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Weekly Game Balls: Week 8

The Cowboys are on a nice three game winning streak, everyone is healthy and all is well this week in the Big D. Sunday the Cowboys face one of their toughest divisional rivals when they travel to Philadelphia to take on the Eagles.

For now let’s focus on the positive that we can take out of last Sunday’s matchup against the battered and bruised Seahawks.

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Tony Romo.

Tony Romo finished the day 21 for 36 with 256 yards and three touchdowns. He hit three different receivers – Williams, Hurd and Austin.

Romo has gone three straight games without an interception, a career best. He is also learning to spread the ball around to whoever is open. He threw the ball to ten different receivers in the Seattle game.

The schedule is about to get tougher through November and December. If Romo can build from these past three games and stay on track, there’s no reason to doubt that he has what it takes to go up against top teams in the league.

Romo is also up for the NFL’s FedEx Player of the Week for the third time this year.

Great work this week Romo!

Star50

This week’s defensive/special teams game ball goes to Patrick Crayton.

I know what you’re thinking, Patrick Crayton is a wide receiver. However, he is also our punt returner, and damn good one too.

Patrick Crayton has had a punt return for a touchdown in each of the last two games.

Cowboys had signed return specialist Allen Rossum, however he injured himself in his debut with the team, so Crayton went back to his punt return role.

The amazing thing is Crayton was demoted from his WR starting position with the promotion of Miles Austin and since then has excelled on special teams with his two TDs.

Crayton also has the chance to make NFL history if he gets the chance to return a punt for a TD in Philly this weekend. No NFL player has ever returned for touchdowns in three consecutive games. It won’t be an easy task, and surely the Eagles are aware of the chance for a Cowboy to make history at their home.

Good luck Crayton, we will be cheering you on!

Star50

Congratulations to Romo and Crayton for their great contribution to the victory.

Honorable Mention: Keith Brooking continues to impress, he had 8 tackles, 3 assists and a sack.

FORWARD PROGRESS: Street Fights and Sensabaugh

Forward Progress

One more week…..one more week until we get a small taste of Cowboys football. A week from tonight I will be retreating to a quiet, fortified place, setting the phone to silent and cranking the volume up to 11 and watching the Cowboys and the Raiders. I am not expecting to see too much or many plays from any of the regulars, but I don’t care. It’s still the blue stars on the silver helmet and I want a win! More on that next week……

I was listening to some training camp coverage on the radio this morning as I was driving into work and they were discussing the small training camp fight that broke out between Marc Columbo and Jay Ratliff. It’s not a big deal at all, these things happen all the time, but what had my interest is the question that was posed: Who would be the one Cowboy you would want with you if you got jumped by 5 guys in a dark alley? I mean, many of them could do plenty of damage, but here is my top 5:

1. Marc Columbo – Just big and mean and has the fighter’s mentality.
2. Leonard Davis – Just BIG and BIG.
3. Jay Ratliff – He has the quickness and the toughness.
4. Marion Barber – He will fight to the death.
5. Gerald Sensabaugh – He will probably be packing an AK-47, so that helps!

Okay, sorry Gerald. That was a low-blow. Speaking of Mr. Sensabaugh, I wanted to do a little research on the new projected starter at safety and I was surprised to find many good to above average stats, combine performances and on-field accomplishments, even dating back to his college days at East Tennessee St and North Carolina. He transferred to UNC his senior year only because East Tennessee disbanded it’s football program.

In his only season playing Division 1-A football, he had 4 interceptions and returned three of them for touchdowns and also tied an NCAA single-game record by blocking 3 punts in a game. After his senior year, he was invited to the NFL combine where he recorded a 46 inch vertical jump, the highest for any NFL player on record. He was a 5th round pick and then started every game his rookie year and over the last 2 seasons he started around 70 percent of the Jaguars’ games, recording 4 interceptions just last year and also played a large role on special teams.

However, he was allowed to walk and become a free agent and was also signed to a one year deal for very little money. With his performance and youth, It really makes me wonder what the behind the scenes chatter on this guy is and why he wasn’t more sought after. He is not a celebrity bad boy NFL player like Vick or Plaxico, but he has had his share of run-in’s with the law. I read in the Fort-Worth Star Telegram that he has been participating in the one-on-one secondary drills normally reserved for the corners and nickelbacks and has been holding his own against the receivers. It was also noted that former safety Roy Williams would never participate in these drills. I know that Roy played strong safety his last few years, but still. I really think Sensabaugh can improve this defense and I hope that he can keep his head straight and earn a nice, long term deal that a dominant season will earn him.

