Cowboys blocked punt gaffe explained by NFL, Nahshon Wright repentant over error vs. Broncos

ARLINGTON, Texas — There were several chances for the Dallas Cowboys to get their act together in Week 9 against the Denver Broncos, but they never did. Instead, they looked like an understudy of themselves — forgetting their script and basically ad libbing and doing improv the entire game. They paid for it with a second loss on their otherwise stellar season, and one play in particular proved just how ready the Cowboys were to lose on Sunday, with rookie fourth-round pick Nahshon Wright taking center stage in the worst way.

Desperately trying to find some sort of traction after going down 16-0 to the Broncos, a diving interception by cornerback Jourdan Lewis was negated by a holding penalty against Trevon Diggs, and considering the Broncos were set to get the first possession of the third quarter, the penalty was the last thing the Cowboys could afford in that moment. They’d immediately get yet another shot at wildly swinging the momentum in their favor though, when they forced Teddy Bridgewater into a quick three-and-out to open the third quarter and deep in Broncos territory — clearing the way for what happened next.

Malik Turner, who himself had a good game on Sunday, burst through the line and blocked the punt from Sam Martin and, in that moment, it felt like the Cowboys would ignite a second half explosion to send the Broncos home with a loss. It was not to be, however, because the officiating crew awarded the ball to Denver with a new set of downs.

The league went on to explain why, via Twitter.

“The punt is blocked and goes beyond the line of scrimmage, where it’s touched by the receiving team. Since the receiving team touches the ball beyond the line of scrimmage, the kicking team is eligible to recover the ball. Denver recovers the ball, but cannot advance it.”

In other words, Wright shouldn’t have touched the ball after Turner blocked it, and the rookie admits he got…


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