EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones initially and purposefully tried to accentuate the positives in the aftermath of Sunday's devastating 24-22 loss to the formerly winless and hapless New York Jets.
He talked about how the Cowboys fought to get back in the game after trailing 21-3.
He spoke of the competitiveness of quarterback Dak Prescott, who fought valiantly despite being battered all game behind a broken down line.
But in the end, Jones couldn't escape the sad and disappointing reality of the state of his Cowboys team, losers of three straight.
It was the first time since 1999 that the Cowboys lost to a team 0-4 or worse.
The Cowboys came into the season with mandated hopes of at least reaching the NFC title game and possibly the Super Bowl for the first time since 1995.
How else do you explain coach Jason Garrett heading into the final season of his contract with the objective to get further than he did last season, when the Cowboys won the NFC East and a wild-card playoff game but lost in the divisional round?
A 3-0 start left Jones and the Cowboys with delusions of grandeur of possibly playing getting home-field advantage in the playoffs to better their chances of a super ending.
But no more.
Not after Sunday's sock in the face from the Jets, which Jones compared to getting "bloody nose."