Flashback: Dallas vs San Diego – 1980

Here we go with another Flashback post with a team Dallas does not have much history with. Dallas only owns a 6-2 record against the San Diego Chargers. After looking through the eight games nothing really stood out, so I decided to go old school. The Cowboys and the Chargers had a lot in common back in the early 1980’s just like they do today. A lot of talent, but just could not get over that hump to greatness.

Both teams were filled with star players back in 1980. The Chargers had an explosive offense with quarterback Dan Fouts, running back Chuck Muncie, wide receivers John Jefferson and Charlie Joiner and tight end Kellen Winslow. The Cowboys were also filled with stars like Danny and Randy White, Tony Dorsett, Drew Pearson and Tony Hill, Harvey Martin, Ed Jones, Dennis Thurman.

The Chargers offense started off quick in the first quarter on their first possession. Dan Fouts worked the team down the field on a few completions to John Jefferson and they found themselves on the Dallas 27 yard line when the drive stalled. Chargers kicker Rolf Benirschke kicked a 45 yard field goal to take the lead 3-0.

The Cowboys put together a drive of their own on their first possession, but kicker Rafael Septien missed his field goal attempt which would have tied the game.

The Dallas defense collected what would be their first of seven turnovers by the Chargers. Cornerback Steve Wilson jumped in front of a Fouts pass at the Dallas 30 yard line and returned it all the way to the Chargers 35 yard line. Danny White drove the Cowboys down to the 4 yard line where Ron Springs scored, putting the Cowboys ahead 7-3.

Early in the second quarter Septien missed yet another field goal attempt. From that point on the Chargers offense put it in high gear. The Chargers first touchdown of the game came when Fouts passed to Charlie Joiner. But after being hit by Steve Wilson the ball bounced off of Wilson and into the hands of John Jefferson who raced for the score from 58 yards out. This gave the Chargers a 10-7 lead.

On the Cowboys next series Danny white threw his only interception of the game, but it turned out to be a score for San Diego. The Dallas offense was backed up on their own 8 yard line and White attempted a pass to backup running back James Jones. White was intercepted by San Diego’s Woodrow Lowe who returned it 16 yards for the touchdown. This increased the Chargers lead to 17-7.

The Cowboys put together a 75 yard drive on their next possession and closed the lead to three points. White connected with Butch Johnson on a 17 yard touchdown pass as the second quarter was winding down.

San Diego was not done with their second quarter scoring as they scored their third touchdown of the quarter. Fouts drove his team 65 yards in only five plays and capped it with his second touchdown pass of the half. Kellen Winslow caught the nine yard touchdown pass and the Chargers went into halftime with a 24-14 lead on the Cowboys.

As the second quarter would be owned by the Chargers with 21 points. It was the Cowboys turn in the third quarter. White drove the Cowboys to the Chargers 10 yard line. But on first down White fumbled the snap and backup tight end Jay Saldi alertly picked it up and ran it down to the two yard line. From there Timmy Newsome scored and pulled the Cowboys back to within three points, 24-21.

The Dallas defense got the ball back for the offense and once again it was Danny White who led the team deep into Chargers territory. During the drive it was White who faked a punt from his own 39 yard line on a fourth and 11. White gained 12 yards to keep the drive going. Sitting at the Chargers one yard line it was Timmy Newsome once again scoring and putting the Cowboys back in the lead 28-24.

The Dallas defense went back to work and got the ball back again. This time it was Randy White who forced Chuck Muncie to fumble and linebacker Anthony Dickerson recovered at the Chargers 11 yard line. Two plays later White threw his second touchdown pass of the game as he hit Jay Saldi from 12 yards out. The Cowboys had scored their second touchdown in a 2:31 span and also their third of the quarter. They took a 35-24 lead into the fourth quarter.

As the fourth quarter started Fouts and the Chargers tried to pull closer. Fouts went deep to Winslow. Charlie Waters tipped the ball and Winslow came down with it and raced towards the end zone. Dallas cornerback Aaron Mitchell hit Winslow and forced a fumble at the Dallas 15 yard line. Dennis Thurman scooped up the loose ball and returned it up to the 29 yard line.