We are starting to see big contract extensions around the league for established players, as this is the time when teams can sit down and negotiate and arrange all of the salary cap issues and the pro-rating of money as it is a new contract year. Eli Manning just became the highest paid quarterback in the NFL yesterday. I don’t understand that move, but that is another story all together. The main thing I am concerned about is DeMarcus Ware sitting back and watching these extensions to Manning and James Harrison and wondering when his is coming. Ware is too much of a stand up person to go to the media and whine, but isn’t that just one more reason to give him his deal? I can’t make this clear enough: Jerry, show D-WARE the money!

Anyways, things are still sort of slow as we creep towards the season, and that is a good thing really. Big news out of training camp is usually only bad news, so we should just sit back and relax and look forward to our first pre-season game, a week from tonight. Oh, and just a reminder, don’t call me during the game, I won’t answer.

Cowboys Fan For Life – TD

Gerald Sensabaugh: The Jolly Jumper

Gerald Sensabaugh was born on June 13, 1983 in Oakland,California but was raised in Kingsport, Tennessee. Where he attended Dobyns-Bennett High School where he was a standout in football and track. In football, he helped lead his team to two consecutive Class 5A Semifinals, and during his senior year he also played offense recording 42 receptions for 420 yards and 7 touchdowns and was an All-Big Nine Selection. In track he won a state championship in the long jump.

Gerald started his college career at East Tennessee State University but transferred to the University of North Carolina as a senior when ETSU disbanned their football program. He finished his one-year UNC career with four interceptions, five fumble recoveries and three touchdowns. He also tied an NCAA single-game record after blocking three punts in one game.

Gerald recorded a 46″ vertical at the NFL Combine, the highest for an NFL player on record(this is also why I here-by give him the nickname The Jolly Jumper). He was selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the fifth round(157th overall) of the 2005 NFL Draft.

Gerald started every game of his rookie season, one of few to do so. After perfoming well on special teams he got a chance to start the remainder of the season at Strong Safety when Pro-Bowler Donovin Darius got injured. In 2006 he continued to play well on special teams and, then halfway through the season, he yet again became a starter when Darius suffered a season ending knee injury. On March 10,2009 the Dallas Cowboys and Gerald Sensabaugh agreed to terms on a one-year contract after he had the best season of his career in 2008 recording 70 tackles 8 pass deflections and 4 interceptions.

Gerald has been invited to be a teacher almost every year at Jason Wittens football camp, which is held in Jasons home town of Elizabethon, Tennessee just a mere 30 minutes from Geralds hometown of Kingsport, Tennessee.

Gerald has had three arrest since 2007. The first being for doing a wheelie on his bike. The second for having a gun with an expired permit in his possesion. The third for driving on a suspended license.

Officer Apologizes To Texans RB Ryan Moats and Family

Well I was wondering when this officer would man up and do this and thank go it finally happened as reported by nfl.com.

A Dallas police officer who drew his gun after pulling over an NFL player rushing to a hospital to see his dying mother-in-law apologized Friday for his actions.

The statement from officer Robert Powell was released through his attorneys and referred to his March 18 traffic stop of Houston Texans running back Ryan Moats in a hospital parking lot.

“I wish to publicly and sincerely apologize to the Moats family, my colleagues in the Dallas Police Department and to all those who have been rightfully angered by my actions,” Powell said in the statement. “After stopping Mr. Moats’ vehicle, I showed poor judgment and insensitivity to Mr. Moats and his family by my words and actions.”

In the statement, Powell also said he has attempted to reach Moats but without success.

“Again, I am very sorry for what I did and ask for the forgiveness of all those touched by these unfortunate events,” Powell said.

Powell, a three-year veteran of the Dallas Police Department, was placed on paid administrative leave Thursday pending results of an internal investigation into the incident. Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle said he was “embarrassed” and “disappointed” after viewing video taken by a dashboard camera inside the officer’s vehicle.

Powell stopped Moats outside Baylor Regional Medical Center in the Dallas suburb of Plano after Moats rolled his sport-utility vehicle through a red light. By the time Moats received a ticket and a lecture from Powell, the player’s mother-in-law had died.

