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Week 4 Cowboys vs. Lions: Demarcus Ware or Calvin Johnson?

Brent PowellContributor ISeptember 30, 2011

Week 4 Cowboys vs. Lions: Demarcus Ware or Calvin Johnson?

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    The Dallas Cowboys (2-1) will face the Detroit Lions (3-0) this Sunday at 1:00 pm.  It's a big game for both teams, who each want to stay at the top of their divisions.  One of the most intriguing aspects of this game is that two of the very best players in the league will be on the field. 

    The Lions have Calvin Johnson,  a beast of a wide receiver who has six touchdowns in three games (incredible).  The Cowboys have Demarcus Ware, an unstoppable defensive end who has a league-leading five sacks this year. So who's the better player? Let's find out...

Athleticism

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    Demarcus Ware is a ridiculous physical specimen. He's 6'4", 260 lbs., and has arms that seem to never end.  He also runs a 4.5-second 40-yard dash, and recorded a 38 inch vertical leap.  That is ridiculous for any player, much less a defensive end.  Ware would win this comparison against just about any player in the league.  But there is a problem; he's being compared to Calvin Johnson. 

    The man they call "Megatron" is 6'5", 235, runs a 4.35-second 40-yard dash, and has a 43-inch vertical leap.  It's as if the football gods took Randy Moss and Terrell Owens and combined them into Calvin Johnson (minus any ego problems).  No one can guard Johnson, whether he is running a slant or going deep. 

    Winner: Calvin Johnson

Importance to the Team

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    So far this year, Calvin Johnson has been the center of the Lions offense.  Whenever quarterback Matthew Stafford is in trouble, all he needs to do is throw it up to Megatron and next thing you know, six points.  Johnson played a huge role in the Lions comeback against the Vikings last week, catching two second-half touchdowns and making a great catch to set up the game-winning field goal in overtime.

    Demarcus Ware is the heart and soul of the Cowboys defense.  His job is to get to the quarterback, and he's pretty darn good at it.  So far this year, he's made the Jets, 49ers and Redskins offensive lines look like practice squads.  Last Monday night, he made Trent Williams look like Tony Mandarich (even though Ron Jaworski complimented Williams, which I'm still trying to figure out).

    In the end, the Lions offense has a lot of other good threats in Jahvid Best, Brandon Pettigrew and Titus Young (who has shown that he can hold his own).  Demarcus Ware, on the other hand, has to create pressure in order for the Cowboys to win.  If the opposing quarterback gets a lot of time, he will pick apart the Cowboys extremely mediocre secondary.  Ware is the linchpin that holds the Cowboys defense together.

    Winner: Demarcus Ware

Threat to Opposing Teams

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    Both of these guys demand a lot of respect from the teams they face.  Megatron gives defensive coordinators nightmares, and D-Ware is the kryptonite to any team's offensive gameplan.  But which guy poses more of a threat?

    Demarcus Ware demands a double-team at all times, and when you don't double-team him, you are playing with fire.  But because the Cowboys play a 3-4 defense, it isn't that hard to double-team him because it's five offensive lineman against three defensive lineman.  So Demarcus Ware's threat to a team relies more on how Rob Ryan uses blitz schemes more than anything Ware does.

    Calvin Johnson also demands a double-team at all times.  But with Johnson, if you don't double-team him, you are risking a touchdown every time. His ability to catch any jump ball makes him almost impossible to guard one-on-one, and if you do guard him one-on-one, you better have a stud at cornerback.

    Winner: Calvin Johnson

Overall Skill

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    These two guys have shown that they are the cream of the crop in their respective positions (I'll give Andre Johnson a tie with Megatron).   Demarcus Ware is impossible to block while Calvin Johnson is impossible to guard. 

    Ware will wreak havoc on the quarterback while Johnson will give the opposing cornerback "da business."  They both are amazing, and both are unstoppable

    Winner: Push, so i put some Cowboys Cheerleaders in the photo. Because that's what you do when there's a tie. Cheerleaders.

Winner: Calvin Johnson

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    Based on the requirements given in this article, it looks like Calvin Johnson has the edge.  But in the end, it's like comparing apples and oranges. 

    If you want to tell me your opinion, feel free to leave a comment.  And in about a year expect this comparison to be between Demarcus Ware and Ndamukong Suh...

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