The Dallas defense came up with another interception on the Chargers next drive. Dallas took advantage as White threw his third touchdown pass of the game as he connected with Billy Joe DuPree from nine yards out. Dallas took a commanding 42-24 lead on the Chargers.

The Cowboys could have added more points, but Septien missed his third field goal of the game from 44 yards out on the Cowboys next possession.

The Chargers made it a little closer as the game was about to end as Fouts threw his third touchdown pass of the game and second to Winslow.

The Cowboys came away with a 42-31 win against the San Diego Chargers which improved their season record to 6-2. The Dallas offense gained 425 yards on the Chargers as Danny White threw for 260 yards and three touchdowns. White also connected with nine different receivers. Keep in mind that the game was played without Tony Dorsett who was out with an injury.Ron Springs filled in for Dorsett and ran for 61 yards on 13 carries.

Although the Chargers came up short in this game their offense was still explosive as Fouts threw for 371 yards and three touchdowns. It was his four interceptions that really hurt his team. Chuck Muncie ran for 71 yards. John Jefferson had 160 yards for the game and Charlie Joiner had 110 yards. The Chargers offense gained 449 yards on the Dallas defense.

“Our offense played very well, particularly in the second half.” observed head coach Tom Landry. It was a great game, a very important one for us. It was one we needed to win.”

“No, things weren’t going by design out there tonight,” White said. “They had a great pass rush and we were able to salvage a lot of busted plays, particularly in the second half. Things seemed to bounce their way in the first half but we got ours in the second.”

You can view the box score here…


Can the Boys Do It?

Tony RomoRumor has it that the Cowboys are a small favorite in this Sunday’s game against San Diego despite the fact that San Diego is on a 7 game win streak. We all know about the notorious problem Dallas has had in the last month of the season. After last week’s disappointing loss to the Giants, I have to question if the Cowboys really do have a jinx on them. Their running game was all but shut down. However, Romo did have quite the passing game. But games cannot be won in the air alone.

Dallas has some very tough games ahead of them even after the Chargers. Week 15 will have our Boys in New Orleans playing a team that is 12-0 so far, possibly 13-0 after this weekend if the Saints get past Atlanta. Then the last 2 games are against division rivals Redskins and Eagles. Sure, the Redskins are 3-9 but after their near win against the Saints, I wouldn’t count them out as a team that could beat the Cowboys. Also, the Eagles have been playing some solid ball and with Vick showing how he can score by passing and running one in, they are dangerous. They completely dominated the Falcons this last week. Since they’re now tied with the Cowboys for the division lead, they’ll be out for blood the rest of the season.

The Cowboys have got to jump start their running game. We all know Barber, Choice, and Jones have the talent to do what needs to be done but they just haven’t been doing it. None of them have had 100 yard+ games in a while. Romo has been playing well, not making the silly mistakes like he did before. It’s been a relief to see him play like he truly wants it, that the hunger for a win has finally returned. Now if the rest of the team could get hungry, they’ll be a force to be reckoned with.

Even though my faith in the Boys has been rattled a bit, I still believe they can do it as long as the defense doesn’t allow too many points and the offense can get a good running game going. Another key thing is to not be allowing so many senseless penalties to hurt them. I’m sick of the Cowboys being a joke amongst other team’s fans because of their December “curse”. They need to pull their heads out of their butts and concentrate on putting points on the board….and not allowing their opponents to do the same.

A Giant Disappointment

Tony RomoHere it is the month of December and we have lost already, however this time it is under very different circumstances. Tony Romo had a career day in New York this weekend and nobody is giving him any credit at all. They are all focused on how the team lost. I just know sooner or later the loss will be blamed on him. This loss hurts really bad, and I think I might just know what the problem is. Hear me out on this guys.