“I can screw you over,” Powell, 25, said at one point in the videotaped incident. When another officer came with word that Moats’ mother-in-law was indeed dying, Powell’s response was: “All right. I’m almost done.”

Police officials said Powell told his commanders he believed he was doing his job and that he drew his gun but didn’t point it. Kunkle said Powell wasn’t necessarily acting improperly when he pulled out his weapon, but that once he realized what was happening he should have put the gun back, apologized and offered to help the family in any way.

“His behavior, in my opinion, did not exhibit the common sense, the discretion, the compassion that we expect our officers to exhibit,” Kunkle said.

Moats’ wife, who was in the car along with other relatives, said Powell pointed his weapon at her.

“He was pointing a gun at me as soon as I got out of the car,” Tamishia Moats told The Dallas Morning News.

Ryan Moats told KRLD-FM in Dallas in a phone interview Thursday that after the officer pointed the gun at his wife, he pointed it at him.

“I just tried to stay as still as possible to not scare him or do anything to make him react,” he said.

Moats earlier told the newspaper he believed Powell should be fired but backed off that statement in his radio interview.

“All I know is what he did was wrong,” Moats said. “He stole a moment away from me that I can never get back. I’m really not the judge on what should happen to him.”

Video from a dashboard camera inside the officer’s vehicle, obtained by Dallas-Fort Worth station WFAA-TV, revealed an intense exchange in which the officer threatened to jail Moats.

Powell ordered Tamishia Moats, 27, to get back in the SUV, but after pausing for a few seconds, she and another woman rushed into the hospital. She was by the side of her mother, 45-year-old Jonetta Collinsworth, when she died a short time later from breast cancer.

“Get in there,” said Powell, yelling at Tamishia Moats as she exited the vehicle. “Let me see your hands!”

“Excuse me, my mom is dying,” Tamishia Moats said. “Do you understand?”

Ryan Moats explained that he waited until there was no traffic before proceeding through the red light. When Powell asked for proof of insurance, Moats grew more agitated and told the officer to go find it.

“My mother-in-law is dying! Right now! You’re wasting my time!” Moats yelled. “I don’t understand why you can’t understand that.”

As they argued, the officer grew irritated.

“Shut your mouth,” the officer said. “You can either settle down and cooperate or I can just take you to jail for running a red light.”

By the time Moats, 26, received a ticket and a lecture from Powell, about 13 minutes had passed. When Moats and Collinsworth’s father entered the hospital, they learned Collinsworth was dead.

Earl Jackson, Collinsworth’s father, said he knew what Powell was doing was wrong.

“This guy, he wouldn’t listen to nobody,” Jackson said in an interview with Dallas-Fort Worth station KDFW-TV.

Moats said he wouldn’t have had a problem with the officer giving him a ticket after letting him go into the hospital.

“I don’t know what he was thinking,” he told KRLD-FM. “Basically, I was just shocked. I was very shocked that he wasn’t budging on it. I even said I can’t believe that this was happening.”

Kunkle said the video showed that Moats and his wife “exercised extraordinary patience, restraint in dealing with the behavior of our officer.”

“At no time did Mr. Moats identify himself as an NFL football player or expect any kind of special consideration,” Kunkle said. “He handled himself very, very well.”

The Moats family, who are black, said they can’t help but think that race might have played a part in the white officer’s behavior.

When the exchange was at its most contentious, Powell said he could tow Moats’ SUV if he didn’t have insurance and that he could arrest him for fleeing because he didn’t immediately stop when Powell turned on his sirens. The pursuit lasted a little more than a minute.

“I can screw you over,” Powell said. “I’d rather not do that. Your attitude will dictate everything that happens.”

The ticket issued to Moats was dismissed, Dallas police spokesman Lt. Andy Harvey said.

Moats, a third-round draft choice of the Philadelphia Eagles in 2005 out of Louisiana Tech, was cut by the team in August and later signed with the Texans. In three seasons as a backup, he has rushed for 441 yards and scored four touchdowns.

Moats was a standout at Bishop Lynch High School, a private school in Dallas, rushing for more than 2,600 yards and 33 touchdowns as a senior.

 

Police Officer Prevents Texans RB Moats From Seeing Dying Mother-In-Law

What is this world coming to when a person can’t even explain to a police officer that their mother-in-law is dying and they need to see her right away and they are right in the parking lot of the hospital.

