This article is part of our NFL Observations series.
It was hard not to have the NFFC playoffs in mind for the opening of Week 14. The playoffs span Weeks 14-16, and the top team (in my contest) wins $200,000. I have the 21st-most points scored, so the team has a chance, but I'm weak at quarterback, having drafted (and dropped) Mitchell Trubisky as my top signal caller. (I'm rolling with Tom Brady this week, FWIW.)
I didn't like seeing Dak Prescott and and Amari Cooper cashing in during garbage time. Neither had a huge game, but before the Cowboys' final TD, they would have delivered major duds for my competition.
• Prescott was already leading the NFL in passing yards by a wide margin, and another 334 makes it likely he'll win the passing title. He did not play especially well though – he was indecisive and not always accurate. A few drops didn't help, either.
• Ezekiel Elliott had a good fantasy showing – two TDs, 93 total yards, but his involvement in the passing game has shrunk.
• Michael Gallup led the team with 10 targets and 109 yards, but he cost Prescott and the team with a big drop. Cooper got his, thanks to garbage time.
• Who lasts longer, Brett Maher (missed FG, out of bounds kick-off) or Jason Garrett?
• Trubisky had a monster game, but no receiver had more than 56 yards. In fact, the leader was tight end J.P. Holtz, a player of whom I had never heard prior to his first catch. The key for Trubisky was his scrambling – 10 for 63 yards and a TD. He also slid and went out of bounds often, not maxing out his rushes as though he were still protecting against an injury. But this was last year's Trubisky who despite not being aesthetically pleasing was a moderately effective real-life player and a viable fantasy option.
• Matt Nagy called a good game, kept the Cowboys off balance and played to Trubisky's strengths. I have no idea why it took 13 weeks to get there.
• David Montgomery runs hard and breaks a ton of tackles. He doesn't have much long speed or wiggle, but he's good at punishing the defense. He did lose a fumble on a play he extended too far, churning in traffic until the ball was finally stripped.
• How is Cordarrelle Patterson available every offseason? The guy is one of the best kick returners of all time, and he had the move of the game on a short catch that wound up going 33 yards and converting a key third down.
• The Bears plus three at home was a gift. How the Cowboys were laying a field on the road against a non-doormat boggles the mind.