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“I think it’s an encouraging sign compared to weeks past,” Cook said. “We had a couple of negative plays. Those definitely contributed to that a little bit, but we look forward for encouraging signs as far as getting that average up.”

Jerry Jones is always looking for encouraging signs, and the owner was slightly more upbeat 10 days after a demoralizing loss to the Redskins that had him questioning whether the Cowboys could make the playoffs.

“I am very hopeful, but I am realistic,” Jones said. “I know that we play teams that if we make some of the miscues that we made out there tonight … “

He didn’t have to finish the thought.