ARLINGTON — Dallas Cowboys fans faced Sunday night’s game against Philadelphia with excitement — but also some reservations.
With many players out hurt, the team had a high hurdle to overcome the Eagles to win the NFC East title and a pass to the playoffs.
Ron Barnes, 55, of Denton said the 8-7 record going into Sunday’s game had left him feeling lousy.
“I mean it’s just by the grace of God that we’re in a position where we might win the division,” Barnes said. “We’re lucky to be in the game.”
But he said he’ll always be there for his team.
“I mean they’re our team,” Barnes said. “I was born and raised in Texas. … Through thick and thin, I guess, and I hate the Eagles anyway.”
Eric Campos, 37, of Killeen said he came to Sunday’s game, though the season had left him frustrated, especially because of all the injuries.
The thing that keeps Campos going? Hope.
“We’re still Cowboys fans,” he said.
Elsa Rodriguez, 61, of Corpus Christi was primed to enjoy the game, regardless of the outcome, because it was her first time seeing the Cowboys in person.
But she conceded the team’s performance this season had taken a toll on her.
“The Cowboys have been nerve-racking. … So many emotions,” Rodriguez said.
Through it all, though, she has remained loyal.
“I wish they would just win them all easily, but that doesn’t happen. … They’ll still be my team,” Rodriguez said. “My whole family is Cowboys fans.”
COWBOYS PACKERS GAMEDAY GUT CHECK: Dallas Cowboys vs. Green Bay Packers | 2013-2014 NFL Game 14 of 16
IRVING, Texas – Despite falling to 7-6 and losing a share of the division lead, the Dallas Cowboys can still guarantee a spot in the playoffs by winning out, beginning with todays home matchup against the Green Bay Packers.
Once again, the Cowboys will face a team without their starting quarterback. But the Cowboys will also be without linebacker Sean Lee, among others.
Here are the gut feelings for writers Eatman, Kavner, and Helman.
Nick: I think the Cowboys beat the Packers. I didn’t need to wait on Aaron Rodgers’ status (although it does help my confidence with this pick). This is the kind of season on which the Cowboys have played close to the .500 mark all year so it’d be easy to say they lose, but at home, and with an average team coming in, give me the Cowboys. I think the defense bounces back in a big way – maybe not in terms of shutting down the Packers offense but in turnovers – I predict at least three for the defense. Miles Austin has always had good games against the Packers so I see him with a long catch and I think the Cowboys get a much-needed win that ties them for first place again. Cowboys 31-16.
Rowan: The Packers are 1-4-1 since Aaron Rodgers went out. If he were playing, my answer would probably change. But he’s not, and for that reason the Dallas Cowboys shouldn’t lose this game. They should beat a Packers team whose only win since their star quarterback went out was a one-point victory against the three-win Falcons. Much like the Cowboys, the Packers’ defense has also been struggling, though Green Bay still has offensive firepower in Jordy Nelson and Eddie Lacy, if he plays. I think both teams stick to an effective running attack early on in a relatively low-scoring first half before the points start pouring on and the teams start airing it out in the second half. Both teams reach the 30s in points, Dez Bryant goes for 100 yards for the first time in seven games, both team’s running backs reach the end zone and the Cowboys get three sacks in a four-point win.
David: Having had a few days to mull over the loss to Chicago, I feel better about the Cowboys’ chances of a win against Green Bay. You can’t overstate Aaron Rodgers’ absence, which improves the chances of a Dallas win about tenfold, even if Eddie Lacy plays. The Cowboys have also played incredibly well at AT&T Stadium this year. They’re 5-1 on the season, and the one loss was a heartbreaker to one of the best teams in the league. My guess is Jordy Nelson will be the latest receiver to give the Dallas secondary fits, as he goes for 120 or so and a touchdown. But the secondary matches up much better as a whole against this depleted Green Bay receiving corps, and I think the Cowboys will finally generate enough of a pass rush to cause some turnovers. Cowboys win by six.
It’s coming down to the wire. The fate of the 2013-2014 Dallas Cowboys season will be determined in the next four weeks. Will the ‘boys take it to the next level or will another NFC East team step up? As of today, the Dallas Cowboys must face the Chicago Bears on the road, the Green Bay Packers at home, the Washington Redskins on their turf, and close out by hosting the 7-5 Philadelphia Eagles at AT&T Stadium. The Dallas Cowboys have a shot to take the division. Do you think they will? If not, then who?
