Lions vs. Cowboys: Why Detroit and Dallas Are Trending in Opposite Directions

Hal NicholsCorrespondent IOctober 2, 2011

ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 01: Ndamukong Suh #90 of the Detroit Lions sits on the sidelines against the Buffalo Bills  at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 1, 2011 in Orchard Park, New York.  (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)
Rick Stewart/Getty Images

One would think that Tony Romo would learn at some point.  But we know it hasn’t happened yet.  The Dallas QB capped another trademark crunch-time collapse today, throwing two touchdown passes in the second half to players who unfortunately don’t play on his team.

It’s becoming comical at this point. How many more times will he decide to be careless with the ball late in games they should be winning easily?   And more importantly, how much longer will Cowboys Nation put up with him? 

Meanwhile, that was a great display of heart by the Lions today.  They were down 24 points at one point, and Romo only gift-wrapped 14 of those points back to them, leaving 10 points they actually had to earn.  Detroit is a young team that has shown to be prone to getting behind early, but they have no problem digging deep and fighting to come back.

In a way, that’s what separates these two teams.  Both teams have a lot of talent on both sides of the football.  But while Detroit shows the resilience necessary to come back from a big deficit, the Cowboys appear totally unable to turn the tide when things start going downhill for them.

The Cowboys are NFL royalty.  No matter what they do or how they perform, the spotlight will be bright, and the attention level will probably be undeservedly high.  And that’s how the Cowboys play—entitled, as if they are just supposed to win because they are the Cowboys.

The Lions, on the other hand, play for a franchise that has recently been almost as unfortunate and blighted as the city in which they reside.  They have had to fight and claw for every ounce of recognition they have earned, and it shows in the way they battle back from behind.  Jim Schwartz has done a great job bringing an identity to this team.  Drafting the likes of Matt Stafford, Calvin Johnson and Ndamukong Suh in recent years hasn’t hurt, either.

Today we saw two teams heading in opposite directions play out a game just the way you might expect.  Dallas dashed out to a huge, early lead before getting sloppy and complacent as the hungry challengers, the Detroit Lions, kept pushing to get back in the game.  Ultimately, perseverance and fortitude was rewarded over mere flash and talent alone.  The Detroit Lions are a teams on the rise after spending so much time in the dark. The Dallas Cowboys, on the other hand, are just another team of comfy stars that struggles to find anyone who can stand up and turn things around when the momentum swings against them.