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.

Weekly Game Balls: Week 12

Some say we shouldn’t celebrate the Cowboys winning ways just yet. Some people think its too soon to start playing playoff parties. Personally, I don’t really care. I am proud of the Cowboys and despite their past December history, I believe we are headed to the playoffs. Their destiny lies in their own hands, and here are a couple of guys who helped earn the victory this past week.

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Miles Austin.

Austin is currently leading the team in touchdowns and receiving yards. His 824 receiving yards puts him 13th in the league. He is well on his way to a 1000+ yard season.

On Thanksgiving, Miles totaled 145 yards on 7 receptions and one touchdown.

Lets hope he can keep it up through the rough month of December!

Go “Smiles”!


This week’s defensive/special teams game ball goes to Anthony Spencer.

Spencer has come very close to getting a game ball several times already this season, but his outstanding performance on Thanksgiving day left him standing tall above the rest.

Spencer had 6 tackles, 2 assists and 2 sacks. The Raiders game plan had them double-teaming DeMarcus Ware leaving Spencer room to roam and attack.

Keep on sackin’ Spencer!


Way to go to Austin and Spencer!

Honorable Mention: Jason Witten (5 receptions, 107 yards), Felix Jones (7 carries, 68 yards, 1 TD), Keith Brooking (6 tackles, 3 assists)

Weekly Game Balls: Week 11

For the most part it was one ugly game. But there were some worthy contributions that stood out among the disgust that most of us felt until the last drive of the game. With that said I present you the game balls of week 11.

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Marion Barber.

All week we heard about Jerry Jones wanting to give Felix Jones more carries. However, it was Marion Barber who delivered. It was almost as if he had something to prove.

Barber rushed 20 times for 99 yards in addition had one reception for 8 yards.

We enjoyed seeing the beast come out in you MB3, keep up the good work!


This week’s defensive/special teams game ball goes to Keith Brooking.

Keith Brooking has been simply amazing. Week in and week out he is out there on the field giving 110%. You can even spot him on the sidelines giving pep talks and cheering on his teammates. Oh where have you been all our football lives Keith?

Brooking finished the day with four tackles, four assists and a sack.

Keep leading the way Keith!


Way to go to Marion and Keith!

Honorable Mention: Patrick Crayton’s winning touchdown.

Chemistry Is A Great Thing

Unfortunately, I have not been able to get to my blog this week until now. But I feel with the win we had last week, I have to write something. I am on cloud 9 right now. Our Dallas Cowboys are finally looking like they care. Like they know they have the pieces in place to win a championship. Yes, you and I have all known this for a few years now, but I really believe it is starting to sink in to them. With that said, what a great game it was last Sunday.

Once again Tony Romo had a great performance going 21/34 for 307 yards 1 touchdown and 1 interception. Even with all the talk about Roy Williams and how his chemistry with Romo was not there yet, in my opinion he had his best game yet catching 5 passes for 75 total yards. Patrick Crayton stepped up and had 2 receptions for 74 yards. Jason Whitten had the biggest catch of the game in the fourth quarter with 2 minutes to go giving Dallas a first down and solidifying the win, but finishing the day with 7 catches for 43 yards. Miles Austin once again made a strong statement as to who the real number one receiver is by catching only one pass but taking it 49 yards for what turned out to be a game winning touchdown. Ogletree, Barber and Choice all combined for a total of 6 catches for 66 total yards. Once again proving that the chemistry is not only there with Roy; but with the whole team.

We did not have our best running game with only 23 rushes for a total of 76 yards and one touchdown (by Tashard Choice)  averaging only 3.3 yards per carry and 2 tackles lost for 5 yards. Our 3rd down efficiency was not our best but not our worst going 7/15 at 46%. We finished the day with 61 total plays (including the 4 sacks for 25 yards) averaging 5.9 yards per play for a total of 358 net yards. In my opinion, an all in all a good performance.


