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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.

Friday’s Cowboy Notes

Here it is Friday, a couple days before game time. This is usually the time where Cowboys fans, or football fans in general begin to get that itch, to get that feeling as the excitement starts to build for the upcoming battles of the weekend. Statistics are showing that interest in the sport are the highest they have been in twenty years or so, and you can feel it and see it everywhere you look. Right now Cowboys fans still have this feeling, but I think it is a bit more subdued as we are unsure of which way our team is going to go. We seem to be on the apex of our season right now and we are only four games in, teetering on the point where if it gets worse we will slide back down to another disappointing season. But if they are able to turn it around and take care of business the point at which they sit can become just a step as they climb back up to the top where we know they can and should be. It NEEDS to start this weekend against the the Kansas City Chiefs. A loss against this team can and probably will force the Cowboys down to another dreadful season.

Injuries are obviously a part of the game, and Dallas has had their share early on. Wide Receiver Roy Williams and Strong Safety Gerald Sensabaugh will not practice Friday and their status for the game this weekend is doubtful.

“We’ll wait and see [up until] the last minute on all those guys,” Phillips said before Friday’s practice. “They haven’t gotten a lot better, so you want to be well enough to play. You don’t want to play with injured players … and they haven’t gotten to the point, right now, where it looks like they will be ready.”

Miles Austin will take Roy Williams starting spot in the likely event he will not play, and as Kelly mentioned earlier in the week Safety Patrick Watkins would replace Sensabaugh in the secondary. Running Back Felix Jones also will not practice and has been ruled out for this weekends game, while Center Andre Gurode has improved and will most likely play. Tackle Flozell Adams and Running Back Marion Barber were full participants in practice, and the Barbarian should have a big day against the suspect Chiefs defense.

With Barber coming back we really need Tony Romo to step it up. We all know his play the last couple games (I hate to say it) has been horrible. We need him to be confident in his ability and in his team and try to stretch the field against the Chiefs. Tony is only 1-7 for 80 yards, a touchdown and an interception on pass attempts of 21 yards or more on the season. That is not good and it has to change and if he is able to do this it should open up the running game for Marion Barber and Tashard Choice.

You wouldn’t know it but the Cowboys are tied for fourth in total offense (3rd rush, 13 pass) and 26th in total defense (18th rush, 29th Pass). I think the lack of defense is what jumps out to me, that too has to change. So fans dont give up yet. The Cowboys are 8 1/2 point favorites as of right now and have a very winnable game this weekend. So before you jump off lets wait and see if the Boys can do what they are supposed to do to the Chiefs, and if for some reason they dont, I will be the first to clear the way down.

Quotes: Coach and Players Reflect on Week 4

Wade Phillips: “Our team is going to stay together. Our team is going to keep fighting, keep working harder, keep trying to do the things it takes to get better, and we’re going to do that getting ready for this next ball game.

“This team has worked a long time and very hard to stop believing in what we’re doing, stop trusting each other. We’re going to work at it and get better and do something about it.”

Mike Jenkins: “After a loss like that it really hurts. It’s going to happen no matter what, the finger-pointing. Just don’t let it come out, and if you do, do it in a manly fashion. Go up to the person you think had a bad game or you think could have done better, and let them know it. Don’t do it by telling everybody and putting their business out there. At the end of the day you hug each other and still be brothers, and come back as a team.”

“I hope it doesn’t turn out like last year. The situation last year, just finger-pointing, everybody. Just come in, watch the film, everybody correct each other and don’t take it personally. That’s the main thing we need to do is not take it personally and just stick together.”

Jason Witten: “I think this team has done a great job of understanding and learning from that [last season]. Just stay at the grind. We still have a lot of football left and everybody’s playing hard.”

Patrick Crayton: “It’s time for us to really check ourselves now and say, `Hey, look here, regardless of what it’s going to take, we have to come out and we have to start winning these games ugly at the end and be consistent. We’ve got too good of an offense to even put our defense in a situations to where they’ve got to carry us.”

Patrick Crayton (as usual had a lot to say): “We’ve got five freaks of nature up front that are calling for us to run the ball, you would think you’d listen to those guys. We’re trying to grind it out and get an ugly victory. We’re on the road against a 3-0 football team with the No. 1 defense and we blew them out of the water to start the game off, don’t deviate away from that.”

Tony Romo: “When the game is in that situation at that time, we knew that our defense was playing great football and any kind of points would have helped out tremendously. It’s very frustrating not to be able to do that.”

Tony Romo: “It’s a long season. There’s going to be a lot of ups and downs along the way. You obviously want to have one of those streaks where you can run off six, eight wins in a row. Hopefully we can get that started this week.”

Ken Hamlin: “Who says we’re mediocre? Being 2-2 doesn’t mean you’re mediocre. I can go back in the past and go through teams who were 1-2 or 2-2 or whatever at this time and still went to the Super Bowl.”

Bradie James: “We still have a lot of ball to play. But next month, we won’t have a lot of ball to play. So we need to right some wrongs right now and find a way.”

And lastly, my personal favorite…

Keith Brooking: “We didn’t play good enough to win. It doesn’t matter what the offense did. We went into the half and it was our game to win. We were up 10-7 and if they don’t score anymore then we win. They had one long drive on us and one long play. I don’t care how good we played for 64-of-65 plays if there are 65 plays in the game you have to play well for 65 plays. I don’t want to hear the offense getting blamed. We win as a team and we lose as a team.”

“We’re done with the first quarter of the season. The ball game’s tied up. We’ve got to win the next three quarters. It’s the only way I know to look at it.

“We win the next three quarters and we’re going to be where we want to be.”

***NOTE: These quotes were taken from dallascowboys.com, dallasnews.com, Yahoo! Sports, and ESPN.com

Michael Irvin is OK

Today I was on the Cowboys website and could not belive this when I seen it and I thank god Irvin is ok.

Former Cowboys great Michael Irvin apparently avoided a dangerous situation at a redlight in North Dallas Monday night.

 Irvin filed a police report stating a passenger in an adjacent vehicle flashed a gun after he rolled down his window. Recognizing the Hall of Fame recevier, the men instead began talking about the cowboys with Irvin and eventually drove away peacefully.

 On his radio show Wednesday (ESPN 103.3 FM) Irvin shrugged off speculation that the police report was merely a publicity stunt.

 “I was a little bit worried – I was a lot bit worried – about what else was going to happen with those guys, what else they were doing,” Irvin said. “The way they got back on the highway said to me, ‘Maybe we’ll find somebody else since we couldn’t do that there.’ So yeah, I went ahead with it (the report).

 “I don’t have another strike to give. So trust me, I wouldn’t fill out a false police report.”

 Who could have ever guessed that Irvin’s ball play on the field would eventually save him from some dangerous car-jackers who just happened to be Cowboys fans. I myself am very pleased that Irvin is ok and was able to come away from this situation unharmed.