Much can be said on Sean Lee's importance to the Dallas Cowboys and how his loss will be felt.
Currently, there is a pity party. In attendance; Cowboys fans.
On the invite list are the Dallas Cowboys, but they will not be in attendance. They're choosing to go to a broom party instead and will be sweeping the New York Giants away on Sunday afternoon.
Since the fateful night at Lambeau Field that cost Wade Phillips his job, Jason Garrett (then interim head coach), has preached accountability, perseverance and mental toughness.
Sunday afternoon in Arlington, TX is the perfect place for Jason Garrett and his players to exhibit exactly what has been instilled in them.
Vegas has the Cowboys as 1.5 point favorites, but many bloggers and talking heads are not giving the Cowboys a chance.
Sean Lee is a beast and his loss will be felt.
Sean Lee lived on the field and rarely came off for defensive snaps because of his involvement in sub-packages. This role will go to the equally athletic and instinctive, Bruce Carter.
Athletically, Bruce Carter has all the tools needed to replicate the sub-package production that the Cowboys have grown accustomed to with Sean Lee. Lest anyone forgets, Bruce Carter and Sean Lee both had 1st round grades before their respective season ending injuries. They were also both drafted in the 2nd round by the Dallas Cowboys.
The New York Giants have put up plenty of points this season, and have the 2nd ranked offense in the NFL (in terms of yards allowed). The teams that have held the New York Giants to 17 points or less have beat them, and only two teams (Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles) have done that.
Which team wins Sunday?
Below is a spreadsheet detailing each of the New York Giants' opponents thus far. Each week will display the number of points allowed by the opponent and the defensive rank (in terms of yards allowed).
As you can see from the chart, the New York Giants are good at putting up points, but they have mostly faced lower tiered defenses. Yes, they put up 26 against the San Francisco 49ers, but that is the only anomaly.
The Cowboys have the defense that can, and will, stop the Giants.
Sean Lee was part of the No. 4 defense in the NFL. His production and leadership cannot be replaced or replicated, but he is still one of 11 men on the field. The secondary will continue to play lights out. The defensive line will continue to wreck havoc on both the passing and running game.
Below is another chart showing each game that the Dallas Cowboys have played, as well as the number of points they have allowed (special teams and defensive touchdowns excluded).
Although the offensive ranks of the Cowboys' opponents have not been impressive, the Dallas defense has not given up many points. They are hamstrung by an offense that should run its own game. Don't expect these Dallas Cowboys to continue making mental mental errors; Garrett will get his crew ready to roll.
These Cowboys have something to prove. Jerry Jones wrote the check and it is time for the players to cash it.