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My Quick Thoughts on Cowboys at Bears 2013

December 10, 2013

(GIF originally posted to BleacherReport.com by Kyle Newport)

  • Tony Romo threw three touchdown passes with no interceptions, DeMarco Murray ran for 146 yards while averaging 8.1 yards per carry, and the Cowboys did not turn the ball over once…so they must have won easily, right?  Not even close.
  • There’s so much blame to go around that this game recap should probably be written by Tolstoy, instead of yours truly.  But while no Dallas unit or player was without fault, the defense clearly deserves the most scrutiny.  For the second time this season, the Cowboys played an entire game without forcing their opponent to punt (Denver being the other, not to mention New Orleans, who only punted once).  They also failed to generate a single Chicago turnover.  The pass rush was virtually nonexistent, multiple interceptions were dropped, and there were also several inexcusable drive-extending penalties.
  • So, what’s the root cause of the Cowboys’ defensive failings?  Is it the scheme, or their personnel?  At this point, you have to say both, as Kiffin doesn’t appear to have any answers, while the players are not getting it done.  But regardless of whether it’s the scheme, the personnel, or both, it was all put into place by the master architect: the General Manager.  He’s the one who proudly and defiantly owns that title, so he’s the one who has to be responsible for the results.  Normally, a GM would be held accountable for his results, but when he’s his own boss, that simply isn’t going to happen.
  • There are several players on defense, like George Selvie and Nick Hayden, who can’t really be criticized too severely, because they are really only playing due to a lack of roster depth exposed by key injuries/departures.  The ones who really should come under scrutiny are those who are failing to perform up to expectations.  Brandon Carr has not been playing anywhere near a level commensurate with his contract.  DeMarcus Ware is looking more and more like a shell of his former self.  Sean Lee is fantastic when healthy, but he can’t seem to stay on the field often enough to make a sustained impact.  Orlando Scandrick has been very up and down this season, but was especially down against the Bears.  The bottom line is the guys who have shown they are capable simply have to start playing better.
  • Many will point to Alshon Jeffery’s spectacular touchdown catch with 17 seconds left in the first half – which put the Bears up 24-14 – as the backbreaker, but the real turning point happened on the Cowboys’ previous possession, when Jason Witten dropped a key pass less than one minute of game time earlier.  It wouldn’t have given the Cowboys a first down, but it would have given them 2nd and short while running clock (Chicago was already out of timeouts).  Instead, Dallas ends up going three-and-out, leaving the Bears enough time to start nailing the coffin shut.
  • Witten and Dez Bryant each caught a touchdown pass, but did almost nothing else.  Dez added one other catch, but the two only combined for three catches and 22 yards on the night.  They simply have to be more productive, and the coaches absolutely must figure out a more effective way to incorporate these vital weapons into the offensive gameplan.
  • That was officially the second-coldest game in the history of the Dallas Cowboys franchise (only the legendary “Ice Bowl” was more frigid), and it will take a long, long time for the hopes of Cowboy fans to start thawing.  The bottom line is that every single person associated with this franchise – be it front office, coaching staff, or player – has to share in the blame for this abomination.  No one is above reproach right now.  It’s an epic and colossal failure in every way imaginable.  Attempting to single out any one component – such as scheme or roster depth – is foolish.  It’s ALL bad, and may not get better anytime soon.
  • Next week, the very same franchise Dallas faced in their coldest-ever game – Green Bay – comes to town.  And regardless of whether or not the Packers have Aaron Rodgers back under center, the Cowboys won’t have a chance at winning if they play like they did against the Bears.  Although the Cowboys still technically control their own “destiny,” one more loss could very well prove to be fatal, given how well the Philadelphia Eagles are rolling right now.  “Must-win” is a massive understatement.
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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Chugger permalink
    December 10, 2013 10:18 am

    Demarco Murray clearly grew up watching Franco Harris run the ball.

    I’m all out of good things to say. hmphh…

    • December 10, 2013 10:20 am

      He’s great with the stiffarm.

      Thus concludes my positive feedback, as well.

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