Once again our defense stepped up and had an outstanding performance. I wrote an article a few weeks back about our defense and the plan that our head coach Wade Phillips had for them and how he would give his expert opinion on things that needed to be done to improve the defense. Well, it turns out that Wade Phillips might actually know a thing or 2 about defense in the NFL. Although Demarcus Ware did not get a sack in this game, his presence alone made the Eagles think twice about what they wanted to do. He had 3 tackles and assisted on another. Jay Ratliff lead the team with 2 sacks and 5 tackles while Victor Butler had a sack and tackle himself.

Everyone talked about last season how our corners and safety’s always got beat deep and if anyone wanted to beat the Cowboys just go deep. Well our secondary has proven to everyone, THAT IS NOT TRUE!!!!!!! Terence Newman was once again a shut down CB that had a total of 4 tackles. On the other side of the field Mike Jenkins stepped up and had 2 tackles and one interception.  But the defensive performer of the day was our SS Gerald Sensabaugh with a total of 6 tackles and an interception.

Our defense held the Eagles to 4/12 3rd down attempts keeping it at only 33%. Stopping them on a critical 4th and inches play and taking over on downs. Our defends held them to 3.7 yards per rushing attempt and only 5.2 average yards per offensive play keeping them under 300 total yards of offense on the day.  Time of possession was pretty close throughout the game with the Cowboys having the edge at 31:44 to the Eagles 28:16. At the end of the day, the better team won. What do you say we go into Green Bay this week and continue our winning streak and come back home on a high note!

Weekly Game Balls: Week 9

Riding high on a four game winning streak feels pretty good, doesn’t it! What a great game last Sunday night, it was a perfect example of a team coming together for a victory against an intense rivalry. The teamwork executed by the Cowboys made it even harder to choose game balls this week. Of course, that’s a great problem to have. In the words of Coach Phillips, “Everybody made plays when the game was on the line.”

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Marion Barber.

Marion Barber only rushed 12 times for 50 yards, but the true reason he is receiving this week’s game ball is for what he did in the last offensive drive of the game.

According to a story told by Keith Brooking, Barber came up to the defensive players on the sidelines and said:

‘I got this, the last offensive series. Don’t you worry guys.’

He was telling his teammates that he was going to seal the deal. He knew they had worked hard and he was guaranteeing them their work was done and the win was secure.

Barber did as promised and ran three consecutive plays accumulating 23 yards.

Now that may not do anything for his fantasy ratings but in my book that makes him clutch.

Thanks for your hard work Barber!


This week’s defensive/special teams game ball goes to Jay Ratliff.

Can you say BEAST?

Jay Ratliff finished the day with 5 tackles and 2 sacks for losses of 17 yards.

I also enjoyed the story about him getting into it with Wade Phillips.

Wade Phillips told reporters a story from halftime…

“At halftime, we came in and he says, ‘My fault on the running game,’” Phillips recalled about Ratliff. “And I said, ‘No it isn’t your fault.’ He jumps back at me and said ‘ITS MY FAULT’ I said, ‘Ok it’s your fault.’ But he said he would get it corrected. And sure enough they had 16 yards rushing in the second half, so it wasn’t all his fault, he played some things different second half than he did in first half.”

Keep howling J-Rat!


Way to go to Barber and Ratliff!

Honorable Mention: Roy Williams with 5 catches and 75 yards, Gerald Sensabaugh with 6 tackles and an interception, and Mike Jenkins for just being awesome and making me shout ‘JENKS’ several times each game after he makes an amazing play.

Weekly Game Balls: Week 5

What a game. Should have not been as close as it was but a win is a win. We have seen some first and a record breaking day.

What a game! It should have not been as close as it was, but a win is a win. We witnessed some firsts and a record breaking day.

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Miles Austin.

This speedy wide receiver had a record breaking day with 250 yards on 10 catches with 2 game saving touchdowns.

His first score almost won the game for the Cowboys, but the one in overtime counted for the “W”.

Austin just might have earned his starting spot. Miles is the game breaking threat the Cowboys need.

He also could have had a few more touchdowns on the day. But he couldn’t secure a couple of throws from Tony.

Great job Miles Austin.


