DAL vs NYG

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DAL vs NYG

Post by MRich on Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:24 pm

Not bad so far. Dak playing pretty well. Defense gives up a big play.

Though I'd like to actually see them convert these drives into touchdowns instead of just field goals. That's not gonna cut it.

Still a lot of game left.
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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by Cowboy1959 on Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:47 pm

Well, that was disappointing, but at least Dak proved he can play on the NFL level.  He was in no way the reason why the Cowboys lost.

If you want to lay the blame, here we go:

1. Cole Beasley dropped a high but catchable pass on the Giants' 4 that would've been a TD.  When you lose a game by 1 point, leaving 4 on the field looms large.

2.  Ezekiel Elliott is going to need to show some better running instincts.

3.  The OL is either very overrated, or it needs to start playing to its reputation.

4.  The defense wouldn't have been able to stop ME running through those holes.  Their failure to get off the field, especially in the 4-minute drill, cost this team a victory.

5.  Jason Witten no longer has escapability as a receiver.

6.  Morris Claiborne is never going to be any better than average.

7.  Dez Bryant picked up where he left off last season, which is not a good thing.  So much for blowing out of the gate in Beast Mode.

8.  Garrett still doesn't have enough game management skill to realize that Alfred Morris was having a better day than Elliott, and should've gotten more carries.

9.  Doug Free took Sunday off, by most indications.

10.  Terrence Williams is an idiot.

This was a team loss, and it wouldn't have mattered if Romo has played, in my opinion.  This team still has too many boneheaded mental lapses in game--false starts, field position confusion, time management.  That's a lot for a rookie QB making his first-ever start in the league to overcome.  Still, Dak had the Cowboys poised to win and might have had us buzzing for a whole week if Williams had better presence of mind.

All things considered, though, you have to like what the future looks like once this team gets a bit of seasoning, Elliott figures out his running lanes, and our pot-loving knuckleheads get back from suspension.  Dropping a divisional game, especially at home, hurts, but there are still 15 games left on the schedule.  Let's just hope they won't be chasing this game all season.  It would really suck if a 1-point loss on opening day makes the difference between a playoff berth and watching the tournament at home, but that's always the risk you run when you let a winnable game get away.
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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by MRich on Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:54 pm

I disagree with you slightly on the Romo thing. Dak got out of some situations I'm not sure Romo necessarily would have. There were a couple of times Dak pulled an escape act that would have made Houdini proud, and I'm not sure Romo could have pulled them off. And he didn't take "negative" yards on those plays, which gave them a better opportunity to move the ball. Romo might have been sacked on one or two of those. At least that's my opinion.

I think it's a good thing that they scored on their first four drives. I don't think it's good that three of the four were field goals.

But yeah, T. Will had terrible situational awareness there at the end. I thought Alfred Morris had a better game than Elliot did. #4 on your list looms large for me. Especially with the giants picking up large chunks of yardage on the ground.
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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by Cowboy1959 on Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:08 pm


Actually, I think we agree on the Romo thing: I don't think this team would have won if he had played, because I don't think Romo would've been able to do anything more than Dak did with the game situations that occurred. Romo's experience might have been a plus in certain situations but, as you say, his physical limitations might have made some situations worse.

As for the defense, Jones and Garrett are going to have to commit to going heavy at D in the draft, or this team will never compete at the level it needs to to be a winner.



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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by MRich on Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:17 pm

Since you put it that way, then yes, I'd have to concur.

And yes, defense is going to be a definite weakness this season, as far as I can tell.
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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by lgkehoe on Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:22 pm

Refreshing to see some balanced takes. I've spent some time on a couple of other boards this morning and I was losing faith in Cowboys fans and humanity in general.

Cole dropped a couple. There's a reason people don't get drafted. I think Cole is a great team player, but his size is inhibiting and he does not possess the all world speed that would make up for the stature. He's a tough little target for a big QB. If he is going to be the relief valve, he better become more dependable.

So the reason McFadden was not the replacement for Murray was that he was better at man blocking and could not run the zone. They wanted a RB for whom they would not have to change the blocking schemes. Yet, yesterday, they ran Zeke up the middle over and over with man blocking??? I remember only two stretch/zone reads (RB) with Zeke as the back, and they were both to the left. The staff did not maximize Zeke's opportunities.