Our team has a serious lack of athletes in the skill positions. Felix Jones is not the guy we drafted right now. Roy Williams, well he just plain and simple is not much of an athlete. Marion Barber is a bruiser but not very athletic. Tashard Choice has his spurts but nothing really big this year, besides the one run against Oakland.

We do have Miles Austin, who i believe will make his first Pro Bowl this season. But if you really think about it, all we have is Austin. That just isn’t good enough, not for this division, this conference, or this entire league.

We tend to get guys who give us flashes of brilliance and then make us say, “Just wait, IF he gets consistent this team will be good,” or “If it wasn’t for injuries, he would be special.” Why does our team seem to miss when it comes to players who are consistent and relatively injury free?

I said it last year, do not trade for Roy. Wait until the draft and get Percy Harvin or Hakeem Nicks. Well that idea is looking really good right now considering what they both are doing in Minnesota and New York. We need somebody else besides Austin and Witten (even Witten is not athletic, he is just very skilled) that the defense will be scared of. I can tell you right now, they are not afraid of our running game anymore. I can guarantee they are not because of the inconsistency.

The NFC East tightened up really quick after Philadelphia won in Atlanta. So next week if the Giants beat the Eagles and Dallas losses, there will be a 3-way tie for first place in the division with only 3 games left.

We need to step up and be champions for the next two weeks, vs. San Diego and at New Orleans. After that we play Washington and Philly again. We will be embarrassed again if we continue playing the way we are now.

I love the Dallas Cowboys with all my heart and I hate when I see them struggling and losing games they should win. It hurts. Somebody needs to step up RIGHT NOW.

Oh No, Not Again

New York GiantsLast Sunday game against the Giants was another rerun, one that has played over and over again in recent years. I have talked about it before, and sadly it seems I will be talking about it for a while still.

Watching the game, I remember being extremely happy that we scored on a great touchdown catch by Roy Williams, I was ecstatic. Up 10-0, looking as if we would be able to beat the Giants with less than 2 minutes before halftime and we had been doing a good job on shutting down the Giants. Then it happened. The defense let them go down and score pretty easily.

I ran upstairs to check on my son and came back down and see we are losing 14-10. I thought, what in the world happened!?

Come to find out, Marion Barber had fumbled the ball back to the Giants. Then I seen the replay of Brandon Jacobs running for a 74-yard touchdown. I was in shock, to say the least!

All of my dreams of beating the Giants were being shattered. Then it gets worse. We let them run back a punt for a touchdown. That’s when it really became a nightmare.

So continues the talk of how we can’t win a game in December. We definitely have to do something to stop this pattern.

We have the Chargers coming up and then the almighty, undefeated Saints. The Cowboys really need to figure out how to win in December or else we will be left sitting at home watching the Eagles win the division and head to playoffs.

Inconsistency Is Killing Me

Mad, Frustrated, Depressed you name it that’s how I am feeling.  I am so sick and tired of watching a different team every week.  This is a frustration blog and I NEED to get it out.  Week in and week out the Cowboys play different.  One week, a GREAT game, flawless and the next they look like my old high school team could beat them.

What is the problem you may ask?  Well ya know what, I am asking that same question.  WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?????  The Cowboys have 3 of the best running backs in the league, the BEST tight end in the league, and a top 10 quarterback in the league.  Why can’t they move the ball down the field like they should?

This last Sunday Romo sat down with hall of famer Michael Irvin for a one on one conversation. Unfortunately, due to work, I was only able to catch bits and pieces of it.  One thing I did hear Michael Irvin ask Romo was:

“What makes the team this year different from last year?”

Romo said, “When we lose, no one points the finger at one person or another, they look at themselves and say, what can I do to make this team better?”

Yes that is the answer that every fan out there wants to hear. But on top of that, we all want to SEE that happen.  We want to see this team IMPROVE from week to week.  Honestly, I think discipline is a major factor in the locker room, on the practice field and during games.  While I am watching a game and lets say a penalty happens, heads hang down.  No one gets mad and screams and hollers at anyone for causing the team 5, 10, 15 or more yards. COME ON!!!! Someone get mad, someone scream, someone put fire into this team, IT IS EXACTLY WHAT WE NEED!!!!!!