This week’s defensive/special teams game ball goes to Keith Brooking.

Brooking is the solid linebacker that was needed to compliment the defense.

Brooking finished the game with 8 solo tackles and helped on 3 more. He also recorded a sack on Matt Cassel. He came flying from up the middle to take him down.

With all the pressure the Cowboys gave the Chiefs on Sunday, Keith also had 4 QB hits.

His leadership speaks for itself. You can find the veteran linebacker running up and down the sidelines when he’s not on the field. He gets this team pumped up! It feels like Brooking has been a Cowboy all of his life.

Keep up the great work Keith Brooking!


Congratulations to Austin and Brooking for their great contribution to the overtime win.

Honorable Mention: DeMarcus Ware, Tony Romo, Jay Ratliff

A Win Is A Win…Right?

Dallas Cowboys 26 – Kansas City Chiefs 20, in OVERTIME. Yes I did say overtime, a place Dallas really should of never been in this game. I will give credit to the Chiefs for their hard fought part of the game, they came to play. But the lack-luster performance of the Cowboys still has me very concerned for any legitimate run at the Super Bowl. This turned out to be a classic example of how the Dallas Cowboys now play their games, ugly. By the end I had handfuls of hair on the floor to pickup, and heard inappropriate words coming out of my mouth I didnt even know I knew (sorry kids). But they did get the win which in the big picture is the most important thing and we will take it.

However it does bring up the fact that they still have a lot of work to do, and there are changes that need to be made. If you look at just the stats of this game, 498 total yards (348 passing, 150 yards rushing) you would think this team was a model of efficiency. But 119 of those passing yards came on two receptions to Miles Austin, one being a 60 yard touchdown and the other being a 59 yard touchdown and both mainly because of the yards after the catch Austin was able to get after breaking tackles. Miles did a great job filling in for the ailing Roy Williams who didnt even make the trip to Kansas City. Tashard Choice taking the extra carries that would of gone to Felix Jones (knee) also did a nice job when called upon. Choice had 92 yards and a touchdown on only 8 carries.

One statistic that really gets under my skin, and seems to be a staple in every Cowboys game and season is the amount of penalties they have. 13 penalties for 90 yards, 13 for 90?! How can you expect to win with that many penalties and that many yards? If this game was against a team even slightly better than the Chiefs the Cowboys would of lost this game, that is unacceptable and shows a huge lack of discipline. As I continue to watch Dallas games I am starting to see a few things that add to my concern for this team.

Wade Phillips is one of the concerns. I have no ill will towards Wade Phillips, seems like a nice guy, probably easy to get a long with, but he may be too nice. He doesn’t seem like the Head Coach type. Obviously I dont know him, I am not at team meetings or practices but I get the feeling he doesn’t know how to yell, or especially motivate. It seems that his personality actually carries over to the team which could be hurting them. Eventually owner Jerry Jones will make a change at Head Coach for his team, not sure when but it will happen, it has to. Another observation I really noticed in this game was lack of composure in Tony Romo. He seems to over throw, or throw behind players at even the slightest feeling of pressure. He is a quarterback and needs to be able to throw accurately while under pressure and then take a hit.

Like I said earlier, the Dallas Cowboys have a lot of work still to do. The good thing is the season is still young, and there is plenty of time to make the changes necessary to become a dominate team. But it seems to me that these issues are the same issues we have been talking about for the past few seasons with no better results. Stop the penalties, Romo stand and deliver, Wade Phillips grow a back bone and motivate or move on, and I think the rest will fall into place. We have a bye week next week so lets get healthy, then we come back and take it to the Atlanta Falcons in Dallas. This will be a good test for the Boys to see how far they have come, lets get another win, and this time make it an unquestionable one.

Weekly Game Balls: Week 4

Sometimes its hard to find anything positive from such a heartbreaking loss, however several players did play well and for that they deserve to be recognized.

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Sam Hurd.

Sam Hurd, who has been nearly invisible offensively this year, zig-zagged his way down the field on 4th and 3 to set up a chance for the Cowboys to win last Sunday.

