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Dallas at Seattle: don't worry - they didn't practice this week. Right?

Tim's picture

I hardly know where to begin, so let me start with Moose Johnston's late game comment about how Jason Garrett always has his guys prepared.

Sorry, Moose, you're wrong.

I like Jason Garrett, but if the Barry Switzer or Wade Phillips Cowboys laid an egg like this, we wouldn't be praising the coach. Special Teams gave up ten points, the defense made a rookie QB look like Joe Montana and the offense couldn't catch a cold or convert European voltage on their laptops. (Sorry - ran out of metaphors.) As Phil Yewdall says, "When all three phases fail, you blame the coach."

Yes. Or the talent - or lack thereof. Time will tell.

It seems like I've said this a lot over the last few years, but did these guys even practice this week? At least seven first down passes were dropped - and not by Dwayne Harris or Cole Beasley - by Jason Witten and Dez Bryant. Really? On a late game play, Romo launched it deep where it tumbled harmlessly on the grass. Replays showed Miles Austin stopped running. On a broken play early, he launched it deep to Witten and hit him on the shoulder pad. Tough catch? Maybe. But tough catch for Witten? On a third and long, Romo hit Bryant right in the face. Okay, first in the hands, then in the face.

Just this morning, I watched a local show about "the Garrett Way." I think it had something to do with being really buttoned up and buttoned down in interviews. I am pretty sure it had nothing to do with actually winning football games.

So, on to the quarterback.

Romo has thrown 19 interceptions over his last two full seasons. That's an extraordinarily low total. And give him this: he normally finds very creative ways to turn the ball over from week to week. Not this year. His picks in Week 1 and week 2 were almost identical, lending more credence to my theory that the team did not prepare in any way for today's game, because there is no way Romo watched last week's game film.

In the first half, the score was pretty close, all things considered. Take away the blocked punt for a touchdown and the Cowboys led the score. They also led - by wide margins - every other statistical category. I wasn't worried.

But I kind of hoped the team was worried. Based on their second half performance, I think they spent halftime reclining on locker room benches while cheerleaders fed them grapes.

Seattle, a la Clubber Lang, spent halftime doing pullups on ropes in a barn.

I can't explain all the drops. Maybe Witten was trying to catch passes with his spleen. Whatever the reason, he dropped at least four balls, all of which would have been first downs, and two of which were likely TD passes. Dez Bryant muffed a punt, dropped a tough one after a hit - but he had it tucked away, dropped another when he was completely uncovered, and fumbled yet another, which Doug Free recovered.

A little perspective? Okay. Last week I said the results suggested that the Giants might really suck this year. Today, the Giants won, but Manning threw three interceptions, and their defense gave up 34 points to an inept offense. Last week, Seattle lost to the Cardinals in a game they'd have won but for a dropped pass on the final play. Today, the Cardinal beat the Patriots at New England.

So far, the returns are not good, but we do not yet know which teams are actually good - including the Cowboys.

As for today...

I do not know where Felix Jones will be playing next year, but it won't be Dallas. Today, though, he provided perfect bookends for the game. He opened it by fumbling on a kick return. He closed it by simply falling to the ground with no contact.

That about sums it up - Dallas collapsed.

philyew3
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Joined: 11/05/2007

You got it almost all there, Tim.
One question. One comment.
What happened to Laurent Crayton (aka Kevin Ogletree) this week? After a great 26 yard reception early in the game, and a laboriously executed end around on the very next play, he totally disappeared. Like Barry Church disappeared, until we learned he'd been injured.Never heard anything about an injury to LC though... 
The only thing I would add is in relation to Felix Jones... JG, for pity's sake, until you find a kick returner that is more dynamic than Felix Jones, tell him to take a knee in the endzone and not try running it back. I know the kick didn't reach the EZ when he fumbled, but really he just doesn't have any game to get past the 20-21 yard line, and more often loses yards over taking a touchback.
 
I would also like to add the word "putrid." Yes, that is a very appropriate word. That was unquestionably a putrid performance all round.