A police officer pulled over Houston Texans running back Ryan Moats as he was hurrying to see his dying mother-in-law, drawing his gun, threatening the NFL player and holding him in the hospital parking lot as she died, officials said Thursday.

Dallas police spokesman Lt. Andy Harvey said Officer Robert Powell told his commanders that he drew his gun but did not point it. Drawing a gun is not unusual in traffic stops where officers feel threatened, Harvey said.

But Moats’ wife, who was in the car along with other relatives, said Powell pointed his weapon at her.

“He was pointing a gun at me as soon as I got out of the car,” Tamishia Moats told The Dallas Morning News, which first reported that Powell unholstered his sidearm.

The Moats family did not immediately return messages left by The Associated Press.

The Texans released a breif statement Thursday morning, saying “Our thoughts and prayers are with Ryan and his family during this difficult time.”

Powell, who has been reassigned to desk duty, stopped Moats’ SUV outside Baylor Regional Medical Center during the early hours of March 18 after Moats rolled through a red light. Moats and his family had gotten a call saying his mother-in-law was dying.

Video from a dashboard camera inside the officer’s vehicle, obtained by Dallas-Fort Worth station WFAA-TV, revealed an intense exchange in which the officer threatened to jail Moats.

He ordered Tamishia Moats to get back in the SUV, but after pausing for a few seconds, she and another woman rushed into the hospital. She was by the side of her mother, 45-year-old Jonetta Collinsworth, when she died a short time later. Collinsworth had breast cancer.

“Get in there,” said Powell, yelling at 27-year-old Tamishia Moats, as she exited the car. “Let me see your hands!”

“Excuse me, my mom is dying,” Tamishia Moats said. “Do you understand?”

Ryan Moats explained that he waited until there was no traffic before proceeding through the red light. When Powell asked for proof of insurance, Moats grew more agitated and told the officer to go find it.

“My mother-in-law is dying! Right now! You’re wasting my time!” Moats yelled. “I don’t understand why you can’t understand that.”

As they argued, the officer got irritated. “Shut your mouth,” the officer, 25, said. “You can either settle down and cooperate or I can just take you to jail for running a red light.”

By the time the 26-year-old NFL player received a ticket and a lecture from Powell, about 13 minutes had passed.

When he and Collinsworth’s father entered the hospital, they learned Collinsworth was dead, the Dallas newspaper reported.

“I really felt bad for them because I know they were just in tears,” Jordan Woy, Moats’ agent, told The Associated Press. “Not only were they really sad about (Moats) … not getting a chance to see the mother-in-law, but you get shaken up when you’re in that sort of situation.”

The Moats family, who are black, said they can’t help but think that race might have played a part in how Powell, who is white, treated them.

“I think he should lose his job,” Ryan Moats said.

When the exchange was at its most contentious, Powell said he could tow Moats’ SUV if he didn’t have insurance and that he could arrest him for fleeing because he didn’t immediately stop when Powell turned on his sirens. The pursuit lasted a little more than a minute.

“I can screw you over,” Powell said. “I’d rather not do that. Your attitude will dictate everything that happens, and right now your attitude sucks.”

The exchange soon ended and Powell returned to his cruiser to write a ticket. A few minutes later, another officer approached Powell to tell him a nurse said the mother-in-law was dying right then and Moats needed to get into the hospital.

“All right. I’m almost done,” Powell said in response.

Powell was placed on dispatch duty pending an investigation. The ticket issued to Moats was dismissed, Harvey said.

“There were some things that were said that were disturbing, to say the least,” Harvey said.

Powell told police officials he believed he was doing his job, said Dallas Police Assistant Chief Floyd Simpson.

Moats, a third-round choice of the Philadelphia Eagles in 2005 out of Louisiana Tech, was cut by the Eagles in August and later signed with the Texans. In three seasons as a backup, he’s rushed for 441 yards and scoured four touchdowns.

He was a standout at Bishop Lynch High School, a private school in Dallas, rushing for more than 2,600 yards and 33 touchdowns as a senior.

Tell me what you think of this officers lack of a heart to care about a family not getting to see their wife/mother/mother-in-law pass away.