Your Comments and Shares are always welcome and appreciated.
THERE IS a great Christmas song that proclaims, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” While I love the season from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day because people are actually nice to each other and concentrate on things that are most important – family and friends – it is not the most wonderful time of the year!
That’s actually October, if you are a sports fan.
There is a plethora of football to watch, both college and pro. The baseball playoffs are in full swing, culminating with the World Series and all its tension and excitement. Hockey season has begun in earnest and the NBA launches at the end of the month.
To cite one example of how great October can be, consider if you lived in Boston. Last Sunday was a day you would never forget – unbelievable comebacks by the Patriots and Red Sox in big games. Yes, October is the most wonderful time of the year – the only month all four major sports are going on at the same time.
This year, October is even more special because tomorrow the Eagles play the Cowboys at home with first place in the NFC East at stake. Good god, I hate those Cowboys!
On Wednesday, I was on the train coming back from New York and I was sitting with my cousin Steven, a brilliant psychiatrist, his aide, Marguerite, and two rambunctious women named Sarah and Jennifer. We had a great time as they helped me create the “Top 10 Reasons I Hate the Cowboys.” Though they were my reasons, the crew helped me put them in descending order. It was great fun and I strongly recommend you do it with your friends. We share many of the same reasons, but ranking them as to which make you hate the ‘Boys the most is a hoot.
So here’s my Top 10:
10. The Star – What unbelievable conceit to make a star the symbol of your team and paint it right smack in the middle of the field. How did that star look at the end of the pickle-juice game (the 2000 season opener when the Eagles consumed pickle juice to combat dehydration from the 109-degree game-time temperature and beat the hosts, 41-14)?
9. Jimmy Johnson’s hair – Gelled and lacquered into a steel-like, immovable ‘do, and harder than those obnoxious Cowboy helmets. (I must admit to a tad of envy here.)
8. Cowboy (or AT&T) Stadium – A gaudy, incredibly extravagant mausoleum to Jerry Jones’ ego. Hey, Jerry, with Texas having the highest percentage of people without healthcare coverage of any state in the nation, couldn’t you have thought of a better use for your money?
7. Troy Aikman on TV – This ex-Cowboys QB has never gotten over the physical and scoreboard beating administered to him by the Buddy Ryan-led Birds. He takes it out on the Eagles every chance he gets with his slanted, hateful anti-Eagles commentary.
6. The “Don’t Mess With Texas” attitude – Everything is bigger and better in the Lone Star state, or so they think. Rick Perry as governor? Not so much. Cowboy Stadium is a great example of this. One thing that’s for sure: Everything is more arrogant in Texas, especially if it has anything to do with this football team!
5. Conceited, cocky, arrogant stars, past and present – Michael Irvin, Neon Deion, Tony Romo, Dez Bryant: I can’t stand any of them. (Jason Witten is an exception, but he should have been an Eagle. Remember, we picked L.J. Smith in the draft when Jason was still available.)
4. No cheesesteaks, hoagies, soft pretzels or Tastykakes are sold at Cowboy Stadium – Hard to believe, but true. I went to see the Birds play in Dallas once and sat in Ross Perot’s box. There was white wine, caviar, smoked salmon, Brie and crudités served with nary a soft pretzel to be found. They wouldn’t have lasted 5 minutes in the 700 level at the Vet!
3. Jimmy Johnson’s favorite phrase, “How ‘Bout Them Cowboys?” – I’m sick and tired of hearing it! Hey, Jimmy, how ’bout the fact that “Them Cowboys” have only won one playoff game (the dreaded “air guitar” game vs. the Birds, unfortunately) in more than a decade?
2. Jerry Jones – Need I explain? This unbelievably arrogant owner is the epitome of the conceit, braggadocio and excess that makes us hate the Cowboys.
1. “America’s Team” – Aaaaagh!! Who would have the gall to call themselves America’s Team? Who nominated them? Did we get to vote on this? This self-proclaimed title has inspired many faux fans around the nation to claim to be Cowboy rooters, but they all probably think a rollout is what you do with toilet paper and that the wildcat formation is found at the zoo.
