DALLAS COWBOYS

Cole Beasley defends Cowboys maligned receiver unit: 'We're just getting open'

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FRISCO, Texas — Look elsewhere if you want to find blame for the Dallas Cowboys offensive struggles.

That's according to Cole Beasley and the Cowboys receivers, who point to the game tape to show they're getting open. They're not pointing the finger at quarterback Dak Prescott, but are clearly not comfortable with taking the blame for the Cowboys' 435 combined passing yards through three games, which is the second-fewest in the league.

"We're just getting open. That's all we can do," Cole Beasley said. "If you watch the tape, that's all you've got to do. A lot of people aren't watching the tape. They're just assuming. That's fine."

The passing game has fared better when the tempo is fast. After falling behind in Weeks 1 and 3, the passing game fared better playing catch up. In the Week 2 win, Prescott came out fast with a long touchdown strike to Tavon Austin and then struggled for two quarters with a more methodical approach.

"It's been working. You feel it. We're moving the ball. I don't know if it's that they're changing their defense or what but it's working," said Beasley, who leads Dallas with 12 receptions for 132 yards. For perspective, Saints' receiver Michael Thomas is averaging 12.6 catches a game. Vikings receiver Adam Thielen had 14 receptions last week against the Bills.

The frustration is hard to hide, but that runs throughout the entire offense.

"Any receiver is frustrated when you get the ball three times. But any playmaker wants the ball and if they say they don't they're lying," said Beasley, who said Prescott is handling it well. "Nobody is down in the dumps or anything. In our room, we get satisfaction out of getting separation whether the ball comes our way or not."

Allen Hurns said feeling frustrated is part of the game. Hurns has four catches for 51 yards and been targeted nine times.

"Across the board [on offense], a lot of people are frustrated," he said. "That's the thing about a season. There are ups and downs. One week can't solve it. You have to come in each week and have that faith that things are going to get on a roll. You can't let things linger."

Cowboys offensive coordinator Scott Linehan suggested a lack of experience between Prescott and his receivers.

"I'd just say we've got to trust some of the things more I think," he said. "Stress when we have things, if we've got those plays, and we feel like our guys are running and winning [routes] and doing the things that they need to do ... and as he gets to know them and get more of a background with them, he's going to start having more success with that."

The receivers, however, are running the right routes and are getting open.

"Everybody. It's not just me," Beasley said. "We've got guys who can run routes and get open on this team. It's that simple. All we can do is control what we control and get open and when the ball comes our way, catch it."

Beasley wasn't just trying to defend the receiving corps. He also defended Prescott.

"There are lot of things that keep the ball from getting to a receiver. A lot of variables," he said. "You can't just point at one unit, ever. Unless we were on tape not getting open, then you could say that. But until then, if you just look at stats, of course, people are going to say that we're not good or horrible. If you look at the opportunities you'd know better."

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