The Thin Line Between Love and Hate

As a daily reader of this fine blog and a fan of all who contribute in any way, shape or form, I have been pondering a few general thoughts based on some of the comments that I have read on many of the recent posts. Whether I will be able to accurately articulate my exact thoughts, remains to be seen…..but here it goes:

 

THUG LIFE

Quick question…..How many active Dallas Cowboys have been arrested and charged or convicted of a crime in the last 3 years, or even 5 years?? I am talking about players getting in trouble WHILE on the Cowboys roster. This is not a trick question, because I personally can’t think of any. Please feel free to enlighten me. There seems to be some type of conspiracy theory about the team and it’s “troublemakers”, and I am sure it is ALL because we signed Pac Man, or maybe it’s because Michael Irvin got in trouble 12 years ago. To me, it doesn’t really make alot of sense. 

I read and hear many people say we don’t need any players unless they have a perfect history or have never had any scrapes with the law, and I have to ask WHY? These men are not our political leaders, our school teachers or any type of religous leaders. They are football players. The main qualifications for the job are to be really strong and really fast.

Don’t get me wrong, the laws and rules of society should be applied to all in sports and life and yes, they are role models to kids, and yes, maybe it is hard for me and you to understand why some profesional athletes make the decisions they do, but they are not perfect, and very human. In my opinion, if a player or players make mistakes, they should pay for their crimes within the court system and then within the NFL player conduct system, but after that should we ban them for life? Should they never be given a second or even a third chance??

If you say that, No, they do not deserve other chances, then I would ask you Why? Is it because you and I do not make the millions or drive the cars, is it jealousy? Or is it an even darker issue at hand? Just something to ponder. And as far as the Cowboys go, last I checked we had a majority of our roster made up of very good guys, from Witten to Demarcus, and even all of the young guys like Deon Anderson (who without a second chance in college would not be in the NFL right now) and Sam Hurd. I just don’t understand why the Cowboys get slapped with the generic “made of bad guys, with no character” tag so often. We are definitely not the Cincinatti Bengals.

 

THE T.O. SHOW

It’s been cancelled. It’s over. He is gone. It really doesn’t matter anymore if you and I agree with it, like it, dislike it, can’t decide about it; because it’s done. Time to move forward. I hate to even bring this up, because of all the over-sensitive T.O. fans out there, but at the end of the day, he was a great player for us for 3 seasons, and great personality who provided alot of entertainment and, in my opinion, actually a good guy who got a pretty bad rap from the media and the average fan-on-the-street, but NOT a Cowboys legend by any stretch of the imagination. He will not be in the Ring of Honor, there will be no statues of him at the new stadium and no freeways named in his honor. He does rank up at the top of the NFL all-time recieving records, but he did most of his damage with the San Francisco 49ers. Did you hear that?? The 49ers! One of our all-time arch rivals! So, one last time….Goodbye T.O., thanks for the memories.

 

HALF GLASS EMPTY

This last thought is probably the most delicate, because I normally like to deal in facts, instead of “faith” or opinion….but, to me, there is just way too much negativity among the Cowboys nation! It is hard, due to the terrible end of the season last year culminating in the train wreck that was the Philly game, but where is the faith? The support? The optimism?

I am glad I live here in the metroplex and am able to follow the team in the local media, because sometimes it seems that some people are trying to convince me that we don’t have any able-bodied football players on this team, and we have a “general manager” that doesn’t even know how many yards long a football field is (it’s 100, Jerry). We went 9-7, and missed the playoffs, a very dissapointing season, yes, who can even begin to argue that but this is not Detroit or Oakland, and this is not even Green Bay or Denver.

We have a nucleus of players in place, on both offense and defense, that rank right at the top of the NFL. Do we have every little nickelback or 3rd receiver position covered perfectly and ideally? Well, no, but name me a team that does? The great and even quality players in the NFL don’t just grow on trees, unfortunately.

I will put my faith and my support behind Romo, Witten, Barber, Ware, Ratliff, Newman and the rest, and hope that we get a few breaks that all teams need and get to where we all want to go, to the Superbowl. It’s not going to be easy this year, next year or any year ever, but that’s football, that’s sport, that’s competition.

So, there you have it. Just a few random thoughts from TD….. you can love me or hate me, agree or disagree, that’s what it’s all about here! All I know is that it is a thin line, a razor thin line, between LOVE and HATE. Which side of the line are you on??
 

Cowboys Fan For LIFE – TD

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New York Giant Receivers = Gun Magnets?

Once again I had to  travel no further than the NFL website for my article. So let me shoot straight here i think that the Giants receivers are gun magnets. 1. Steve Smith robbed at gun point, 2. Plaxico Burress shot himself, and now the most recent Taye Biddle(read article).

