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My Quick Thoughts on Rams at Cowboys 2013

September 23, 2013

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(Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

  • That was as close to perfect as the Cowboys have played in quite some time.  Sure, there were a couple of miscues from some particularly uncharacteristic sources – Dan Bailey missed a chip shot FG for maybe the second time in his career, and Dwayne “Predator” Harris muffed a punt – but, as a whole, the team played a pretty dominant game on both sides of the ball.
  • DeMarco Murray absolutely loves it when the St. Louis Rams come to town, as he broke a 17-game drought of sub-100-yard games with a huge 175-yard afternoon.  It wasn’t just that the offensive line opened up holes for him (which they did), but he really seemed to be running with a greater sense of purpose and urgency.  Hopefully, he won’t wait until the Rams’ next visit to Arlington before showing that same effort again.  If he runs like this every week, the Cowboys will finally be able to break free from their string of 8-8 seasons.
  • Speaking of that offensive line, it’s no coincidence that the more Brian Waters has started to play, the better that unit has gotten.  It’s hard to believe he’s already that good, given the fact that he spent the entire 2012 season on the couch.  At his age, he probably doesn’t have many seasons left, but perhaps some of the younger guys on the OL can learn from him and continue to develop.
  • Many (myself included) were very critical of Tony Romo’s second half performance last week against the Chiefs, but there was absolutely nothing whatsoever to criticize about Romo this week.  He was extremely efficient all afternoon, throwing three TD passes, zero interceptions, and only getting sacked once.  Romo also averaged 8.8 yards per completion, after just 5.4 in Week 1 against the Giants, and 7.7 last week against the Chiefs.
  • The entire defense deserve huge kudos, especially the defensive line, which as a group has probably been the team’s most consistent unit through three games.  This is especially noteworthy, when considering all of the concerns about depth and injuries.  The DL has been very effective, despite playing without Josh Brent, Jay Ratliff and Tyrone Crawford – not to mention Anthony Spencer having missed two of the team’s three games so far.  George Selvie has been an amazing find, Jason Hatcher is playing perhaps the best football of his career, and DeMarcus Ware is, well…DeMarcus Ware.
  • This was the secondary’s best game of the season so far, thanks in part to the first career start of J. J. Wilcox, who was solid at safety.  Morris Claiborne also played very well, despite basically having one arm at this point.  But the one guy who stands out week after week is Barry Church.  He is, without a doubt, this team’s best DB – and it’s not even close.
  • It’s always an adventure when FOX’s only three-man broadcast team does a Cowboys game, and yesterday did not disappoint.  Tony Siragusa has displayed a rather questionable fashion sense over the years, but this time he hit a new low as it looked like he raided the wardrobe of Cam from “Modern Family.”  I guess we should just be thankful that it wasn’t Gloria’s closet he snuck into.
  • The only really significant negative to come out of yesterday’s game is the 873rd hamstring injury of Miles Austin’s frustratingly inconsistent career.  OK, perhaps that is a SLIGHT exaggeration, but has any other body part in DFW sports history ever been so fragile?  Maybe Roy Tarpley’s septum?
  • After three weeks, the Cowboys are all alone atop the NFC East with a 2-1 record, and are a full two games up on the two teams expected by most to vie for the division title: the Giants and Redskins, who are now a combined 0-6.  Next week’s trip to San Diego looms large, as the Chargers will be desperate to avoid falling to 1-3 on the season, and the Cowboys should be equally desperate to string together consecutive regular season wins for the first time since early last December.
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