The New England Patriots faced off with the Dallas Cowboys in a battle of the East division leaders in Week 12. New England the leaders of the AFC East, while the Cowboys are atop the NFC East.
However, it was the Patriots that came out on top in the contest, winning 13-9.
One of the main reasons for that was Stephon Gilmore. The cornerback was instrumental in shutting down the superstar wide receiver of the Cowboys, Amari Cooper.
On the year, Cooper had 56 receptions for 886 yards and seven touchdowns heading into the game. After the game, Cooper has 56 receptions for 886 yards and seven touchdowns.
In case you didn't realize for some reason, those numbers did not change at all. That's right, Gilmore and the Patriots kept one of the best receivers in football from making any type of impact, as he had no stats outside of two targets.
After the game, Gilmore was asked about what shutting down Cooper said about him. Gilmore gave a pretty clever response.
Question: “If Amari Cooper is one of the best receivers in the league and you shut him down, what’s that say about you?”
Stephon Gilmore: “You just said it.”
— Nick Underhill (@nick_underhill) November 25, 2019
The cornerback is spelling it out for us. He believes he's one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL. That's impossible to argue with.
In fact, you could make a pretty strong argument for him being the best cornerback in the NFL, right alongside Jalen Ramsey.
You could argue that Cooper is inconsistent. He has massive games, but also quite a few duds. Those include games against the Detroit Lions and New Orleans Saints (we won't include the New York Jets because he was hurt for most of the contest).
However, the point still stands. More often than not, Cooper is terrorizing defenses. Outside of that Jets game where he had one catch but barely played due to injury, Cooper has had at least three receptions and 38 yards in each game this year. Gilmore and the Patriots didn't even allow him to keep his hands on the ball.
Gilmore's resume continues to grow, and it's getting harder and harder for even the biggest doubters to deny just how good he is.