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Big Boss' Blast: Week 11

By Tony Peralez
(Sorry it’s a week late, interface problems with the site…felt it was still necessary to post. New column Wednesday at the latest folks)

Well, is anyone else disappointed?

I love my team and back them up down to fisticuffs no matter who it’s against or why! But this weekend was just a let down.

As previously dictated, the defense should have considered Aaron Rodgers an all you can eat buffet with surf, turf, and slow smoked ribs straight outta Rudy’s! And they did! The defense of course, like they have been, were as solid as a rock and did more than their fair share of keeping the team alive.

The Cowboys Defense made big plays, including 2 INT’s, 4 sacks, and brought intense pressure all day long. They did great against a team who fights for the lead in teams with most completions for 20-yards or more. And a lot of these long completions are on third down. Wins and losses aside, the Doomsday Day we’ve grown accustomed to held the packers to just 17 points which is nothing to be disappointed in. Especially considering that the Packers offense ruled the third quarter with owning time on the clock equaling to eleven minutes!

If there was anything more disappointing about Sunday’s game, I think we can all agree on the lack of balance that was provided by the offense, and more so my own personal gripe, the absence of Jason Witten.

Now lets give them credit, the Green Bay Defense had Dallas’ number. The Cowboys offense, more often than not, were in tough third down situations that limited their opportunity to run well. Jason Garrett, Cowboys Offensive Coordinator, called 44 pass plays to the Cowboys 11 run plays. Although the ‘Boys have been incredibly balanced all season, why should this game be any different. Garrett answered with this comment:

"I think if you look at the numbers we just had very few plays," Garrett said. "And we threw it the last 27 plays of the game because we were down three scores with 10 minutes to go. Obviously that's not what we want. We want the balance early in the game to lead to being out in front, and continue that. But that's what happens in the game, and what you try to do is find what happens to give your team the best chance to win at that point.

"Unfortunately, some games circumstances got us into a situation where we had to throw it a ton at the end and it gets it out of whack. It's not what we're trying to do."

Garrett is right here my friends, but I’ll tell you where is most right in this quote. “We want the balance early in the game to lead to being out in front...” That’s what the Cowboys were missing.

But on to more important and relevant things folks, this is a long season with a lot more games to play. We all, as fans, have more things to be concerned about, including my man Mike Jenkins bicep injury. He has practiced this week but looks like he’ll be more of a game-time decision. Ken Hamlin, another great surprise on the Cowboy’s D left the game late with an ankle injury. Dallas didn’t even have enough members in the secondary to play a nickel defense!

Enter Orlando Scandrick! Still a young cat with this being only his second year in the league, Scandrick was not ready to be thrown in that game against a pass happy Green Bay team. He committed two different penalties late in the game that really set back the defense and gave the offense no hope to come back. Let’s hope they are on the road to full recovery soon. The Washington Redskins could be a decent game to play without a full D, but you can never push any team to the wayside in this league (unless they are the Cleveland Browns or Detroit Lions).

So this week the Cowboys host the ‘Skins for their first match up this season. We all know that the Redskins have been anything but present this season. Although their defense is weak and have no real quarterback to lead this team, they defeated a tough Denver Broncos team last week. Nobody saw that coming, but the injury to Bronco’s quarterback, Kyle Orton, didn’t exactly hurt the ‘Skins chances.

This week the Redskins have to play without their beast of a running back, Clinton Portis, due to a concussion he suffered against the Atlanta Falcons. Ledell Betts made his first career start since 2006 and ran for 114 yards on 26 carries against a strong Denver Defense.

Outside of the “Talented Mr. Betts”, I’d say the Cowboys have won a lottery this week: the lottery of who gets to play the Washington Redskins. It’ll give Dallas a really good chance to work on some run defense as well as bring Jason Witten back into the mix. Taking advantage of splitting zone coverage with Witten has to be one of the smartest and easiest things to do. Or what about just reading mismatches on the man, too hard to be brought down by a defensive back but can outrun most linebacking cores? Doesn’t this sound like an offensive coordinator’s dream tight end? But some how he has a career low 8.9 yards per catch and only one touchdown this season that came in a loss against the so falsely feared “G Men” of New York.

But what do I know? I’m just a wannabe sports journalist who’s really a college student with a major in PR.

I think that Garrett just needs to get his act together and play with the entire offense like he did a couple of weeks ago in Philly, and even further back than that when Dallas played Atlanta. Develop a run game so your QB doesn’t have to play on his heels. Develop a run game so that you can slow down the defense and confuse the play caller. Develop the run game because you have Marion Barber, Felix Jones, and Tashard Choice in your backfield. Develop the run game! Do it early so that the ‘Boys aren’t hampered to a single dimension where the defense knows what you’re doing every down.

Ok well I’ve ranted way more than necessary this week. Look forward to a nice show in Jerryworld this weekend because the Cowboys will take out some frustration on Dan Snyder’s ‘Skins. You can catch the show at noon so “get your popcorn ready” and open the cold ones because both these teams will be out for blood in this divisional rivalry!

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