I have been a Cowboys fan ever since I was a little boy sitting in front of the TV with my dad.  Over 30 years and I am not ever going to change that, but it is about time the team changes how they play before other fans out there decide that “Amercia’s Team” is not so hot afterall. Screw the December hex, screw the critics, screw the haters, PLAY SOME SERIOUS BALL!!!!!!!!!!

A Folk’d Up Kicking Situation

After missing five field goals in the last four games, the Cowboys are starting to worry about their kicking situation. Nick Folk was automatic his rookie year making the pro bowl in 2007 and continued to shine in 2008. He had hip surgery in the offseason and didn’t resume kicking until training camp. This season Folk has missed 8 of 24 attempts.

It’s possible he’s just having an off year and after missing his normal offseason training and routine because of surgery it certainly explains why he’s struggling.

But its also possible that the misses aren’t completely Folk’s fault. As stated by the coaches, it could be a combination of things. Folk automatically gets the blame because he’s the kicker but there is also the long snapper and the holder in the mix.

“The hold, the snap, the kick, the coach,” special teams coordinator Joe DeCamillis said, including himself in the equation. “We’ve got to get it squared away.”

“I’m worried that it’s a combination of confidence more than anything,” Wade Phillips said. “They work all the time on it. Those guys spend a lot of practice time snapping and holding, snapping and holding. That’s what they do and kicking. I would feel like we would have more confidence than we’ve had. Whether it’s working into the kicker or the holder or whoever, we’ve got to determine what we need to do there and go forward.”

“I’m not losing any faith in Nick at all,” DeCamillis said. “I’ve been around this thing for 22 years, and I’ve seen them miss ’em and I’ve seen them make ’em. They go through stretches just like any other player. Unfortunately for him, it’s right out in the open for everybody to see.”

Both Wade Phillips and Joe DeCamillis are confident in Nick Folk’s ability so it doesn’t seem like any big changes are coming, but they will be working on some of the details and smaller aspects of the field goal unit.

Rookie kicker David Buehler is excellent on kickoffs but not as accurate or consistent when it comes to field goals.

Don’t expect to see any noticeable changes any time soon. It’s likely they will just practice more and try to correct the problem.

Hopefully the crowd can get back to cheering “FOLK YEAH!” very soon.

And So Another December Starts… Badly!!

So the Cowboys stood at 8-3. A two game lead over the NY Giants with an opportunity to send the Giants to a 6-6 record and pretty much end their season. We all know the December history with this team over the last three seasons and we have all heard the talk this past week. The Cowboys then open a 10-0 lead on the Giants late in the second quarter and well…that’s where it kind of ended.

The Cowboys took a 10-0 lead on the Giants with a nice Romo to Williams touchdown pass. They had the Giants just were they wanted them. The once mighty 5-0 Giants now at 6-5 and little or no confidence in the way they were playing. So what does the Dallas defense do when they have the Giants down? Well, you would think they would step on their throats and end it for them. But no, they allow the Giants to drive down the field and score to tighten the game to 10-7 and give the Giants some life.

Next possession for the Cowboys with a little over a minute left in the first half. The Cowboys try to answer the Giants touchdown, but then Marion Barber fumbles. The Giants take full advantage of the turnover and score the go ahead touchdown right before halftime. Dallas had the Giants on their knees begging for mercy, but just like in past seasons the Cowboys let a team off the hook and gave them life.

Third quarter…Romo leads the offense to the go ahead score on another touchdown to Williams, 17-14. You think the Dallas defense would try to respond once again. But….it took the Giants only one play to take the lead back. A short pass to Jacobs resulted in a 74 yard go ahead for good touchdown. Here is my question. How does the defense let something like this happen? I honestly thought the Dallas defense was still on the sideline after the kickoff. But then I saw Anthony Spencer, Bradie James and Gerald Sensabaugh. But Spencer might have well been on the sideline as Jacobs ran away from him like he was standing still.

