Jimmy Johnson led the Dallas Cowboys to two Super Bowl championships in the early 1990s and coached a team that included legends Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith, Michael Irvin and Charles Haley.
But today’s Cowboys are a far cry from their dynastic teams of the era and Johnson was among those stunned by the final play of their 19-12 loss to the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.
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Johnson summed up the piece in a one-word tweet.
“Stupid,” he wrote.
Dak Prescott and the Cowboys needed a miracle from their own 24-yard line to even have a shot at a tie. Running back Ezekiel Elliott was the center for Dallas, with no other offensive linemen surrounding him. Instead, the linemen were wide on the left and right sides of the line of scrimmage and it was clear the Cowboys would try something crazy in their last ditch effort.
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As Elliott broke the ball—he was quickly run over by a 49ers pass rusher—Prescott quickly dropped before throwing to rookie KaVontae Turpin, who was immediately hit to end the game. Turpin’s lineman couldn’t get to Jimmie Ward fast enough for the block, and it was easy for the veteran cornerback to seal the deal.
The piece was widely criticized online. McCarthy explained that the result was not what they had in mind.
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“Yeah, it didn’t take off,” McCarthy said via NBC Sports Bay Area. “I really don’t want to go into detail about it, but that obviously wasn’t the plan. It’s obviously a gadget game or whatever. It’s a call for the last play situation we’re practicing.”