Hurd finished the game with 62 yards on 3 catches. He made up most of those yards his 3rd catch, a 53-yard gain.

Sam was also thrown to twice in the final seconds but could not secure the ball. He was covered by the Pro Bowler Champ Bailey.

We are likely to see more of Sam Hurd with Roy Williams injured this week.


This week’s defensive/special teams game ball goes to Bradie James.

Bradie James was a beast out there. He helped give the Cowboys a chance in the game.

With the offense sputtering, the defense was needed to step up and Bradie led the way. With the exception of the Brandon Marshall touchdown (in which they couldn’t tackle), the defense gave Denver quarterback Kyle Orton all kinds of pressure.

James finished the game with 6 tackles with 2 assists. He also had 1 sack and a fumble recovery.


Congratulations to Sam and Bradie for their outstanding play.

That was a game the Dallas Cowboys should of won. Kansas City is next, hopefully the Cowboys will give us an overwhelming win and that should make it more satisfying to give out game balls next week.

Runners-up: The Entire Defense

Weekly Game Balls: Week 3

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Tashard Choice.

The quickness and toughness he showed against the Panthers defense made him an easy “Choice”. On any other team Choice would easily be an every down back. The Cowboy’s depth in the backfield was on full display Monday night.

It’s really fun to watch his signature “T.C.” every time he scores a touchdown.

Choice had 82 yards on 18 carries with one touchdown, he also had a 2 point conversion. He also hauled in a remarkable 8 catches for another 36 yards.

Although the injuries to Marion and Felix sadden me, we don’t miss a beat when Tashard Choice is on the field, and that truly shows the remarkable depth we have at running back.


This week’s defensive/special teams game ball goes to Terence Newman.

T-New sealed the game for us with his interception returned 27 yards for a touchdown. Terence finished the night with only 3 tackles but he did cause a fumble. This one was close with Victor Butler who also forced a fumble and recorded two sacks.

Despite missing several tackles in a shaky first half, Newman bounced back and kept the Panthers’ top receiver Steve Smith in check.

“Before the game we talked about how our defensive line and linebackers did their job last week and how we didn’t do our job,” Newman said. “So I told them ‘Hey it’s on us. We’ve got to shut these guys down.’ We let this team down last week and we have to make up for it this week.”


Congratulations to Tashard and Terence for their outstanding play.

Runners-up: Victor Butler, Patrick Crayton

Give Credit Where Credit Is Due

Yes ESPN, we fans realize the Cowboys just won against the struggling (now 0-3) Panthers. Carolina played a lot better than anyone expected, mostly in the first half.

Several guys stepped up in this game, so I’d like to give credit where credit is due.

I’m talking specifically about Patrick Crayton and Tashard Choice on offense. Crayton made several very crucial plays, and kept his head in the game, playing smart football all night long.

Choice, who I believe should have started the game, came away with 82 yards on 18 carries and one touchdown plus a 2-point conversion. If not for a bone-headed move by the rookie 3rd tight end, John Phillips, Choice probably would have had another TD. In addition, after the game he had a very impressive interview on the field with the ESPN analysts.

Defensively, Keith Brooking, Jay Ratliff and Terence Newman really excelled tonight. In the beginning Newman didn’t look so hot, missing tackles and looking foolish and aged. However, his interception for a 27-yard touchdown in the 4th quarter reminded us why we love him.

I must admit I am falling head over heels for Mr. Ratliff. Who would expect our nose tackle to get the first sack of the year? Why not when its the beast who is known as JRAT.

As for Brooking, what a wonderful acquisition for the Cowboys. Brooking, a strong, solid veteran linebacker, led the team in tackles tonight with five. It seemed like every time the defense came in, I found myself cheering his name.

Special teams also deserves some props. It’s been way too long since we could say that. Well done Coach Joe DeCamillis, well done sir.

I just wanted to rant about ESPN for a minute, and say that despite the opponent – I am proud of this team and what they did tonight. I believe it was a well-deserved win and they worked hard to earn that “W”.