The first Giants score came off of Scandrick one-on-one with Beckham on the outside. What defensive scheme ended up with that??? Who drew it up??? Must have been the same guy who ends up with Hitchens covering Donnell with no safety help in the end zone. I came into this season suspecting Marinelli. Nothing about yesterday's plan or schemes changed my mind. And if you cant get coverage with your down four, then send some extra help!!! Blitz every once and awhile!

Add Lance Dunbar to the idiot category. He wasted at least one more play on his not going out of bounds earlier in the drill, too.

And twice on third and long we go to Witten on the screen!?!?!?!?! Witten is either downfield or in protection in those situations. Basic, Basic, Basic stuff and our play-callers (whoever they are) are missing it.

All around, a very disappointing performance from the veterans and the coaches.

Zeke did not put the ball on the ground and did well in protection. Zak continues to look like he has a future in this league. I just hope the Cowboys don't waste his career, too.
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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by Cowboy1959 on Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:23 pm


I think the longer this game marinates, the more the coaching staff is going to be looked at as the main reason for defeat.  There were too many questionable game plan choices and, as usual, way too few in-game adjustments to deal with emerging situations.

Witten on the screen is just idiotic.  He's the slowest eligible receiver on such a play, and after watching the Cowboys execute creative and productive screens to the RBs in the preseason I find it astonishing that they never tried one to Dunbar or Elliott.

I also believe that the coaches found a way to misuse Zeke Elliott.  They only tried him outside once as I recall, and I rarely saw them run any kind of plays off tackle.  Everything looked like it was going through the center of the line, where the Cowboys were either being outmanned or outmuscled.  Notwithstanding that, it felt to me that Zeke was neither hitting holes with authority nor finding cutback lanes to squeeze through a gap.  He ran in a plodding, straightforward way that looked especially bad in contrast to Alfred Morris' more explosive style.  If this becomes a trend, we're going to regret paying that No. 4 pick when there were better options already on the roster.  Still way too early to judge this, but the coaches, the OL, and Zeke all need to be much better.

A lot of what happened, especially on offense, was typical of a day in which the coaching staff failed to use their players in a way that maximized their skills--and, in fact, often put them in situations guaranteed to fail.  The entire coaching staff has been suspect for a long time, and even considering the Jerry factor in the coaching hires the OC and DC are without question Jason Garrett guys.  This staff is as much his as Jerry's, so we're seeing what kind of organization Garrett can build.

Likewise, I don't care what anyone says, the OL is not the best unit in football.  I'm not even sure they're the best unit on the team.  Oh, there's talent there, without doubt, but this unit has underachieved mightily over the past year, and I have to think the dropoff from Callahan to Pollock has been much deeper than we were told it would be.  This is a unit to monitor, and if there isn't steady and massive improvement from now until Week 16, Garrett needs to look for a new OL coach.  It will be interesting to keep an eye on the Redskins' OL tonight to see how they look against a good Steeler defense.

Dez Bryant simply has to be better than he was yesterday.  He had his chances, and while the TD chance was a difficult one, it's a catch he's made before and the type of catch he has to make if he's going to be an elite WR.  His game has retreated since 2014, and while there are reasons for that he has to step up in Romo's absence because he is the veteran leader on the offense (even more than Witten, because as Dez goes, so goes the entire offense).  He underachieved yesterday, and if he's honest with himself he has to know that he needs to play better.  He had his opportunities yesterday, and he failed to make anything out of them.

I thought the field awareness idiocy was unique to the Cowboys, but Matthew Stafford had the same problem with his receivers yesterday on the Lions' final drive against the Colts.  Twice you could see Stafford yelling at his guys for not having gotten out of bounds in the final seconds.  Fortunately for him and the Lions, there were a few more ticks on the clock than the Cowboys had, so they were able to get into position in time for the winning FG.

Still, the Cowboys seem to lead the league in guys without field or situational awareness.  To me it's a sign of individuality vs. team orientation--too much glory-seeking and not enough sacrifice for the good of the team.  At the very least it's a sign of a team that still doesn't know how to win, and that goes back to the coaching staff.  I mean, can you imagine the Patriots' players making a crucial mistake on time remaining or field position?

I always thought it was a bit of a stretch to believe that this Cowboys team was a playoff contender, that it would pick up where it left off in 2014, because I thought that this team had too many holes to fill.  But I think it also comes down to this team never having learned the finer points of the game, nor having been instilled the necessary discipline it takes to win consistently at a high level.  And unless/until it does, we're going to watch this same game over and over and over again.