Onto the fourth quarter as the Cowboys held the Giants to an all important field goal to keep the Giants lead to only seven points, 24-17. Although I must say that it really had nothing to do with the Dallas defense on the third down play as Steve Smith clearly beat Scandrick (That’s a surprise!!!), but dropped the pass.

Ok, you would think the Cowboys are in good shape as they are only down by seven points with a lot of time left in the game. So they get the ball back and what happens? Yes, three and out as Barber gains three yards on first down, Romo get an intentional grounding penalty which results in a lost down. And on third and 17 they can only manage a short gain to Witten.

Punt formation!!!! Ok, punt the ball and let’s get the ball back with plenty of time left. Nope!!!! Not going to happen. Hixon gets the ball and after three missed tackles (well, I kind of stopped counting at that point and proceeded to destroy my living room), Hixon scores on a 79 punt return to put the Giants up 31-17.

Once again the Cowboys get the ball back and start driving. They get to the Giants 36 yard line where Williams is beyond wide open down the right sideline and what does Romo do? He misses him on what would have been a touchdown. And two plays later they fail on a fourth down attempt.

Yes, Romo once again drove the Cowboys down the field for a score at the end of game that was already over, but it was just too late at that point. The Cowboys once again just gave up too many big plays and were not able to respond when they needed too. So, December of 2009 is underway and the Cowboys are now 0-1. They have fallen to 8-4 and are tied with the Eagles for first place with the Giants now only one game back.

What is ahead for the Cowboys. Oh, not much. Just four teams playing at the top of their game. Yes, even the Redskins who lost today, but still played one hell of a game against the Saints. Here is the rest of the schedule for the Cowboys….

San Diego, 8-3

at New Orleans, 12-0

at Washington, 3-9 (record will not matter)

Philadelphia, 8-4

At this point I honestly do not know what will happen the rest of the season. The way I am feeling right now (frustrated), I can take a guess, but I would rather not because it just makes me sick to my stomach. I would say I’m speechless, but I just read my own post and I guess I’m anything but speechless.

Cowboys Fall to the Giants 31-24

Wade PhillipsDallas went to New York with high hopes and fell short, a touchdown short to be exact. Giants (7-5) walk away with the win and are only one “W” out of  first place. The Cowboys (8-4) now share the division lead with the Eagles. Never a dull moment in the NFC East.

Early on the Cowboys seemed to be controlling the game with a score of 10-0 up until the two minute warning. Then all of a sudden the Giants scored two touchdowns in less than two minutes right before halftime.

Tony Romo put up good numbers, but that just proves that stats don’t win games. Romo went 41/55, 392 yards, three touchdowns and ZERO interceptions. Romo’s 41 receptions set a new franchise record.

Roy Williams collected two touchdowns and had six receptions for 60 yards. Jason Witten came away with a career high 156 yards on 14 carries. While, Miles Austin had 10 receptions, 104 yards and one touchdown.

Romo and the receiving corps played great but those numbers mean nothing though when you lose to a division rival. And, it certainly didn’t help that the ground game never showed up. Between the three backs, Dallas only had 45 yards on the ground. All three lacked explosiveness and ran tentatively.

Nick Folk missed two field goals, and to be honest may not be a Cowboy for much longer. The Cowboys need a winner and Folk is definitely struggling lately. Many games come down to field goals and when you are in a run for the playoffs you need to be sure your kicker can make those shots.

On the defensive side of things, highlights include Jay Ratliff’s forced fumble and recover, Mike Jenkins’ interception and DeMarcus Ware had one sack. Other than that, mistakes, penalties and missed tackles were abundant.

This one is on the defense and special teams.

Jason Witten, who should have been celebrating a career best day and his 500th career catch said it best…

“We’ve got to challenge ourselves and find a way to play. We have to get back to it and forget all this December stuff. I’m not trying to avoid it or say it’s not true. We’ve got to put it away. You let another one slip and you’re really in trouble.”