Then again, I am just an optimistic, biased Cowboys fan. 😉

Weekly Game Balls: Preseason Week 4

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Kevin Ogletree.

In the finale of the short preseason, Kevin Ogletree once again impressed and pretty much locked in his spot on the 53-man roster. Rookie Ogletree made it easy for coaches to make the decision to cut Isaiah Stanback and go with him as the 5th wide receiver.

“Every ball is important to me, every down, every play,” Ogletree said. “So when you take that approach and you’re as hungry as I am to try to make the team, you do what you can.”

Ogletree caught two passes for a total on 14 yards and a touchdown in the first quarter before leaving last Friday’s game with an eye contusion.


This week’s defensive game ball goes to Pat Watkins.

Pat Watkins dominated the game last Friday proving he deserved his spot on the roster. The fourth-year safety made a clutch tackle on a fourth-and-one with 1:59 left in the first half that prevented a Vikings touchdown. Then he blocked a field goal with nine seconds left on the clock, to end the first half and prevent another Vikings scoring opportunity. Finally, he opened the third quarter with a a dazzling 23-yard interception return for a touchdown. It was a big day for the Cowboys’ backup safety.

“I had a feeling like I was going to have a good game, and I had a couple people send me text messages with predictions,” Watkins said. “Someone predicted six tackles and an interception. Somebody else predicted eight tackles. So after that maybe I need more predictions to help me out.”

Whatever it takes Watkins, keep up the good work!


Congratulations to Kevin and Pat for their outstanding play.

Runners-up: Steven Octavien for his 44-yard interception returned for a touchdown and Jesse Holley for his brave 82-yard punt return for a touchdown that in turn won the game.

The Secondary Is A Primary Concern

With the draft just around the corner, some feel it’s time to start thinking about a corner. It certainly seems that the deal for Tennessee Titan Adam Jones is inevitable but, considering his past antics, that brings little security at the position.

The Dallas secondary isn’t nearly as inept as some "experts" would have you believe. Pro Bowl CB Terence Newman is coming in healthy this year which is huge. Anthony Henry holds his own most of the time. Henry had 6 interceptions in 13 games last season. While not stellar, that is still more than the two previous seasons(28 starts) combined. Newman had 4 INT’s in as many games.

This "lacking secondary" had 19 INT’s last year. Tied for 4th in the NFL in INT’s doesn’t seem lacking or inept to me. The secondary was and is above average in every category. Things have a tendency to get skewed because of the occasional big play given up by the secondary. Just keep in mind the injuries suffered by Newman and Henry throughout the season. Newman fought through foot and knee injuries throughout the 2007 campaign. Henry had a nasty ankle late last season. So the alarm about the Dallas secondary- at least the CB’s- is much ado about nothing.

We all know Roy Williams isn’t a traditional safety. I’ve been a huge critic of Williams over the last 2 seasons. Williams is a great run defender. He had 30 more tackles in 2007 than in the previous season. But I’m sure everyone will agree that if there is a hole in the secondary. That hole wears the number 31. He can’t cover TE’s like Shockey or Cooley consistently.

A 2/28/2008 report in the Star-Telegram brings up concerns about Williams’ behavior in relations to the players and staff. The Star- Telegram reports: " He has become a bit of enigma in the locker room; the defense normally goes out to eat as a unit on Thursdays during game weeks, but Williams seldom attends. He has displayed a tendency to blame others for pass coverage breakdowns, something his teammates have noticed… Coaches, former coaches, teammates and ex-teammates have tried to talk to Williams, but they often receive the same defiant and defensive posturing he takes with his "friends" in the media."

Why not trade Williams? Nobody is going to take the salary cap hit that Williams would bring to the table. He signed a 4 year, $25 million extension in 2006. Trade him? Not gonna happen.

So as we approach the April 26 2008 draft, do we need go to after a corner? Maybe we consider a safety instead? Maybe use Williams in short-yardage and goal line situations in 2008? I don’t pretend to know all the answers to these questions. What I do know is this team is so so close to that illusive 6th trophy. It’s there for the taking. Right around the corner.