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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by lgkehoe on Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:31 pm

and over and over and over and over!
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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by lgkehoe on Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:36 pm

It's disheartening for me. I was a huge Garrett fan after Wade, in part because I was ready for Wade to be gone after 2008. Garrett's professionalism was refreshing. But now, I have to face that he is just not that football smart. There was a lot of 101 stuff missed yesterday. That is very, very discouraging. I felt like the team was on the verge of something special. And it still may be. But I now must face the reality that this coaching staff is either going to have to go, or soul search and find their inner Lombardi.
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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by MRich on Tue Sep 13, 2016 7:29 am

On the local sports talking head radio, they were talking about how the offense is "too predictable". One guy even went so far as to say if you gave him the situation and formation, he could tell you with 80% accuracy what their play would be.

Of course, what would have happened if Dallas would have gotten into FG range, and Bailey came through, giving Dallas a 22-20 win?

I think we'd still be having this discussion, but we'd be talking about how close games aren't gonna cut it.
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Re: DAL vs NYG

Post by caddy4bp on Wed Sep 14, 2016 1:50 pm

First and foremost to me, the players have to make plays! Beasley had a huge opportunity to get us kick started with what could have been a TD or put is on the 1. Has to make that play! I was surprised that the ran on man schemes as often as they did with Zeke. The blocking on his runs was pretty poor. You can say they didn't run wide, but I believe it was their DE's that were making most of their tackles on his runs. Witten's guys made 5 tackles off his attempts at blocking. Not good. I agree they had more success with Morris and why not bring him in, but if you're having Dak take most of Morris's run from under center and going with zone runs, why not for Zeke? Why were Zeke's runs from the shotgun? Those are things that didn't make sense to me.

Dak looked very good, very poised but he didn't cut a few loose down field when guys had some room. He missed going to Dez before the Williams play and that would have put them into FG position for Mr Automatic. You can blame Williams, but the defender #41, positioned himself between Williams and the sideline. I don't know that he could have gotten there, but we would have liked him to try. Just sayin!

Players have to make plays and they didn't. Dez was only doubled on 11 snaps, so there should have been more chances. Linehan I felt should have had him on the move more. To do that, you pull Beasley and put Butler in on the outside. But if Dak isn't going to rip a few into tight windows, what's Linehan to do. If he called plays that got Dez and Williams open, but Dak went underneath with the "safer" throw, then why is that on Linehan, unless those are the orders. That's where I disagree on the Romo factor, he makes those throws and the rookie played it tight to the vest. Kept them in the game, but each FG got us closer to a loss than a W. You get into the red zone you have to cash in. Romo does that and to dismiss that is a mistake, IMO. To me, this was no different than the efforts of Cassel, Weeden or Moore from last year. Tight games, mostly FG's and the D can't make a late stop and we come up short. They struggle scoring TD's instead of FG's. Until that changes we will struggle to get the W's. It was terrific to see Dak appears to have the ability to take over at some point. This is great experience, but thinking he's going to rattle off W's is a pipe dream. I'd be thrilled if he could get 2-3 wins until Romo gets back in there. For however long that lasts. I do agree that a few times, Romo would have been sacked, but I also say, that Romo would have let it rip downfield in that 15-25 yard range where Dak didn't. Romo would have changed out of plays if they were stacking the box and making them pay for their alignment. A lot to ask from a rookie! Mind you had the D gotten a stop, Dak would have ample time to get into range for Bailey. That's how close the game plan by the coaches came to being effective. The coaches didn't get beat off the snap when Collins was called for holding, causing those drives to die before they started. Have to wonder if Free's foot is giving him trouble as he wasn't able to get back to the inside to stop JPP.

Defensively, I'm sorry but the 9M tackle sadly wasn't and isn't worth that coin. McLain was pretty solid but after him, not many guys stepped up. Letting them gash them in the last few minutes was atrocious. You know they're running and you can't stop them. That's not so much on the coaches as it is the players, not doing their job. It does bring up a question and that is should we expect the talent on defense to make the plays we need? Frankly, it doesn't appear that Hitchens is stout enough at MLB? The tackles which seemed to be our strength weren't good enough at the end and you can't say they were worn out. But if you're D holds a team to 20 points, you should win the game! Just sayin!

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