Things we kept waiting for but never happened:

1. Massive Sack Attack from DeMarcus Ware and Anthony Spencer

2. Deep Passes to Miles Austin

3. The Three-Headed Monster to Wake Up

4. Urgency From the Cowboys

Fans prepare yourself, because its going to be a long week of hearing about the Cowboys record in December. The schedule doesn’t get any easier either. Coming up: Chargers, Saints, Redskins, Eagles.

I’m not saying that our season is over, I’m not saying we can’t still win the division. All I’m saying is it won’t be easy.

This loss pissed me off more than any of the others this season. Usually I get sad, but not necessarily mad. It’s passion-driven anger. It’s uncontrollable and I shouldn’t let it get the best of me. I apologize to anyone who I offended or attacked during or after this game.

Don’t worry, I will pull myself together. I’ll get over it and look forward to the next game. The team should do the same thing. I hope they take this loss personally and take it out on the next team in line.

The Tables Have Turned For The Cowboys And Giants

Honeymooners fans may remember when Ralph Kramden uttered the words,

“Be nice to the people you meet on the way up, because you meet the same people on the way down.”

As the New York Giants get ready to host the Dallas Cowboys later this afternoon, they may want to be mindful of what Wade Phillips said after after Eli Manning autographed our new stadium shortly after their 33-31 comeback win over the Cowboys.

“In this league, what goes around, comes around.”

Phillips was right. After the Giants 5-0 start they were riding high while the Cowboys continued to search for an identity and for a little respect.

Now, the writing is on the wall for the Giants. Not on the wall of their soon to be demolished stadium, but on their fate for the rest of the season. They are playing for their playoff lives and have fallen on hard times. They could have used an easy matchup to help turn their fortunes around, but instead they are now faced with the juggernaut that is the Dallas Cowboys. The Silver and Blue are rolling into New York ready to pave the street with the Giants on their highway to some post season glory. Time changes everything.

The Giants are yesterday’s news. Eli Manning has become ineffective and insignificant since he put his John Hancock on the hallowed grounds of Cowboys Stadium. He thought that his gesture would curse the Cowboys, but instead it became his and his team’s death knell.

After today’s game, the Giants’ season will in effect be over. The Cowboys on the other hand, will be focusing on getting ready for what is bound to be an exciting post season that offers them a chance at a sixth Super Bowl trophy.

The Giants did a lot of chirping and boasting one third into this season, but lately they spend most of their time pointing fingers at each other and playing the blame game. Last year Plaxico Burress may have shot himself in the leg, but this year it was Eli Manning who shot himself in the foot with his big mouth, and in the process he shot his teams playoff chance to bloody hell.

Ahhh… There’s nothing better than seeing a division rival implode before our very eyes.

Fantasy Report: Week #13 Picks

Week #13    Hot starts for this weekend

For most of us, this is the last game of the regular season because our playoffs start on week #14. I will try and put out a playoff sheet the next couple weeks to try and help figure out who is playing and who is going to be on the bench watching.


1)      M. Schaub – HOU

2)      T Brady – NE

3)      P. Manning – IND

4)      D. Brees – NO

5)      T. Romo – DALLAS COWBOYS BABY!


1)      M. Jones Drew – JAC

2)      C. Johnson – TEN

3)      A. Peterson – MIN

4)      S. Jackson – STL

5)      C. Benson – CIN


1)      B. Marshall – DEN

2)      R, Moss – NE

3)      A. Johnson – HOU

4)      L. Fitzgerald –ARZ

5)      C. Ochocinco – CIN


1)      D. Clark – IND

2)      V. Davis – SF

3)      J. Witten – DALLAS COWBOYS

4)      A. Gates – SD

5)      T. Gonzales – ATL

OK Guys! Another Thursday Day Game so make sure you get your lineups in by Wednesday Night or Thursday morning just in case…


BUF vs NYJ: Owens has had back to back good games since they put in Fitzpatrick, so I say start him. Lynch has lost a step and Jackson is handcuffed behind him, so below average matchup there. NYJ on the other hand, have a sweet running game and it’s a must start for Jones.


