As I kicked back and enjoyed highlights of all 17 of the Cowboys’ games a couple weeks back, many players caught my eye with their surprising success. As everyone knows however, highlights always show the good, but not always the bad and the ugly. And with that, here are a few players I thought had disappointing years for the silver and blue.
Julius Jones tops this list without question in my mind. Going into a contract year, I expected Jones to have a breakout season and have success that would turn Jerry Jones’ head enough to re-sign Jones to a lucrative deal. That however was far from the case. Jones started all 16 regular season games, but failed to record a 100-yard outing. He amassed a mere 588 yards and only saw the end-zone twice this season. Many could argue that Jones’ lack of success was due to Marion Barber getting most of the carries later on in games. But it seemed as though Jones lacked the explosiveness and downhill style of Barber. Jones was often seen dancing around in the backfield trying to make something happen rather than hitting the hole. I feel that Jones’ performance this season will be his ticket out of Dallas via free agency. This year’s draft could produce arguably the best crop of running backs in 10 years, and I expect the Cowboys to nab one of these runners early in the draft.
As Plaxico Burress strolled into the endzone untouched on the very first play of the 2007 season, we all gave our best ‘here we go again’ look when we spotted Roy Williams trailing 10 yards behind Burress. The play ended up being a great summary for Williams’ season. Williams was frequently the guilty party for busted coverages and long touchdown passes. He was also the culprit for many long runs, often whiffing on the tackle trying to produce a big time hit. Although a vulnerability many a time this year, Roy Williams is still a major part of the Cowboys defense. All the babble about him being released or traded need to be silenced and talk of him moving to linebacker needs to be put to rest. He will return to Dallas at safety next year. Maybe his number change to 38 will bring back the welcomed sight of Roy laying a good lickin’ on wide receivers. And let’s hope that Dave Campo won’t teach an old dog new tricks, but revert him back to his old ones.
As Roy Williams was having his routine problems in coverage, Jacques Reeves was having issues of his own. Opposing quarterbacks routinely locked Reeves in their crosshairs, often with successful results. While Reeves possesses game-changing speed, he often looked lost in coverage and a step slower than everyone else. Although Reeves gained much game experience this season, it’s safe to say he won’t be Dallas’ top priority as far as re-signing goes. While they might bring Reeves back at the right price, he will more than likely end up in a different uniform next year. Look for Dallas to pick one of the stellar corners in the draft.