Well, its been a while since I’ve blogged about the Dallas Cowboys and I’m not exactly sure why but I am back again and ready to fill everyone’s heads with the knowledge and opinions that I have as a die hard Cowboys’ fan.
The recent ups and downs that have followed since the bye week seems to be typical Dallas Cowboys’ football during the franchises recent history.
After an embarrassing 49-17 loss on the road to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday night in week 10, the Cowboys had much work to do in order to fix not only the reeling, NFL worst defense, but also the offense that has been underplaying in pretty much every game this season except for the Broncos game in week 5.
Following the bye week, I and probably many other Cowboys’ fans started to feel like the team was back on track and ready to make a late season playoff push. The Cowboys went into the Meadowlands to face their division rival foe the New York Giants who had won 4 straight heading into that match up. Dallas looked balanced on offense and the defense made enough plays to put an end to their winning streak with a final, game winning drive that Dan Bailey capped off with a field goal. A win that many didn’t expect out of the Cowboys because of their recent struggles.
The next game came on a short week because of the Cowboys’ annual Thanksgiving game. They hosted the Oakland Raiders who had recently made a change in Matt McGloin at quarterback over Terrelle Pryor who was the opening day starter. Heading into that game the Raiders hoisted one of the leagues premier rushing attacks even without starter Darren McFadden who seems to always be bitten by the injury bug. The Cowboys played very poor in the first half and you started to get the sense that they didn’t carry their momentum from the Giants victory where they played a great game as a whole team. It was looking like the same old Cowboys. Then in the second half the defense became very stout and the offense found a spark from second year back Lance Dunbar who rushed for 82 yards and Demarco Murray scored 3 tds on the ground to go along with 63 yards of his own. The team totaled 144 yards on the ground and 30 carries to defeat the Raiders and start 2-0 after the bye.
With the Cowboys though, you can never believe what you see. Especially when it comes to the 2 games that followed the Raiders game.
In week 14 the Cowboys went on the road to face the Chicago Bears who have been without their starting quarterback Jay Cutler for some time now and had to go with Josh McCown. The Cowboys looked as if they were gonna continue their success when they went right down the field on the first drive of the game, driving down on the back of Demarco Murray who has really been re-surging as of late, and ended the drive with a quick 2 yard fade to star wide out Dez Bryant.
The drive was as smooth of a drive as I have seen all year from the Cowboys. I felt like it was going to be easy.
Then the defense showed why they are ranked dead last in the NFL.
The Bears had 8 drives in the game and scored a touchdown or field goal on every single drive. They did not punt ONCE.
Eventually the game got so out of hand that Kyle Orton came in for the Cowboys at QB for the last drive of the game. The beating was embarrassing again.
It was again the Cowboys being the Cowboys. This game was different though. I finally started to see something that never really occurred to me before until that game. Romo showed no spark during the game that has made him a tantalizing quarterback all throughout his career. He continually checked down the ball even with no pressure in his face and wouldn’t give his receivers much time to get open. He targeted Dez 4 times and Witten only 3. On 4th down late in the game where they had to go for it, Romo decided to throw ball short of the first down marker even though he knew he had to get the first down in that situation. He didn’t even give his receivers a chance to get the ball. You have to at least throw it down field there in order to have a chance. He seemed too conservative all game and I’m not sure if the criticism of him screwing up late in games had gotten to him so he took the easy way out or if the play calling which has been questionable all year was the problem. The Cowboys lost 45-28 but the game was a lot worse than the final score says.
The Cowboys next game was at home against the Green Bay Packers who would be without Aaron Rodgers again because of his collar bone injury. On the season to that point the Cowboys were 5-1 at home so I felt very confident that they would bounce back because that’s how the Cowboys play. They always seem to bounce back and play really well the week after a defeat and play bad the week after a victory. It’s just their M.O.
It seemed like this was the case yet again during the first half when the Cowboys totaled over 320 yards of offense which was team high for the season in the first half and amazing for any team in the first half of a ball game and the defense allowed only 3 points and got a takeaway. It seemed like the game was going to be easy when the halftime score read 26-3.
All-time, teams are 420 plus and 5 when leading by 20 points at halftime. Whenever you lose a game when you are up by 20 points or more at halftime, you know their is something really wrong with a team, if not the whole franchise. Starting from the top with Jerry Jones thinking he’s the greatest owner ever to Jason Garrett never showing any signs of being a human being with his monotone, unemotional post-game interviews. The coaches on Garretts staff, starting with him, are past their effectiveness in terms of their schemes. Kiffin’s Tampa 2 defense has been exploited for years now and is obsolete; Callahan’s scheme, if it even is his scheme and not Garrett’s, is unbalanced to a point where every expert analyst around the league sees that it’s unacceptable with the talent level at running back that the Cowboys have in Demarco Murray. Murray was averaging 7.4 yards per carry and had 140 plus yards against the Packers and for some reason Romo or the offensive play callers decided not to run the ball down the stretch when the team was up by 12 points and defense couldn’t stop the Matt Flynn led Green Bay offense, allowing 5 touchdowns on 5 straight drives in the second half. It was a total team failure in the second half and it resulted in a final score of Green Bay 37, Dallas 36.
At this point it doesn’t even matter if the Cowboys somehow make the playoffs by winning these next two games. There is no chance that they do anything special with the way this defense is and the lack of intelligence on the offense, whether it’s the QB or the coordinator/head coach.
Jerry HAS to fire Garret, Callahan, and Kiffin at the end of the season and accept that he made mistakes in hiring them way past their effectiveness and putting his trust in them. If he doesn’t, the same old results will follow in the coming years and more Cowboys’ collapses will occur.
Peace! P.S. Sorry for any who read these articles, no excuses for not writing these past couple weeks and hence why this article was so long.
The Cowboys still have a slight chance! So lets go!