The Dallas Cowboys Can Breathe Easy for Now
I know every Dallas fan took a big sigh of relief after seeing the 27-23 dismantling of the Houston Texans earlier today.
It was a fresh sight to see knowing that Dallas has been struggling to get out of its own way throughout the past couple weeks. While it did look good, and it's always a good thing to come away from a game with a win, the 'Boys still have a lot to work on.
It was great to see the Dallas defense finally take over a game like we were so used to seeing last season. While they finally gave up a 100 yard rusher for the first time in quite a while, they were able to really limit a lot of the passing game thanks to the constant up front pressure.
Now I don't want to give credit without making it known that Houston actually had Demarcus Ware matched up against a backup LT thanks to Duane Brown being suspended. I'm not discrediting Ware since he's one of the best LBs in the game right now, I just think that was a bonehead move on the part of Gary Kubiak and co.
The passing game looked efficient thanks to Jason Garrett finally remembering one vital part of his offense—the run game. This was a very balanced game with Dallas calling almost a complete 50/50 match of run versus pass calls. it seemed to work very well, as it left the Houston defense off balance for much of the game.
The turnovers were very sorely needed. Mike Jenkins was given a gift on the over-throw to Andre Johnson, but the other two were worked for and it was good to see them attacking the ball the way they did. This defense is capable of great things if they can stay consistent.
The problem of course, is consistency. Winning the turnover margin week in and week out will go a long way toward helping to recover this season.
I do think that there were a couple things that happened to go Dallas' way, however. Anyone else notice a larger than normal amount of players were slipping on the turf today? I'm not saying that the loss of traction was the difference maker, but it definitely made Roy Williams' second touchdown much easier when the DB slips right off the line.
When he started to play catch up, Williams was already off to the races.
Speaking of Williams, I definitely wanted to make sure he finally got some credit for his breakout game. When hit at the line, he was quick to beat the jam and never really got held up at all throughout this game. He looked much stronger, and his stride reminded me of Terrell Owens running down the field. I wouldn't expect Williams to have this type of performance every week, but a couple good games here and there definitely are welcome to compliment Dez Bryant and Miles Austin's production.
Even though all the positives, there needs to be a bit of humble pie handed out with this game.
The Cowboys still were penalized eight times for 49 yards. It's not a large amount of yards, but when those penalties can return third down plays back to first down, it needs to be addressed. It can be fixed through better and more efficient practices, as long as its properly addressed.
The secondary for the Texans are not exactly a bunch of all-stars. Coverages were soft and left receivers with much more breathing room than other defenses are going to give them. Good job to the offense exploiting their softness, but be prepared for people to continue to press you harder and harder at the line.
I am concerned with OG Kyle Kosier's knee again. I know the bye week is definitely going to help, but then the 'Boys have a 13 game stretch. I am almost certain that you're going to see that knee become an issue after a short while.
Don't be surprised if he doesn't last the entire season. The one benefit is that Montrae Holland is a capable backup of filling in. He doesn't make many dumb penalties and blocking mistakes like when Alex Barron filled in for RT Marc Columbo.
It was a good win.
Cowboy Nation can take this one and run with it through the bye week. We'll see if Dallas can return out of the bye with that same sense of urgency. One thing that definitely makes you feel good as a Dallas fan: When this team has a true sense of urgency and feels that the pressure is on, they actually are responding instead of crumbling before.
Let's see how far that takes us, because the 'Boys are not out of hot water, yet.
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