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New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Demario Davis (56) tackles Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott (21) during the second half Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX.

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was referring to his own team Thursday night.

But his statement could have applied to the team in the much quieter visitors' locker room at AT&T Stadium as well.

"I really think this bunch is going to take this and really be a different team over the next four ballgames," Jones said.

Just how different the New Orleans Saints are for the final four games of the season after Thursday's 13-10 loss to the Cowboys remains to be seen.

Will they return to Super Bowl-looking form, using Thursday's setback to refocus for the final stretch of the regular season?

Or did Thursday provide the formula on how to slow down the NFL's most prolific offense?

The next four weeks will tell the tale as the Saints look to prove they are who they showed the previous 10 games — instead of who they were Thursday night, when they suffered their first loss in 81 days.

"We were rolling," center Max Unger said. "We had a good formula, we were in a good rhythm and for whatever reason we fell out of that. It's up to us to try to look back and see what we did well and try to recover that momentum."

Coming off what was a rugged three-game stretch in 11 days, the Saints now get some extra days off before next Sunday's road trip to play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

It'll be a chance to rest and a time to heal, physically and mentally, after the most dismal offensive performance of the Sean Payton-Drew Brees era. The Saints put up just 176 yards of offense in their loss.

"So now it's time to get that mojo back," Drew Brees said.

Not that a team really loses its mojo with one game.

The stars, not just the giant blue one painted at midfield at AT&T Stadium, were almost aligned for this one.

For the Cowboys, this one was like a Super Bowl, which is how their owner told them to approach the game. They matched Jones' request from the opening possession, playing with an energy the Saints weren't able to match.

A Saints team that hadn't really been tested the past few weeks suddenly got tested and couldn't quite respond. The Cowboys punched, and the Saints offense didn't punch back.

"If you said, 'Do you expect the Saints to have 10 points at the end of the game?' I would probably laugh at you and call your bluff," defensive end Cam Jordan said.

Jordan said the defense, despite seven sacks and forcing two turnovers, could have done more as well.

"It is something we are going to have to take and stew over the weekend," Jordan said. "This is something that is going to leave a bad taste in our mouths for a while."

Was it a loss the team needed to help the team refocus?

Cornerback Marshon Lattimore didn't think so.

"We want to win no matter what," Lattimore said. "It's not a reality check. This is the NFL. We can lose on any given Sunday, any Thursday, any Monday. We just have to go back in and get it right as a team."

The task now is to put that game in the rearview mirror and look to the critical last four games of the season. After the road trip to Tampa, the Saints play at Carolina before back-to-back games against the Pittsburgh Steelers and Carolina.

"Whether you win or whether you lose, it's the same process," tight end Ben Watson said. "You have to dissect the tape. We may play (Dallas) again. We may not play them again. It doesn't really matter at this point. What matters is moving to next week. We have a few extra days to digest this and comb through the details to get ready for our next opponent."

Unger said the team is ready to respond.

"This locker room is mature enough to recognize that loss for what it was," Unger said. "We just couldn't get a rhythm going. It's just recognizing those factors and not putting ourselves in that position again, just kinda moving forward. This is 100 percent commitment and back to work. Examine everything and get back to what we are doing and kinda reload for the start of the fourth quarter of the season."

Follow Rod Walker on Twitter, @rwalkeradvocate.