Sunday, August 19, 2012

Much Better Against the Chargers

I was really worried about the 2012 Dallas Cowboys coming out of the Raider game.  It wasn't the defense that had me concerned.  It was the offense and especially the offensive line.  The entire team looked much more prepared and capable this time around.  I have renewed faith that the Cowboys can be a playoff team this season.

I have to start my game review by admitting that I was dead wrong about Kevin Ogletree.  I had written him off after his disappearing act that season.  I was convinced that he was never going to amount to much for the Cowboys.  But maybe he has been the 3rd receiver everyone has been clamoring about.  If he really has turned the corner in his play like it appears then he is the perfect fit as the #3 receiver.  He can play inside and outside and he has enough speed to keep the defense honest.  He hasn't sewn up the #3 spot yet, but he is way ahead of the competition at this point.

And really I have to say I am pretty satisfied with the entire receiving corp all around minus the play of Andre Holmes.  Dwayne Harris and Cole Beasley looked like they can at least fill in decently if one of the top three receivers gets injured.  Raymond Radway still doesn't seem to be the guy we saw last preseason but he is still battling to come back from his horrific leg injury.  And the hustle that Radway displayed to run down the San Diego defender after McGee's interception was great to see.  Andre Holmes has got to make tough catches in traffic if he wants to make the team.  It is great that he is big and he can jump high, but it doesn't really matter if he isn't going to make the play.

The entire offensive line was much better this week.  Doug Free was a different guy this week except for one play where he completely lost his footing and fell down.  David Arkin was better even if he did commit 3 penalties.  Arkin seems to have a little more power in the running game than Phil Costa.  It is nice to see one of the young guys the Cowboys have drafted developing into at least a very good backup this season and maybe even a starter at left guard if Nate Livings can't get healthy enough to play.  Mackenzy Bernardeau didn't stand out but that is a good thing for an offensive lineman when he goes unnoticed during a game.  Overall the pass blocking by the entire offensive line was excellent.

I was thrilled to see the two interceptions that Brandon Carr came up with in the first half.  I can't remember the last time I saw a cornerback for the Cowboys play the ball so aggressively.  Carr isn't satisfied just to break up the pass or get a quick tackle.  He is playing to make the turnover when it is there.  A few plays like that last season could have put the Cowboys in the playoffs. 

Morris Claiborne got his first game action this preseason.  He didn't do anything spectacular but the moment didn't look too big for him either.  From what I could see out of him it appeared that he did a good job covering his man.  Hopefully he will get challenged a little more by the opposing quarterback in the upcoming preseason games.

Barry Church was flying to the ball again this game.  He is quickly becoming one of the guys I really like to watch as the play unfolds because he seems to have a great feel for the flow of a play.  It reminds me of how I can watch Sean Lee during a play and 9 out of 10 times Lee will be exactly where the ball ends up.

Felix Jones looks terrible.  I don't know what is up with that guy but he needs to kick it into gear.  It is not good when Jamize Olawale makes more guys miss in the open field than Felix Jones.  This is a contract year for Felix so I am really surprised to see such uninspired play out of him.  The Cowboys need his speed on offense so hopefully he'll find his game before the regular season starts.

Speaking of Olawale, I love this guy.  I can't remember the last time the Cowboys had a big bruising running back for short yardage situations.  He has a great chance to make the team and get some meaningful playing time this season if he can consistently move the pile in short yardage situations.  And the fact that he can catch the ball out of the backfield just makes him that much more valuable.  It will likely come down to whether Olawale can find a role on special teams in determining if he makes the final roster.

Victor Butler and Alex Albright did a very good job filling in for Anthony Spencer and Demarcus Ware.  It feels like the Cowboys finally have some real depth behind their two starters.

I hope the Cowboys can continue to get their roster back to full strength.  I am excited to see what the defense is capable of with all of the starters back on the field.  I really hope we get to see Spencer, Ware, and Hatcher all back on the field with the starters next week against the Rams.  This defense has the potential to be dominating this season.


  1. I missed the game. Thought it was today -.-

    Looks like they had some good moments. Of course the 3rd string defense lost it in the 4th. But I mean really that is completely acceptable in my opinion. We barely are able to run a 1st string defense so I don't know why we magically have the depth to run an alternate defense well. Just not there yet. Couple more years then yea sure.

    But all in all from the highlights it looked good. Stats wise Kyle Orton came out on top QB again. Which I think he is the person to watch this preseason. Dropped from 2 teams has got to sting. He might be begging for a come back.

