IRVING, Texas – Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett spoke extensively Monday evening following his team’s season-opening win on Sunday night.
Garrett answered questions for roughly a half hour, both about the Cowboys’ performance against the Giants and the upcoming trip to play the Chiefs.
The storyline of six defensive takeaways has dominated much of the discussion of the young season since the Cowboys cemented their 36-31 victory against the Giants. Garrett said it was refreshing to see such a large point of emphasis come to fruition in live action.
“What you preach and what you practice and what you drill is not your team – it’s what shows up on Sunday,” he said.
Having acknowledged that, Garrett admitted there was plenty to work on, as the defense allowed 450 passing yards and four touchdowns to Giants quarterback Eli Manning and his receivers.
“They did make some big plays – they had six pass plays of 20 yards or more – so we have to get better in that area,” he said. “We’ll continue to work with our guys individually on that and also from a scheme standpoint – making sure our guys are standing where we want them to.”
Garrett said the Cowboys secondary needs to work on defending tighter in passing situations.
Here are a few more notes from Garrett’s Monday press conference:
- Garrett was asked about the availability of several players who missed the Giants game for Week 2 against the Chiefs. He said he had “no idea” about what to expect from defensive end Anthony Spencer, though he hopes to see Spencer practice this week.
- He also reiterated that guard Brian Waters has a strong week of work in his first days with the team, and the coaching staff will evaluate his availability going forward.
- Much was made of the Giants’ apparent practice of faking injuries in order to slow down Dallas’ no-huddle offense on Sunday. Dallas Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones addressed it following the game. Garrett addressed the issue, by saying, “Our officials do such a great job with handling all those situations, and that’s a challenge for the league,” he said. “What you have to do as an offense is just go play.”
- Garrett was asked about the Cowboys’ use of the pistol formation, which puts a running back behind the quarterback in a slight tweak of the shotgun formation. Garrett said the formation gives defenses less of an idea of what the offense plans to do with its running back. “We probably started running it about five years ago, but we’ve never used it as extensively as we did last night.”
- With eight tackles and a fumble return for a touchdown, safety Barry Church earned the Cowboys’ weekly boxing glove award, given to the game’s outstanding player.
- Regarding Dez Bryant: “He got a lot of attention from their defense, and he has to understand that’s the world he’s going to live in for the rest of his career.
Jason Garrett speaks to the media from Valley Ranch about the win over the New York Giants and upcoming game vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Coach Garrett discussed:
- Six takeaways vs. big plays given up
- OL grade vs. very good NYG defensive pressure
- Tony Romo’s injury, x-rays, and going back in to play
- Explanation of secondary in this scheme, angles, anticipated help
- Attitude of players that fight thru injuries (Romo, Claiborne, Bryant)
- Barry Church came in as free agent, impact on team, young leader
- New York Giants faking injuries to slow down no-huddle
- Player of the Game awards and recognition
- Extensive information on the ‘pistol formation’
- Lessons on last years week-1 win followed by week-2 loss
- Respecting KC’s win (vs. JAX) and Andy Reid’s track-record vs. Cowboys
- Wants more balance from OC Callahan
- Romo2Williams INT breakdown and DeMarco Murray stopping TD
- Murray’s stop vs. last years stop with Tyron Smith, allowed goal-line stand
- Dez Bryant drawing attention and respect from defenses
- Trend of No-Huddle around league, Cowboys implementing similar
- OG Brian Waters progress towards upcoming Kansas City game
- Running No-Huddle at home vs. road stadiums
- Gameday execution and relation to meetings, practices, drills, and coaching
- Continually moving playmakers into different looks and fronts
- Young starters Frederick and Leary grade vs. NYG front
- Special Teams production and Bailey’s impact with deep kickoffs
- Recent roster additions impact on Special Teams
- Harris’ playing complete game as receiver, ST tackles, and ST returns
- DeMarco Murray production running and catching the ball
- Jason Hatcher and rotation of linemen to gain experience, provide relief
- Offseason planning for week 1 vs. short prep times for remaining games
- Gameday preparation for familiar coach Andy Reid and his system
- Miles Austin rise from past and his first start vs. Kansas City few years ago
- Big school vs. small school analysis of players coming into league
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