The Dallas Cowboys will face the San Francisco 49ers on NBC's "Sunday Night Football" in a battle between two of the top tier teams in the NFC and, frankly, the entire NFL.
With such a classic rivalry on deck that's loaded with so many distinct memories — including two 49er playoff victories over Dallas the past two seasons — there's been no shortage of chatter throughout the week. Enter Micah Parsons, the Cowboys' relentless stud linebacker, who played things safe by showering both Christian McCaffrey and Brock Purdy with great praise.
Albeit, perhaps with some strange praise thrown in?
Things began as one might expect when discussing CMC, with standard quotes heard often, like he's "the most versatile back in the NFL" and his innate ability "to make people miss." But then, well then, things got a little confusing.
Here's the full quote that left possibly even Parsons confused:
"And you know Christian, he's always mindful of the ball. He's always high and tight. He's always in Dr. Pepper mode. He's just really good, and that's what you want out of your backs. Guys that are going to protect the ball and not turn it over, and same thing with Purdy. We got to try our best to reverse their tricks that they've been on."
Dr. Pepper Mode? Well, Parsons went on to say that "Dr. Pepper Mode" apparently means when a player has two fingers on the football to protect the ball in traffic. OK, sure. But he also went onto explain that he's not even sure why it's called "Dr. Pepper Mode," and that the Cowboys just happen to call it "Dr. Pepper Mode" in special teams meetings.
This clearly leaves us with more questions than answers, especially since not even Google knows what "Dr. Pepper Mode" means. A search of the term leads to a whole lot of nothing with the exception of the above referenced article Parsons used the term in.
As for Twitter, this was the best it could offer up.
I?m going Dr Pepper mode
— Tee ????? (@OddishHime) October 4, 2023
Not exactly the depth we were seeking, making this a classic circular route to nowhere.
But alas, throughout the process of exhausting all resources, a Dr. Pepper aficionado here at FanBuzz offered up some interesting reasoning behind the term. Since Christian McCaffrey wears No. 23 and Dr.Pepper famously advertises that the soda contains "23 flavors," perhaps there's a connection there?
Perhaps indeed. However, since Parsons specifically mentioned the Cowboys use the term in their special teams meetings, it does not appear to be a designation created for McCaffrey. So, for now, it would seem the mysterious case of "Dr. Pepper Mode" remains officially open. Possibly forever.
The only hope remaining is that Cris Collinsworth gets wind of this and says "Dr. Pepper Mode" at least 16 times during Sunday night's broadcast of what should be a tremendous football game.
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