Understandably lost in the Cowboys’ weird, head-scratching overtime loss to the Cardinals on Sunday in Arizona is that Mat McBriar played about as well as he could have against the Cardinals and dynamic rookie punt returner Patrick Peterson.
The Cowboys made no secret of their plan to keep the ball out of Peterson’s hands, and McBriar said in the days leading up to the game that he believed, if he did his job, the Cowboys could shut the rookie LSU product down--and they did. Peterson, who is the only player in NFL history with four punt returns of 80-plus yards in a season, only had one return. Following McBriar’s punts, ESPN Dallas’s Tim MacMahon points out today, Arizona started at their own 20, 11, 10, 5 and 3--an average starting point of just inside the 10-yard line.
McBriar has struggled of late with a case of drop foot in his plant foot but, judging by his performance on Sunday, and the fact that he was able to return to his holding duties, he’s beginning to feel better.
“I feel pretty good,” McBriar said, per ESPN Dallas. “I don’t have any real concerns. I feel like I’m punting better and better in practice and getting back to it. The pain that I was experiencing initially, that’s gone.”
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