Christian Petersen/Getty Images
The NFC East, formerly referred to as the NFC Beast, should change it's name to the NFC Least.
A division that is normally one of the best in the NFL has been filled with mediocrity and underachievement the entire season. The dream team from Philadelphia hasn't panned out. The Redskins are who we thought they were. The Giants are 6-6, sometimes spectacular and sometimes awful.
Then there are the Cowboys. The Cowboys are one of the most talented teams in football. While they are 7-5, they could easily be 11-1. Fourth quarter meltdowns against the Jets, Lions, Patriots, and questionable clock management last week against the Cardinals have led to heartbreaking, single digit losses this season.
Tony Romo has shown signs of brilliance this year. Passing for over 3,300 yards and 22 touchdowns, Romo is putting up great numbers. The problem lies with his play in the fourth quarter. Whether it is stupidity or arrogance, Romo continues to make poor decisions and attempts difficult throws at the wrong time. There is no doubt he has the capability to play quality football late in games and he does, more often than not, get it done in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately people are remembered more for what they do wrong than what they do right.
The emergence of DeMarco Murray (872 yards) at running back has been a huge part of the Cowboys' recent success. Receiver Laurent Robinson has emerged as one of Romo's favorite targets with Miles Austin sidelined due to injury.
The defense of the Cowboys has been a bright spot this year. Led by DeMarcus Ware (15.0 sacks), the Cowboys are second in the league with 35 sacks this season. They hold opponents to just over 20 points per game. If they can stay healthy the Cowboy defense can be a definite threat to any team in the league.
The Cowboys' remaining schedule is not as easy as it looks. While they don't have a game left against a team with a winning record, three of the four games are against division rivals.
They should be able to handle the Buccaneers, but they still have games against the Eagles (who destroyed Dallas earlier this year) and two games against the Giants. Those two games will ultimately determine who wins that division.