ARZ vs MIN: This should be a good game “IF” K. Warner can play. It is a must start on all players.

ATL vs PHI: Turner is hurt again and likely won’t play. So I see a rough day ahead for the Falcons running game and an above average day for the passing game. This is a great game for the Eagles so start all players.

BAL vs GB: This game is the beginning of the playoffs for both teams and looks to be a battle to the death. It is a below average Fantasy day for both teams, so be careful who you start here.

Car vs TB: Battle of the “Doormats” here. BUT there is fantasy points to be had. D. Williams should have a good day so feel free to start him. TB is a waste of time don’t start anybody unless you have to.

CHI vs STL: Both teams are struggling badly, but again there are points to be had here. S. Jackson is a must start. The Bears are due to get that feeble passing & running game going and this could be the week.

CIN vs DET: This is going to be a blowout fantasy game so make sure and get your Bengals in your lineups.

CLE vs SD: Cleveland players are a waste of time. Don’t start any of them. This will be another great game for the Chargers so a must start on all players involved.

DALLAS COWBOYS vs NYG: Mark my words the Cowboys will win this game! The Giants are the the team we are used to seeing. Their defense is a mess and their offense just can’t seem to get anything going. This is in “MY OPINION” a must start on all Cowboys players and be careful who you start on the Giants as the have another below average day ahead of them.

DEN vs KC: Denver should have an even better day than last week, so go ahead and start’em if you got‘em. Now on the Chiefs there is only one player I would consider starting and that is J. Charles.

HOU vs JAC: This should be another above average fantasy game with plenty of points to go around.

IND vs TEN: This is an above average game for Indy so feel free to start all players. The Titans have an average game but, because they are in a must win situation, I would go ahead and start them as well. Their playoff lives depend on this game.

MIA vs NE: Miami run game will get shut down by the Pats so bench R. Williams this week. Their passing game and all of NE players should have an above average day.

NO vs WAS: This is another big day for every Saint player! A must start on all players. Now Washington on the other hand is sinking fast and I would avoid all players except R. Cartright as he may score.

OAK vs PIT: Even though Oakland has looked better the last couple weekends, I still say avoid all players this weekend Pitt is just too strong. Go ahead and start your Pitt players since Roethlisberger should be back, then so will their offense.

SF vs SEA: Believe it or not this looks like it is going to be an above average fantasy day for both teams. Start all top players. J. Jones should be back from his bruised lung (OUCH) and Crabtree is starting to help A. Smith look like a real QB after all.

Good luck and my the Fantasy Gods bless your team.

– Gremlins

Two Fall From Cowboys Stadium Roof

Dallas Cowboys website and Yahoo Sports are reporting that two maintenance workers have fallen off the Cowboys Stadium roof.

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP)—Two maintenance workers who were not wearing safety harnesses fell from the roof area of towering Cowboys Stadium on Thursday morning, and at least one suffered serious injuries, authorities said.

The two were working on the top hatch of the retractable-roof venue around 7:20 a.m. when they slipped, Assistant Fire Chief Don Crowson said. They were not using “fall protection,” he said.

Both workers were transported to hospitals. Crowson said one man was severely injured but he had no details.

The National Weather Service said temperatures were near freezing at the time of the accident.

Keep these men in your prayers. Cowboys Stadium is one of the largest structures in the world, I can’t imagine why they weren’t wearing safety harnesses. I hope everyone comes out of this okay.

WhatIfSports NFL Preview: Cowboys at Giants

Game of the Week: Dallas 24 @ New York Giants 22

Miles AustinThe Dallas Cowboys could be playing for the NFC East. The New York Giants could be playing for their playoff lives. Or they could just find themselves in a bigger cluster with five weeks to go.

