dallas cowboy

Deuce Vaughn returns in game against Lions

The Cowboys snapped their first (and only) losing streak on the year with a close, and controversial, win at home over the Lions.

 

iDL Mazi Smith

Even though Jonathan Hankins missed his third consecutive game, Mazi Smith took less snaps this week. Following two weeks in which he had been second among interior defenders, his 16 defensive snaps placed him fourth. That was in spite of the fact that Dallas had to contend with the Lions’ relatively run-heavy offense.

The decrease in workload had no positive effect on Smith’s performance either. For the majority of the evening, he was being shoved around and was unable to record a tackle. Smith had been doing admirably for the majority of the season, but his poor performance last week resulted in a reduced role and more difficulties this week. Towards the end of the regular season, you don’t want to see a rookie following that tendency.

TE Luke Schoonmaker

As the backup tight end in this offense, Luke Schoonmaker continued to split time with Peyton Hendershot, playing 17 offensive snaps to Hendershot’s 18 reps. Schoonmaker performed admirably as a run blocker despite just running two routes without hitting a single target for the day. However, it appears that Hendershot has taken up the few targets Schoonmaker was observing while he was away.

LB DeMarvion Overshown

DeMarvion Overshown tore his ACL in the preseason and is on the injured reserve for the year.

EDGE Viliami Fehoko

Viliami Fehoko is on the injured reserve.

OL Asim Richards

Asim Richards was inactive for this game.

CB Eric Scott Jr.

Eric Scott Jr. was inactive for this game.

RB Deuce Vaughn

For the first time since Week 10, Deuce Vaughn was added to the active roster on game day. During that time, he mostly served as KaVontae Turpin’s punt returner substitute. Additionally, this was the first time Vaughn had gotten multiple carries since the 49ers defeat in Week 5.

Still, it wasn’t really noteworthy. In addition to his two yards of carrying, Vaughn also caught his lone reception for 10 yards on a screen pass that gained him 14 yards after the catch. But after Rico Dowdle heals from his injury, Vaughn will probably return to being an inactive player.

WR Jalen Brooks

Jalen Brooks was active in this game for the first time since Week 12, and he mostly played on special teams. Brooks did see two offensive snaps, though both came on running plays where Brooks was asked to block.

G T.J. Bass

Once again, T.J. Bass was asked to step in for an injured player; this time, it was at left guard following Tyler Smith’s injury. As one of three lineman to allow no pressures throughout the game, Bass, who hadn’t played left guard since Week 2, completed the contest in Smith’s stead.

The Cowboys have overlooked Bass’s steady development during his rookie campaign as he has established himself as a dependable depth player in the trenches. Chuma Edoga had been the starting left guard backup earlier in the season, but Bass seems to have replaced him in that position as well.

FB Hunter Luepke

Hunter Luepke didn’t have a chance to redeem himself from his costly fumble a week ago, but he remained a part of this offense. Luepke saw eight offensive snaps, just as many as Vaughn, with all but one of them coming as a traditional lead blocker.

K Brandon Aubrey

In this one, Brandon Aubrey converted two field goals and two extra points on all four kicks. His flawless season record on field goals was continued with the field goals, which came from 51 and 43 yards.

Aubrey needs one more game to complete the season with a perfect record of field goals made. With at least 22 attempts in a season, that would make him just the 10th kicker in NFL history to pull off the accomplishment.

LB Tyrus Wheat

Tyrus Wheat played on 14 special teams snaps throughout the game, carrying out his normal role.

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