Cowboys Head Coach Mike McCarthy (Post-Game Transcript)

On what happened during the last sequence with first-and-goal at the six-yard line and no score:

“I think stating the obvious, it’s a game of inches. We came up an inch or two short on a couple of plays. Loved the way our team plays. I love our play style. I’ll give the Eagles credit. It’s a great home environment here. I have a lot of appreciation for [Eagles Chairman & CEO] Jeff Lurie and what they’ve done here. I love to come here and compete. We knew this was the kind of game this was going to be. We came up short. It’s why we work the way we work. That’s what we’ll do. Get back to work. A lot of football left to be played. We had opportunities and we were in position to win the game.”


On the touchdown to Cowboys TE Luke Schoonmaker that was reversed:

“Based on what they had up on the jumbotron, it definitely- I can see why they overturned it. When they called out [the replay review] it could go either way. I mean, like I said, it’s a game of inches. We were short.”


On whether the loss affected his confidence:

“We had a chance to win that game. I don’t really think we were fighting back. We had the lead in the first half. We had that stretch of penalties there. It’s the ebb and flow of a football game. That’s the way these games go. They’re a very good team. We feel great about our team. We need to learn from these mistakes. That’s what these games come down to. You get into these types of games and even more so if you get into playoff football. You have to make one more play than the other team. That’s what this game was tonight. We needed to make one more play.”


On what it was like to get from their own 14-yard line to the Eagles six-yard line and not win the game:

“I’ll say this, we put a tremendous amount of time into those situations, more so than ever in my career, particularly the last three years. So, no I am not surprised at all because even that last throw, I mean, that’s something you practice a lot. I mean, even that last throw, that’s something you practice a lot, you don’t get to call, hopefully you are not calling it that much. Our guys were very comfortable in that situation and space and that’s because of the work they put in.”


On failing to score a touchdown on the last drive of the game:

“Yeah, I get what you are saying, it’s the ebb and flow of a football game, it’s back and forth. The second half, there were very little penalties called in the first half and then the penalties come into play for both teams in the second half.”


On what this team could be on the cusp of becoming:

“I’ll say this, I felt last week we kind of turned the corner, you know. I am a huge believer of you get what you put into it, whether it’s life or in the game of football. I thought our team really hit their stride going into last week’s game. Played well, did it again this week, came in here expecting to play well and win. So as long as we stay after that, there’s an ebb and flow in every game, but there’s a vibe that gets created. You get into a routine and you start building that momentum and so forth, and that’s why a win tonight would have been excellent because you get a nice chunk of confidence coming out of these wins. But we know who we are, so there’s no excuses. We needed to make one more play tonight and we didn’t do that.”


On the play of Cowboys wide receivers:

“I mean, that’s our offense and I think [Cowboys QB] Dak [Prescott] is the spirit of everything. His confidence that he has in all those guys. He doesn’t blink, he runs the offense, he goes through his reads, excellent communication by the coaches on the sideline, you know, prepping before every series. We’re getting better as an offense and the beauty is we have more growth in front of us.”


On QB Dak Prescott’s performance:

“I thought [Cowboys QB] Dak Prescott played extremely well. You know, in these circumstances it’s a tough place to play. I think, obviously, their defense and their defensive line, I think it’s clear, is the strength of their defense. And [Prescott] made plays with his feet, hung in there in the pocket, took hits, I thought he played his ass off.”


On how fourth-down gambles defined the game:

“You know, you go into a game, you have a game plan, you’re playing for fourth-down no different than first, second, and third-down. Calls were good, well-executed. Once again, give a lot of credit to players and coaches, just seeing the confidence. That’s how we want to play, we want to be aggressive, we want to attack the defense, and make sure we empty our bucket.”


On the Eagles’ two long third quarter drives:

“Well, the one drive, what’d we have, five penalties on it? You start off with the kickoff, you know, cover, that’s self-inflicted for the most part there, but I thought the defense did what they needed to do, they gave us the ball back and a chance to go win the game.”


On the decision to go for a touchdown rather than a field goal:

“Before every series there’s a particular – we have a process, [Cowboys Offensive Coordinator Brian Schottenheimer] knows before every series, during the series. Yeah, a lot of that’s done ahead of time.”


On the pressure the Eagles were able to have:

“I watched the line of scrimmage, I watched the quarterback, I watched the point of attack, there’s things I’m looking for that effect the way I call the next play. Everybody has responsibilities, where their eyes are supposed to be, every assistant coach: in the box. So, there’s plays they made, there’s plays we didn’t make. So that’s the part about two teams coming together and playing tough football.”


On clarifying decision to go for touchdown rather than field goal:

“It’s a process that – there’s a yard line you’re looking for, there’s a distance once you cross a certain yard line, whether it’s fourth-and-two, fourth-and-three, so that’s echoed before the series, during the series, we have individuals that are responsible for that. But yeah, we had planned on going for the touchdown before the series was called based on the time.”


On what the strategy was against Eagles WR A.J. Brown today to contain him and how effective it was:

“It’s a mix back and forth obviously because of the threat in the run game and with [Eagles QB] Jalen [Hurts]. But they’ve been throwing the ball a lot more. We played our defense and we played the matchups and need to give our guys some credit.”


On being two and a half games behind Philadelphia and how big of a challenge that is:

“What is it, November? A lot of football left in my opinion.”


On illegal formation penalty on Cowboys T Chuma Edoga:

“I was told he said he didn’t declare himself.”


On the last play of the game and whether he was looking to throw the ball and run it in or were you looking to throw to the endzone:

“We’re trying to get the ball. That route, you want that to come across. Obviously the penalty kicked it back a little further than you’d like to throw it-27 yard line. It’s a better play from the 25-yard line to get 17 [yards].”


On the delay of game:

“There was a miscommunication between the number two and three receiver. So when the formation was called we were in the three by two and just the number two and three receiver communication.”