you played last week, it was an easy under of 43.5.


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Boston's two grand slams in the first two innings were too much for Houston to overcome in ALCS Game 2. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

After a win in ALCS Game 1 that had the prototypical fingerprints of this Astros team all over it, Houston returned to Minute Maid Park on Saturday, hoping to take a dominant 2-0 series lead if they could grab another victory. The Red Sox dashed those hopes very early, though, scoring eight runs across the first two innings to build the lead they would hold on to even the series.

Final Score: Boston 9, Astros 5

ALCS Series (Best of Seven): tied 1-1

Winning Pitcher: Nathan Eovaldi

Losing Pitcher: Luis Garcia

Houston met with disaster to start Game 2

You couldn't have drawn up a much better start for the Red Sox or a worse one for the Astros in Saturday's ALCS Game 2. Luis Garcia met early disaster in the top of the first inning, allowing a leadoff double, then got two outs while issuing two walks to load the bases. That brought up Boston's designated hitter, J.D. Martinez, to the plate, and he delivered a crushing blow to Houston, launching a grand slam to put the Red Sox up 4-0 before Houston could even get to the plate.

After a scoreless bottom of the inning by his offense, things got worse for Garcia in the top of the second, as after issuing a four-pitch walk to start the frame, he would become the center of a meeting at the mound with trainers, ultimately leaving the game with an injury. Houston opted to bring in Jake Odorizzi for the emergency call to the bullpen, but things did not start well for him either. He would put two of his own batters on base with two singles, then gave up the second grand slam in as many innings, this one to Rafael Devers to double Boston's lead to 8-0, doubling down on Houston's disastrous start to the game.

Odorizzi rebounded with a 1-2-3 third, but with one out in the top of the fourth allowed a solo homer to Kiké Hernández, his third homer of the series so far. He would still get the job done of eating up a few innings, finishing the fourth, and retiring Boston in order in the fifth, giving Houston just four more innings to cover with the rest of their relievers.

Astros get a few runs back

Over that span, Houston did trim the lead by three runs, getting an RBI double by Kyle Tucker and a two-RBI single by Yuli Gurriel in the bottom of the fourth, making it a six-run game at 9-3. Their next reliever was Blake Taylor in the top of the sixth, and he would keep the score where it stood by sitting down the three batters he faced that frame.

The Astros threatened again in the bottom of the sixth, getting two singles to put two aboard, but would come out empty, sending the game on to the seventh, where Taylor would remain on the mound. He faced three more batters, getting two out while allowing a single before Yimi Garcia would come in to get the third out.

Red Sox even the series as it shifts to Boston

Garcia returned in the top of the eighth, getting through that inning despite a walk and hit by pitch, stranding both runners. Boston's bullpen kept Houston from getting any closer in the bottom of the eighth, then Ryne Stanek came in for the Astros in the top of the ninth. Stanek allowed a leadoff double, but with a groundout and double play, held the score at 9-3. Yuli Gurriel and Jason Castro did their part to keep the Astros alive in the bottom of the ninth, each hitting solo homers to make it 9-5, but that's as close as they'd come, dropping Game 2 to tie the series at one game apiece.

Up Next: The ALCS now moves to Boston for the next three games after a day off on Sunday, with Game 3 on Monday at 7:08 PM Central. While the Astros have named Jose Urquidy as their starter, the Red Sox have not yet determined theirs.

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