Monday, December 12, 2005

Cowboys-Chiefs post mortem

I'm back in the Emerald City and trying to shake off the 4 gallons of terror-induced adrenaline that got pumped into my system during the extremely choppy flight, so I'll be up for a while. Since sleep is out of the question at the moment, I'd like make a few Cowboy points before the Monday morning papers hit the stands and totally cloud my thinking.

Offensive line

These guys blocked a little, which is what gave the Cowboys a chance (as mentioned here on Saturday). Bledsoe still got clobbered a few times, but it was a lot better than last week. Of course, no one is going to confuse Jared Allen with Michael Strahan, or, for that matter, the KC defensive front with the Giants'. Regardless, Bledsoe had time and that makes one heck of a difference.

Cowboys' running game

Marion Barber showed some flashes, which was encouraging. Who the heck is this guy wearing number 21? Where is the Julius Jones who ripped up the NFL late last season? One hopes that he's still feeling the effects of the ankle injury, and it's not because he, in truth, is an average to below-average back. We're still waiting for Julius to log a 100-yard game, and nothing we saw on Sunday indicates that he's about to throw one down.


The Pear-Shaped One was on his best behavior on Sunday. No obvious explosions, no punching assistant coaches. For a change, that stuff was happening on the opposing sideline much more than on the Cowboys'. He's got a long way to go before I'm going to reinstate his "genius" title, but it was nice to see his blood pressure remain in normal range.

The Cowboys in comparison to the rest of the league

I said on Saturday that the Cowboys are very average, and I'm standing by that. I guess I'm still spoiled by the glorious days of Jimmy, when the Cowboys dominated (Ah yes, the good old days, when, if memory serves, they went 16-0 for like 4 seasons in a row. Didn't they?). This year's edition is just barely in the top half of the NFC. In this day and age, maybe that's the best we can hope for. They stay in just about every game until the 4th quarter, and are in a position to attempt to win almost every week. Perhaps that translates to the bigger picture as well - they'll make the playoffs (probably) and, once there, they'll trust that anything is possible for a veteran team with some talent. Granted, the Cowboys are not all that good, but someone please tell me who in the NFC is significantly better., um, yeah.

It's on to Washington next week. The Redskins are even more inconsistent and, frankly, I don't think they're as good as the Cowboys. However, we see every week how much that can matter - not very much at all. For God's sake, the ridiculous NY Jets beat the much-more-talented Raiders on Sunday, which pretty much proves that superior-but-inconsistent teams (the Raiders are the poster-boys for that classification) are vulnerable against anyone.

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