    And whether he legitmately takes the 1st string QB position from Romo. Or Romo gets hurt (which he will so don't be surprised.). We are going to need K.Orton to step up and play the best football of his life. Which I think he might.

    I know what your saying 'WBF how could you say such a thing about our best QB ever?!' Simple. He's gonna get hit, he's gonna get hurt, and he's gonna be out some games. Been that way for 2 years consecutively now. Why would it change all the sudden this season whenever the line has gotten worse!!!!

    As to why the injuries are happening. I seem to remember JJ getting rid of the head trainer a few seasons ago. They might need to get a new head trainer to keep the boys limber and less accident prone. Texas Tech had the same issue when they fired their trainer. Trainers prevent injuries more than any other variable in my opinion. Well except for the QB sacks. More QB sacks = Greater chance of injury.


  2. Sorry for wall of texting. Thought I would make this point as well. 4 years i've been on this blog commenting on dang near every post. I've always been pro-Romo but i'm ready for the joke to end and get a new QB. They should have taken the once in a lifetime opportunity and went after Peyton Manning.


  3. need to drop this Romo-hater rant you are on. I know you see that there are bigger issues at play with this team over the last three seasons than one of the top QB's in the NFL. This team will go as far as Romo and the defense take them. We are in serious trouble if Orton has to start for more than a game or two.

  4. I think that Romo and the offensive needs some help, and the one thing that could take the pressure off them is some depth at WR. With Witten, Bryant and Austin all who've been hit by the bug or sooner or later will be hit by it they need to grab Shipley and i wrote all about it here come by read and enjoy!

  5. AceSmith...the Cowboys have already stated that they won't be putting in a waiver claim for Jordan Shipley. But thanks for inappropriately finding a way to put in a link to your site that seems devoted to sports gambling.

  6. Just wanted to go on the record R2W. It's not a Romo-hater rant it's a pro-Cowboy rant.

    But alas I find no support. Although then again... It would seem to me that a top 5 QB as you claim would have lead the Cowboys to 1 playoff victory. Key words lead playoff victory.

    But I will be completely fair how can a QB do any good whatsoever with no running game and no blocking. Last year we fixed the running game. F.Jones just needs to get shown the door if they haven't already. I think he quit playing 3 seasons ago.

    Now if our lineman get off the injury list then we might be able to protect Romo and he can make some nice calm cool headed decisions on where to throw the ball.

    And again to defend Romo. 'fans' love when he scrambles and chucks the ball down 50 yards and it miracles it's way into a receivers hands. Then it is 'How good he is under pressure.' then they turn tail whenever he airs one out and the Defense comes up with it. (Which was because Dez Bryant didn't know his routes. Can't remember the game but you know what i'm talking about. He went right Romo threw left.)

    But maybe this is the year of the Super Bowl. At minimum it can be the year of the playoff. If it's not you know whats coming down the pipe.

    So I agree with you even if Romo is wonderfully mediocre he isn't going to cost or win us a game. There are many factors as to why the Cowboys melt down every December and play like a bunch of clowns. And i'm just a fool on the circus.

    So i'm on board. But the first Hail Mary that gets thrown out of bounds this year and i'm out. I'll pack up my bags and find a Texan website. That is a sin against all Cowboy history.


  7. I personally hope they decide not to keep a 3rd QB on the active roster. McGee doesn't really seem to be progressing in my opinion. He doesn't make his reads fast enough, holds the ball too long. Now, if they do that, what do you fill that extra spot with? Defensive depth? WR depth?

  8. Romo is not the problem. Period.

  9. Was just reading the article, "Offense Showed Some Restraint, Maybe Too Much".

    After reading that article, thats scares me. There is no "fight" left in us? Not saying fist fight per-say, but where is the support of ones teammates at? Maybe there is more there than we know of, but really? In HS, yes, I know HS is a long shot from NFL, but Team is a Team no matter when and where. HS, rather it be the bench warmer or starter, if crap went down, we had their back.

    That just worries me a bit. Maybe I'm reading more into than I should.

    Thoughts anyone?


  10. "I can't remember the last time the Cowboys had a big bruising running back for short yardage situations."

    I don't know, mam, isn't that kind of dissing Marion Barber? He wasn't huge but he gave out his share of bruises. And he did it in exciting fashion. Hopefully, if this Olowale turns out to be as good as Barber, you're right, he'll definitely help us win.