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 the current Cowboys are far and wide from their dynastic teams of that era, and Johnson was among those confused by the final game of their 19-12 loss to the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.
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Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys carries the ball during the second quarter of the NFC Divisional Playoff game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi’s Stadium on January 22, 2023 in Santa Clara, California. (Thearon W Henderson/Getty Images)
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 any chance of evening the score. Running back Ezekiel Elliott was the center for Dallas, and no other offensive linemen surrounded him. Instead, the linemen were placed far to the left and right of the line of scrimmage, and it was clear the Cowboys were going to try something crazy in their final attempt.
COWBOYS’ MIKE MCCARTHY EXPLAINS BIZAR END OF THE GAME: ‘THIS WAS OBVIOUSLY NOT THE PLAN’
Pro Football Hall of Fame member Jimmie Johnson during the Hall of Fame press conference during the NFL Honors at the Adrienne Arsht Center on February 1, 2020 in Miami, FL. (Rich Grässle/PPI/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
When Elliott snatched the ball – he was quickly run over by a 49ers pass rusher – Prescott had a quick drop before throwing to rookie KaVontae Turpin, who was immediately hit to end the game. Turpin’s lineman couldn’t reach Jimmie Ward fast enough for the block, and it was easy for the veteran cornerback to seal the deal.
The play was heavily criticized online. McCarthy explained that the result was not what they had envisioned.
Dallas Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy looks on before a game against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Divisional Playoff game at Levi’s Stadium on January 22, 2023 in Santa Clara, California. (Thearon W Henderson/Getty Images)
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“Yeah, it didn’t get going,” McCarthy said on NBC Sports Bay Area. “I really don’t want to go into detail, but obviously that wasn’t the plan. It’s obviously a game of gadgets or whatever.
Ryan Gaydos is Sports Editor at Fox News Digital.