New York Giants receiver Taye Biddle is recovering from gunshot wounds to his hand and leg after being shot while visiting family in his hometown.

Decatur police said in a statement Thursday that Biddle was shot outside a residence and was treated and released from a hospital. Police said there was no evidence Biddle caused or provoked the shooting.

“He had surgery on his hand today,” Biddle’s friend, Bruce Jones, told The Decatur Daily Thursday. “He told me his leg is OK, and he ought to be fine.”

The 25-year-old Biddle grew up in Decatur and played college football at the University of Mississippi.

Police have not made any arrests in the case.

Biddle was promoted from the Giants’ practice squad after receiver Plaxico Burress was suspended for a game in September.

After this I cant help but wonder why are all their receivers dealing with guns going against them here lately. My hopes and prayers go out to Taye Biddle for a speedy recovery even though I hate the Giants with all my heart. I also pray that all this non-sense with guns should end sometime soon how many people are going to have to get hurt and killed for this to sink in to people. The NFL has already lost one great player in Sean Taylor due to some stupid people with a gun breaking into house. So with that I will end this entry with my prayers going out to every NFL player along with every person in  the world and to our new President Barrack Obama and may he be safe throughout his term and for the rest of his life.

No Country For Old Men…With Bad Knees

I think everyone would agree that getting old sucks. I turned 40 on Monday so I know first-hand the magnitude in which it can suck! But on the bright side, the older you get the more memories you have. I have tons.

For instance, watching The Doomsday Defense dismantle the Denver Broncos and former Cowboy Craig Morton in Super Bowl XII. Then after the game I watched as Harvey Martin crushed an "Orange Crush" pop can during the locker room celebration.

Then there are not so fond memories like Super Bowl XIII against The Steelers. The horrible pass interference call against Benny Barnes when his feet got tangled with Lynn Swann’s which led to a Steelers score. And of course Jackie Smith. The drop. Dallas should have been the first team to win 3 Super Bowls. WE WERE ROBBED!!

Of course there was "The Catch". Montana to Clark in the NFC Championship. Should be called "The Lucky Catch". I also remember "The Fumble" by Danny White, deep in 49er territory on the ensuing drive.

And I could write a 10,000 word essay with one hand tied behind my back about the greatest dynasty in NFL history. Who might that be you ask? The 90’s Cowboys of course. This team could have and SHOULD have won at LEAST 4 in a row.

But this blog isn’t as much about my memories as it is about what it must be like to be an NFL player in the twilight of your career. Specifically Terry Glenn. Glenn’s career has had its ups and downs. He’s only played a full 16 weeks in 3 of the 12 seasons he’s been in the league so far. With 2 of those being for The Cowboys.

I think Glenn is a great player. Very professional. Super hands. Bad wheels. He’s struggled with injuries throughout his career and now time is not on his side. This will be his 13th season if he even plays at all. I personally think he should sign the $500,000 injury settlement. This way everyone is covered. Seriously, Jerry Jones could just cut the guy and he’d get nothing. He can’t pass a freakin physical and Jones is offering him 500 G’s! Not quite as sweet as the deal Glenn got last year. $5 million for 4 plays.

I feel for Terry Glenn. To a point. But he’s almost 34 with a huge bank account and he’s had the honor of playing for the greatest sports franchise on the planet. But he has bad knees. I’m 40 living paycheck to paycheck and I drive a truck for a living. And I also have bad knees.

Terry, you have my sympathies…

Legends of the Star – Larry Allen

Larry Allen first gained national attention when he led little known, Sonoma State to the Senior Bowl in 1992. The two time All-American starred while playing guard, and in two seasons he only allowed one sack. He set ten different team records that still stand today.
 
In 1994, Larry Allen was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2nd round of the NFL Draft, making him the first NFL player ever to be selected from Sonoma State. He made an immediate impact on the team and was soon considered to be the NFL’s premier offensive lineman. He is widely recognized as the one of the best offensive lineman in NFL history and is certainly the best offensive lineman the Dallas Cowboys have ever had. He was the biggest part of an offensive unit that has posted the four lowest sacks allowed totals in club history with 18 in 1995, 19 in 1996 and 1998, and 20 in 1994.
 
