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Cowboys QB Dak Prescott on upset loss to Cardinals: 'It sucks, it's humbling'

Two weeks of Dallas Cowboys dominance came to a stunning end in Week 3.

Adorned with flowers after beginning their season in such imposing fashion, the Cowboys crashed down to the any-given-Sunday reality of the NFL with their 28-16 loss to the previously winless Arizona Cardinals.

"Y'all put us on top of the world," said Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott, who was 25 of 40 for 249 yards, a touchdown and a critical interception. "We knew who we are. In that same sense, I'm sure the media got what it wanted. For us, there hadn't been but one undefeated team. It sucks, it's humbling, but to say it's a wake-up call, we knew we had a lot of adversity and we just didn't get it done. It just goes back to myself, the offense, in the red zone. We get better there, we win this game. But we've got to fix that area, period."

The Cowboys (2-1) were an ugly 1 of 5 in the red zone, culminating with a Prescott pick in the end zone with 3:05 left by Kyzir White that expunged any thoughts of a rousing Cowboys comeback.

The red zone woes were but one of many head-scratching statistics on the day for Dallas, though.

The Cowboys ran 75 plays to the Cardinals' 53 but lost by 12 points. They also won the time of possession battle by more than nine minutes. Dallas' defense allowed 400 yards of offense to Arizona after allowing 386 combined in its first two games. The Cowboys also committed an eyebrow-lifting 13 penalties for 107 yards.

Of course, the most glaring was quite simple: The Cowboys walloped their first two foes -- the New York Giants and New York Jets -- by a combined 70-10 score and somehow came away on the wrong end against a Cardinals team thought by many to be destined for the NFC West cellar.

"That's the challenge of this league, you know, every game is so unique to the specific matchups and so forth. This has been a rough week on a lot of fronts," said head coach Mike McCarthy, whose team lost cornerback Trevon Diggs for the season earlier in the week. "I think the amount of adversity you go through, your preparation process, and we didn't have enough today. The discipline and the penalties.

"We have to learn from this. It's going to be an every-week challenge."

For a team that hadn't faced a challenge in its first two weeks, though, Sunday's outcome was shocking.

Still, it came against a Cardinals team once coached by the late Dennis Green, who memorably coined the phrase, "if you want to crown them, then crown their ass," after a loss to a Super Bowl-favorite Chicago Bears team. Only Arizona didn't let Dallas off the hook this time around and collected rookie head coach Jonathan Gannon's first win in the process.

By Prescott's account, though, the Cowboys aren't crowning themselves. They know the journey has just begun to the ultimate destination.

"We're staying in the moment. That's who we are. That's who this team is," said Prescott, who was playing behind an offensive line missing two starters. "This was a humbling loss in that sense. Obviously, we've had a lot of adversity just throughout the week. It wasn't easy. Nobody's making excuses. I thought we had a great opportunity to come in and, even with the adversity, get a win. Obviously, every week you've got to reset and refocus, and honestly, it's a little bit easier after a loss. So, there's not going to be any worries about that."

Whether this was adversity the Cowboys were unable to overcome or an opponent they looked past upsetting them remains to be seen. The first semblance of an answer on that front will come in Week 4 against the New England Patriots.

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