On Sunday night, Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett singled out the young defensive line as the bright spot of what was an otherwise pretty ugly first half performance against the 49ers.
The Cowboys would go on to lose that preseason game 23-6, but the defense didn’t surrender a touchdown. Rather, the 49ers scored their touchdowns on defense (a pick-six by Mike Purcell in the second quarter) and special teams (Quinton Patton blocked a punt and recovered it in the end zone in the fourth quarter).
Also, the defensive line posted three sacks in the loss. Second-year defensive end Ben Gardner--really a redshirt rookie, as he missed all of last season with torn ligaments in his left shoulder--and rookie defensive end Ryan Russell each had a sack in the first half, and Randy Gregory got his second sack of the preseason in the second half.
“That was the bright spot of the game,” Garrett said, per the Dallas Morning News. “We were in some compromising positions on defense, bad field position and scoring opportunities for them. We kept them out of the end zone, had some timely sacks and that was impressive.”