The status quo has been pretty much maintained around here: The Cowboys get crowned as next year’s champions, then get plagued by injuries or complications. This offseason is no different from the norm.
The last two months have put Cowboys fans into a psychological meltdown, from the arrest of Dez Bryant to the spleen injury to Jason Witten.
Now, many have moved the Cowboys from contender to pretender. Though I understand the assessment, I’m not entirely sure I agree. The Cowboys have taken some heavy punches but in no way have they suffered a knockout.
The superstars of tomorrow are bred from the opportunities of today. Yes, Jason Witten, Miles Austin, Dez Bryant, Morris Claiborne and DeMarcus Ware have all experienced injuries this preseason. Yet, for all that time players missed, the Cowboys have found pleasing results from other players.
Players like James Hanna, Victor Butler, Cole Beasley, and Clifton Geathers have all demonstrated their worth when given opportunities.
Hanna now has become a viable passing option for the Cowboys given a lengthy injury to Witten. His hands and route running have exceeded expectations and he continues to impress. In addition, he is diligently working on improving his blocking ability and if he can nail that, then he becomes a very reliable tight end option when looking towards the future.
Butler has shown that he has the ability to produce as a pass-rushing specialist. This is information that we’ve already known but he seems to continually get better. If DeMarcus Ware goes down, his production won’t be matched. You can’t replace the best pass-rusher in the league, but Butler allows the Cowboys a player who can at least still make an impact at the position.
Beasley and Geathers are young players who can continue to develop into game changers. I’m not saying that these players make the impact of losing core players less substantial. However, losses do allow them to show what they have. If any of these guys displays ability, then suddenly the team is more confident and prepared during an extended absence.
As long as the Cowboys have Tony Romo they will always have a chance.
Say what you will about the gunslinger quarterback but one thing you can’t argue is his regular season success.
It is more than arguable that in Romo’s tenure with the Cowboys he has become the best quarterback in Cowboys history.
Tony has improved upon his weaknesses significantly. He is a more polished leader. He has reduced the frequency of his mistakes. Most of all, he has found a way to make all those around him better.
Romo has made players like Laurent Robinson and Patrick Crayton stars. He has an uncanny ability to make plays when they’re not there. So, why is that any different if he doesn’t have playmakers? Romo is one of the most intelligent and cognizant quarterbacks I’ve ever watched, and as long as he’s playing he’s going to win games.
It is unfortunate that Garrett catches the flack he does.
The Cowboys are known for having a win-now philosophy but you can’t judge Garrett the same. Garrett is rebuilding a culture in Dallas and it’s a winning one.
Good teams aren’t made from good players. They are made from good coaches who breed good players. Joe Flacco isn’t a good player, but John Harbaugh is a hell of a coach. Alex Smith isn’t a good quarterback but under Jim Harbaugh he had a great season.
My point is that as long the Cowboys have stable leadership and an unfaltering commitment to winning, they’ll be successful.
It’s been a long time since the Cowboys had a coach like Garrett. Garrett is a “take-no-BS” type of coach that is forcing his players to mature, compete, and produce. If they don’t, then he’ll make sure that this season is their last.
I’ve been in the military for over 6 years and when I see Garrett and the way he leads he reminds me of a military-minded leader. He’s smart, efficient and disciplined. Considering the success that’s granted similar leaders, I’d put my money on Garrett…every time.
It’s unfortunate that the Cowboys are having the significant injuries that they are having. However, I don’t think it’s a cause for great alarm. I’d actually rather get these injuries out of the way now.
The Cowboys control their destiny. They have to maintain a winning philosophy. If they can, then this situation isn’t as bad as everyone makes it seem. It might even be a blessing in disguise.
One thing I know for sure though, is that the season isn’t lost. It hasn’t even begun.