What’s the Deal with Dak?

Dak After Loss

Dak Prescott after the 26-15 loss to Buffalo on Thanksgiving Day

If there was ever a team destined for drama, it is the Dallas Cowboys.  They have a prima donna owner, a puppet of a coach, and players like Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliot that just keep the story line going. And they play in the world’s most bodacious stadium.

And that’s how some people are; full of hype but no hope, full of fluff but no real stuff. They’re just good on paper. And right now, the Dallas Cowboys (and my Eagles too!) are just good on paper.

According to NFL custom, yesterday the Cowboys played their annual Thanksgiving Day game.  The fans in the Jerry Dome (a.k.a. AT&T Stadium) were joined by a national television audience that watched in horror as the ‘Boys proceeded to lose to the Buffalo Bills, 26 -15, and it wasn’t that close. The Buffalo Bills entered their Thanksgiving Day matchup with an impressive 8-3 record, but most analysts didn’t give Buffalo much of a chance to contend in the playoffs, and they were 6.5-point underdogs in Dallas on Thursday. But after an impressive, opening first quarter drive that made the ‘Boys look invincible, they managed to literally fumble and bumble the game away.

Now let’s provide a little context. This was the game after the game that they lost to the World champion New England Patriots. After the loss to the Pats, their prima donna owner ripped Head Coach Jason Garrett and the coaching staff a new one. Jerry all but threatened to fire the entire coaching staff for the poor performance on the field.

But were taking about Dak here. Coaches can’t control performance and execution, and Dak hasn’t being playing well of late.  You would think that Dak would come out and play lights out like Lamar Jackson, especially AT HOME on Thanksgiving. Nope. Didn’t happen, at least not for the last 50 minutes of the game. You would think that Dak would dance his way back into the favor of Cowboy Nation and put some distance between them and Philly; strike two. And you would think that the entire Cowboys team would show up and show out if they wanted to save their coach.  Clang. That one bounced off the back of the rim. Game, set match, Buffalo Bills. 

Maybe Dak needs to do his pregame dance a little more? (Or is a little less?) Oh well. It all may come down to a Eagles/Dallas showdown in Philly in a few weeks.

Go Birds! 


Note to Eagles Fans: “There’s Always Last Year”

Carson Wentz-philadelphia-eagles-loss to-dallas-cowboys
Carson Wentz dejected after loss to Dallas at home drops Eagles to 4-5


The phrase is actually meant to read like this: “there’s always NEXT year.”  That’s what sports fans say when their team is lousy and lazy and dismal and dreadful. When the season is lost, the hope is that the team will be better and the future brighter next year. And so we say “there’s always next year.” And for the Philadelphia Eagles, technically, that’s still true.

But we’re still in THIS year. And after taking a good hard look at this year, it’s hard not to be tempted to look at last year. This year, the most recent Sunday Night loss to Dallas at home, leaving the Birds with a record of 4-5, leaves every Eagle fan in a lurch. In our heart of hearts, we still have and hold onto last year’s Super Bowl victory. Someway, somehow that colossal win was supposed to convert into a repeat Super Bowl victory this year. But not so. 

LAST year, the Eagles had a great team. In fact, we weren’t just great, we were awesome.  Last year, the Eagles had great chemistry. The coaching staff, the offensive line, the running backs, and the defensive line, all were top notch.  Not so much this year. The Eagles lost their Offensive Coordinator and their Quarterbacks Coaches to other teams.  The running backs we had for all or most of last year are mostly gone: LeGarrette Blount was allowed to walk in free agency, and Jay Ajayi and Darren Sproules are injured. Corey Clement has not panned out like everyone hoped he would, and so that leaves the team with Wendell Smallwood and Josh Adams.  Needless to say, the chemistry we have this year is not the  same as last year.

And so the bottom line is this: they call it the Super Bowl Slump.  Teams that win the Super Bowl hardly repeat as champions and win another the next year (it hasn’t happened since the Patriots did it in 2005), and a good number of Super Bowl Champions don’t even MAKE IT to the playoffs after the big win.

Generraly speakintg, we’re not supposed to look backwards; we’re supposed to look forward.  God put two eyes in the front of our heads for a reason.  Biblically speaking, the only time we are encouraged to look back is to be grateful for yesterday’s victory’s and yesteryear’s triumphs.  

And at this point in this season, that’s pretty much all we’ve got.

“The Eagles’ Super Bowl championship was viewed as the greatest moment in Philadelphia sports history. That team will be beloved forever, and the players and coaches spent all offseason hearing how they fulfilled every Philly fan’s lifelong dream.”


Don’t Be A Turkey

Chalie Brown & Lucy

Charlie Brown was a turkey. He fell for Lucy’s ploy time and again.   Charlie Brown, truth be told, was the “Thanksgiving Turkey.”  Yes he tried, but what he needed to do was to deal with his inner inhibitions and to tell Lucy he was tired of playing her dumb game and playing by her stupid rules.  Sometimes you have to CHANGE the rules. So stop playing by the world’s standards. Stop letting those that don’t mean you well dictate the circumstances. Change the rules. Make them work in your favor. 

Turkey is sort of an outdated slang term for coward. Now it means chump, sap or sucker. In this case it’s sort of a pun: turkey refers to Thanksgiving as well.  Charlie Brown was a coward because he was afraid to change.  He was afraid to confront. He was afraid to contend.  He didn’t change.  So don’t be a turkey.  Change the rules.  Change the meaning of the word.

In bowling turkey doesn’t mean coward.  It means just the opposite. It is a sign of sustained victory.  All bowlers know that a “turkey” is three consecutive strikes thrown by a bowler playing ten-pin bowling. There is no recorded derivation of this term but Chuck Pezzana, the historian of the Professional Bowlers Association offers a likely origin. During the Great Depression of the 1930s many bowling alleys began to hold sweepstakes events during the holiday seasons of Thanksgiving and Christmas offering food as gifts to the winners. The common award for bowling three strikes in a row was a live turkey. If a person accomplished this feat his or her teammates would all shout, “turkey!” letting the proprietor know that the prize had been won.

So don’t be a turkey.  Be bold enough to dare to change the rules. John the Baptist changed the rules. When he was born, the family wanted to call him Zechariah Jr., after his father.  But Elisabeth said no, and she looked to her husband, Zechariah, for support and confirmation. Zechariah, a mute at the time because of his unbelief, when asked what the child’s name should be, wrote on a tablet “He shall be called John.” As soon as he wrote the prophetic name of this, his son of promise, “his tongue was loosed, and he spoke, blessing God” (Luke 1:64). 

Courage comes when you believe God when others don’t and won’t.  You don’t get courage to believe, you get courage when you believe.  Don’t be a turkey.  Don’t be afraid to stand firmly for your faith. Be confident in your theology; be competent in philosophy; and don’t be arrogant in your spirituality. We know that our God is the only wise God, but we don’t have to put others down when the goal is to build them up. So change the rules. Seek ways to share your faith without denigrating or disparaging others.  

Don’t play by Lucy’s rules.  Don’t be a turkey.