With two games and one team – the Philadelphia Eagles – separating the Giants and Cowboys in the NFC East standings, playoff lives and seedings are certainly in the picture this weekend at the Meadowlands where two teams that have been on very different paths will collide for the second time this season.

The first time these teams met in Week 2, the G-Men won a classic division rivalry game 33-31 thanks to a late, game-winning field goal from Lawrence Tynes. New York’s passing attack proved to be the difference as Eli Manning threw for more than 300 yards and two touchdowns while Dallas’ aerial assault provided just 127 yards with a touchdown and three interceptions from Tony Romo.

Might a passing attack – perhaps the opposite one – take control again this time?

Roy Williams Tony RomoThe Cowboys have put together one of the best offenses in the league, but it’s built on balance. Romo’s first game against the Giants was almost certainly his worst as he threw nearly half his interceptions on the season in that one game. He should go over the 3,000-yard mark in the second meeting with the Giants, especially if the Cowboys continue to maintain an average of 8.2 yards per pass attempt. But it’s the running game that often opens up the passing game. Dallas has a trio of running backs — Marion Barber, Felix Jones and Tashard Choice – who together help the Cowboys average more than five yards per carry.

But can the Cowboys stop Manning and the Giants this time around? Dallas’ defense, especially in stopping the pass, leaves a bit to be desired in terms of yards per game, but it’s taking teams a lot of passes to get to that point. Dallas is giving up just 6.7 yards per attempt, but is forcing teams into the passing game by stopping the run just as well. Opponents are averaging just 4.2 yards per carry and are averaging less than two touchdowns per game this season. Surprisingly, despite numbers like that, the Cowboys are still -3 in the turnover department and may need a key takeaway or two to stop Manning.

The Giants also look for a balanced offensive attack that hangs right around the top 10 in most statistical categories. Manning, battling through foot injury, has actually been more inconsistent than his counterpart though Romo seems to take more heat. The Giants average 7.6 yards per pass attempt but Manning failed to find the end zone in a game for the first time this season last Thursday in a loss to the Denver Broncos. But it’s New York’s running game that has been the true disappointment. Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs were supposed to be a two-headed monster, but have been scary in other reasons as neither of them averages above 4.8 yards per carry for a ground game that averaged just 4.3 yards per touch. And now, with Bradshaw out, the Giants are relying on Danny Ware.

Keith BrookingWhile the Cowboys enjoy a +10 margin in terms of touchdowns, the Giants actually have a deficit when it comes to finding the end zone. Their defense had a hot start to the season, but has since slowed and fewer units have been more scrutinized than New York’s secondary, specifically its safeties. Yet after all that, the Giants actually boast one of the NFL’s top passing offenses when it comes to yards per game and they yield less than seven yards per pass attempt. And on the ground, they might even be better as they yield just 4.2 yards per carry.

With a two-point scoring margin in the first meeting this season, it’s easy to see why we could be in for another barn-burner this time around. Vegas has set the line at one-point with host New York being the favorite, but in 10,001 simulations, it’s Romo and the Cowboys that prevail 62.6% of the time by less than a field goal. With the total set at 45, the teams make the over better than 53% of the time.

In the end, it’s actually not either passing attack that makes the difference, it’s Dallas’ three-headed monster at running back taking care of New York’s less-than-fearsome twosome. The Cowboys rush for just 24 more yards on average, but average nearly a full yard more per carry. And while Dallas hadn’t found a consistent receiving threat at the time of the teams’ first meeting, Miles Austin has stepped up to be that guy as the Cowboys look to solidify their playoff chances.

Each Tuesday morning, WhatIfSports will preview every NFL game of the upcoming week. All of our NFL content, including our most recent power rankings are located here. The inputs to the 10,001 simulations of each upcoming game are based on a rigorous analysis of each team that considers strength-of-schedule-adjusted team and player ratings and then makes modifications for injuries and depth at each position. Check out WhatIfSports for the rest of the NFL picks for Week 13.