The Dallas Cowboys versus Minnesota Vikings looked like the game of the day for CBS. It certainly should have been, but as it turned out, what a waste of football.
How bad was it? Well, CBS flipped off the cameras in Minnesota and switched to the Pittsburgh Steelers-Cincinnati Bengals game. Networks do this from time to time, knowing that everyday NFL fans will lose interest in a lopsided affair. So they’ll leave one game late to catch the final few moments of a different contest.
But this Cowboys-Vikings contest was the premiere game on the network. It’s why top broadcasting team Jim Nantz and Tony Romo were up in the announcers’ booth. And here’s the final rub for the Cowboys-Vikings. The network ditched the game with five minutes to go — in the third quarter. By this time, the Cowboys had built a 37-3 lead. Kirk Cousins, who’d been sacked a career-high seven times, and his Vikings couldn’t come back from this sort of disadvantage.
“This league has a way of humbling any football team at any point in time if you don’t play good football,” Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell said.
Seriously, what in the name of Roger Staubach and Fran Tarkington was this about? After all, this rivalry gave the NFL the Hail Mary.
Cowboys Beat Vikings 40-3 for Its Biggest Road Win in Team History
The Cowboys eventually won, 40-3. And here’s what the cameras missed. The game evolved into Dallas’ most complete road victory in team history. And they did all this dominating against a team riding a seven-game winning streak. Plus, Cousins had become a viral star for his post-game, shirtless celebrations. Yet it all ended Sunday at U.S. Bank Stadium in downtown Minneapolis. We’re quite sure Cousins didn’t loop some gold chunky chains around his neck nor dance around shirtless.
Dallas was so dominant that the offense scored points on its first eight drives. And team owner Jerry Jones was so impressed with the dominance that he started to think ahead. Sure, he probably wasn’t pleased that CBS refused to show the rest of the game. But Jones immediately made a proclamation about the results.
“I sure do think what I see out here right now is the team like you could go get a Super Bowl with,” Jones said.
Too bad the rest of the country didn’t get a full chance to see this November Super Bowl contender. But the Cowboys did truly play well.
Dallas was motivated by its previous game, when the Cowboys squandered a 14-point, fourth-quarter lead in a road loss against the Green Bay Packers. It was the first time the Cowboys had blown such a late lead. Conversely, Sunday’s game proved to be Dallas’ biggest road win in team history.
Both teams quickly return to action. The Cowboys host the New York Giants on Thanksgiving afternoon. It’s an annual holiday tradition for the team, although Dallas has dropped three straight Turkey Day games. Meanwhile, the Vikings take on New England Thursday night. It’ll be the first time the Vikings have played on Thanksgiving. But we do know this, the networks don’t have the luxury of baling out of a bad game for a good one.