Well, Madden 17 is now 2-1 in simulations. Last week, the once-a-season magic came true where it was actually quite accurate. I don’t really see a reason to relive that ridiculousness. All I can say is thanks for nothing, Madden. Thanks for gloating in the rare instances you’re correct.
This week, we have the Cowboys. Let’s see how this one turns out.
Quarter Length: 6 minutes
Inactives: Jimmie Ward (49ers), La’el Collins (Cowboys)
Note: I left Dez Bryant in here. I personally feel he’ll be a decoy and used very little in the actual game. I was torn on to remove him from the game, but ultimately decided to leave him in.
The 49ers received and brought it out to the...30 yard line? That’s promising. What wasn’t promising by an opening drive of only run plays. 7 plays later and Pinion began his weekly leg workouts, with a nice punt to the 5 yard line.
The Cowboys had little trouble running the ball the few times Ezekiel Elliot had it. Dak Prescott had plenty of time in the pocket for some nice throws and within 3 minutes the Cowboys had a Dez Bryant touchdown to open things up.
Score: 7-0, Cowboys
Another 3 and out and the Cowboys had the ball back. Here’s the thing: The Cowboys had a 3 and out too. Amazing.
With the ball back, the 49ers let Carlos Hyde run some more to close out the quarter.
The 49ers stuck to rushing the ball for another 7 plays, leading to a Blaine Gabbert pass going into the ground at the line of scrimmage (not sure who he was targeting there, game said Vance McDonald). After that, he tried passing again and nailed Mike Davis for 15 yards...and Mike Davis got injured on the tackle. The play put the 49ers on the 7 yard line and Gabbert nailed Quinton Patton for a touchdown. Holy smokes! Madden has the 49ers tied!
Score: 7-7, TIE
The Cowboys must have snuck a look at the 49ers playbook, because they just started running Elliot on every down. Even when Prescott dropped back, he nailed the Cowboys bell cow for decent gains. The Cowboys kept pounding the rock until hitting the 49ers 20 yard line, when they couldn’t get anything done and had to settle for a field goal. Wow...the 49ers are actually holding.
Score 10-7, Cowboys
With 1:47 left in the half, the 49ers got the ball and Mike Davis re-entered the game, gashing the Cowboys defense for 4 yards a carry. Once crossing the 50 yard line, Gabbert elected to try this passing thing again, and got his ball batted away. This led to the 49ers punting with 53 seconds left on 4th and 2.
The Cowboys were able to air the ball out quickly to the 49ers 30 yard line. with 25 seconds left, Prescott lined up in the shotgun to try and put this away but took a NASTY sack by Eli Harold.
...And then Eli Harold was promptly injured.
The sack brought up 4th down and Dan Bailey made a 57 yard field goal to close out the half.
Score 13-7, Cowboys
The 49ers received and took a knee to close out the half
The 49ers did a whole lot of nothing on their opening drive, instead punting again for a touchback. A sack by Quinton Dial made short work and a 3 and out for the Cowboys. Unfortunately, the punt back put the 49ers on the 10 yard line and a Blaine Gabbert interception by Sean Lee put the Cowboys on the 1 yard line. You can guess what happens next. Yep, two point conversion.
Oh yeah, they had a touchdown too.
Score: 21-7, Cowboys
With the ball back, the 49ers called upon Carlos Hyde to run the ball...again. At the 50 yard line, 5 plays into the drive, Blaine Gabbert used his checkdown, Hyde for a nice 52 yard touchdown run. I guess that’s one way to do it.
Score 21-14, Cowboys
Getting the ball back, Prescott handed the ball off for one play, then nailed Dez Bryant deep for a 68 yard touchdown. Maybe I should have removed him...
Score 28-14, Cowboys
The 49ers punted on a 3 and out. The Cowboys went back to the balanced game, letting Elliot snag 4 yards a carry and passing 10 yards a clip and hitting the 50 yard marker to close out the quarter.
The gashing continued until the Cowboys hit the San Francisco 32 yard line. Then the defense showed up, and then we got to watch the Cowboys get more points, a 47 yard Dan Bailey field goal.
Score 31-14, Cowboys
The 49ers brought out the passing game, only for Torrey Smith and Quinton Patton to drop decent passes from Gabbert. Ugh. It brought another punt after a holding penalty back to the Cowboys. The running game chewed up some clock, but the 49ers were able to get a punt at the 1:15 mark. If you think in the optimism of Jim Tomsula, that means you only have to score two touchdowns and a field goal, plus get the three onside kicks to win this thing. Which could happen.
Instead, the 49ers went 3 and out. Why? One could guess. But they punted the ball away with 40 seconds to go and this one is pretty much over.
FINAL SCORE: 31-14, Cowboys
They call this a trap game. Well, you can trap the 49ers all you like, this one reeks of what I think may happen. I hate to admit it, but it’s true. I see this possibly happening. I don’t see Dez Bryant having such a huge TD catch, but besides that, I’d prepare myself for the possibility of this.
I wonder who we can draft for quarterback next year...