Allen is widely credited for the success of Emmitt Smith with his unparalleled play as his lead blocker, and played a role in eight of his eleven 1,000 yard rushing seasons. Allen, was also able to bench press 700 pounds, and is considered to be the strongest man to ever play professional football.
 
In his 12 year career, Larry Allen was selected to 11 Pro Bowls and is just the third player in NFL history to be selected to the Pro Bowl at more than one offensive line position during his career. Only Bob Lilly had more Pro Bowl selections than Larry Allen. He is the most decorated offensive lineman in Dallas Cowboys history.

 

 

Legends of the Star is an exclusive weekly feature found only on StarStruck. Each week we will profile one of the many interesting personalities that have played for the Dallas Cowboys. 

Legends of the Star – Deion Sanders

Deion Sanders was and still is one of the most colorful and most polarizing players in sports. He started out his career in 1988 when he was drafted by New York Yankees. He was then drafted the following year by the Atlanta Falcons with the fifth overall pick in the 1989 NFL Draft. He showed up wearing thousands of dollars of diamonds and gold including a flashy silk shirt embroidered with the words "Prime Time." The name stuck with him.
 
Sanders had a very successful baseball career and went on to have an even better football career. He became a rare two sport star who made headlines with his play as well as his very controversial comments. He was loved and hated by millions of fans across the country.
 
For his first five seasons in the NFL, Deion Sanders played for the Atlanta Falcons and was the best cornerback in the league and one of the best return specialists in NFL history. He was as dynamic a player as there ever was in the game. He then signed a one-year deal with San Francisco, and became the NFL Defensive Player of the Year. His four tackles and interception helped the 49ers beat San Diego 49-26 in Super Bowl XXIX.
 
Soon after that, in 1995, Sanders signed a huge contract to play with the Dallas Cowboys. He was to get a $13 million dollar signing bonus, but because Jerry Jones was superstitious, he received $12,999,999.99, a penny less.His presence at cornerback helped Dallas win the Super Bowl that season. In that game, he became the only player in NFL history to catch a pass and make an interception in the Super Bowl. In 1996, Sanders started all 16 games at cornerback and eight at wide receiver to become the first two-way NFL player in 34 years. But make no mistake, with eight Pro Bowl selections as a cornerback, defense is where Sanders really shined.
 
During his 14-year NFL career, Deion Sanders was a perennial All-Pro and one of the most feared pass defenders to ever play the game. He is the only player to have appeared in a Super Bowl and a World Series.

 

 

Legends of the Star is an exclusive weekly feature found only on StarStruck. Each week we will profile one of the many interesting personalities that have played for the Dallas Cowboys. 

Legends of the Star – Bill Bates

Bill Bates started his career while playing as a safety for the University of Tennessee. While he was there he was named second-team All-Southeastern Conference his junior and senior seasons, and developed a reputation as the team’s hardest hitter and quickest tackler.
 
Bill Bates was much smaller than other safeties in the league and for that reason he was not drafted in the NFL Draft. However, the Cowboys were impressed with his sheer determination and heart that he displayed in college and decided to sign him as an undrafted player in 1983. Bill immediately became a visible figure on the field with his ferocious special teams play. It was due to his amazing seaon as a fierce special teams player that the NFL changed the rules and added a spot on the Pro-Bowl team for special teams coverage player. In 1984, he became the first NFL player to be honored.
 
Bill was an inspirational leader both on and off the field, and in 1990 Head Coach Jimmy Johnson named him the Cowboy’s Special Team’s captain. He held that position for the duration of his career with Dallas Cowboys, a career that spanned from 1983-1996.
 
Bill was a big part of the 1992, 1993 and 1995 Super Bowl Champions team, and has been a long time favorite of Cowboys fans. While playing linebacker, his last minute interception at Chicago’s Soldier Field preserved Dallas’ 17 – 13 win in the team’s triumphant return to the playoffs after a six year absence, and will surely go down as one of the big plays in the rebuilding of the Dallas Cowboys.
 
Bill was selected to the All-Madden Team for twelve years in a row, and was named the winner of the Bob Lilly Award four years in a row, from 1990 – 1994. This award is selected by a vote of the fans and annually goes to the Cowboy player who displays leadership and character on and off the field. He is a true Legend of the Star.
 
Legends of the Star is an exclusive weekly feature found only on StarStruck. Each week we will profile one of the many interesting personalities that have played for the Dallas Cowboys.