So that’s my list. Have fun coming up with yours. To sum it up: “Cowboys suck,” and with injuries to Ware and Murray, the Birds win easily, 34-23.
Courtesy: Edward Rendell | The Daily News
Editors comment: Pretty lame article, granted. Not much creativity in Philly. After all, why remain bitter about Jimmy Johnson (and his hair) 25 years later? Seems like a “if you can’t beat ‘em … bash ‘em” mentality in the City of Brotherly Love (and resentment). Still, take a moment to vote in their poll. As you’d expect, it’s tilted towards a Philly win on Sunday. Let your voice be heard! While we’re at it … how ‘bout serving cheesesteak on Texas Toast with BBQ sauce for your gameday tailgate? Cheesesteak is basically shaved Texas beef brisket! Go Cowboys … hard pretzels, star and all!!
I don’t think it’s my imagination. It seems that there has been an increase in ACL, Achilles, and hamstring injuries in the past few years. Most concerning recently, as a Dallas Cowboys fan, is the season-ending Achilles tear suffered by DE Tyrone Crawford last week. League wide, as other teams have joined the Cowboys and Dolphins by opening training camps, there are many more of these types of injuries are reported every day or two.
After several text and voice discussions with my son, I have come to several conclusions. I believe the changes imposed by the new CBA has lead to more injuries. I say this for two reasons.
- Players must now rely on themselves or private trainers during the offseason to stay in condition
- Teams are now much more restricted (therefore, less influential) regarding offseason and in-season conditioning
I do believe the Dallas Cowboys Strength and Conditioning staffs are doing all they can within League/NFLPA’s new guidelines. I expect good arguments on both sides of this issue. Some will claim, “less is better” … others will flip the coin and side with the old school (Jimmy Johnson) philosophy of “more is better”. Ultimately, this falls on the shoulders of the players. They must be self-motivated during the offseason and work harder to stay in shape without team supervision. Surely, NFL Strength and Conditioning staffs provide players with a recommended regimen to follow during the offseason.
Since the CBA has been in place, teams are restricted to fewer ‘mandatory’ practices and team activities. The question seems to be, is this beneficial or detrimental to long-term strength and conditioning issues?
I hope to hear from fans that have expertise in this area … doctors, trainers, physical therapists, coaches, etc. to learn what is causing the increase in injuries and more importantly … what the NFL should do to reduce them in the future. Regarding hamstrings, is it largely an issue of not stretching properly? Are players not taking in enough liquids? Are shoes and artificial turf putting players at risk?
Hate to see the Dallas Cowboys go through another injury plagued season like last year. Is there something the NFL can do to decrease the odds of them occurring and recurring?
To join the discussion (and many others) or to vote in the related poll … please visit the Dallas Cowboys Fan Forum by clicking HERE. Enjoy!
The Eagles fans I’ve met personally don’t so much hate the Cowboys as it’s more of strong dislike or distaste, often simply out of peer influence. Now I’ve never been to Philly, only known out-of-state Eagles fans in New York and Virginia, so maybe I’m out of touch on this. But it’s just my experience.
The Giants are even more distant, and many seem to hate the Eagles more, especially after a 6-game losing streak to them. New York fans, in my experience, tend to be more about priding themselves about how the Cowboys supposedly “suck” than about real hatred, especially since their 2007 Super Bowl run.
Redskins fans, however, have a genuine, real hatred of the Cowboys that’s longstanding. This is helped by the fact that Washington has been 7-20 against Dallas since 1998.
Packers and Steelers fans obviously have more pressing rival teams on their minds, such as the Bears and Ravens, than the Cowboys. I threw that in there just for the sake of it.
To participate in the poll, click HERE <– Poll ended
WRITERS ROUNDTABLE: Will the Cowboys continue to average 177 yards rushing per game since DeMarco Murray became the starter?
Question: Will the Dallas Cowboys hit their average of 177.0 yards rushing per game since DeMarco Murray became the starter?
The last four weeks have been wonderful for Murray. He’s rushed for 601 yards, the most over a four-game span in franchise history. His strong running style is helped by fullback Tony Fiammetta and an offensive line starting to develop into something good.
When the Cowboys take on the Washington Redskins on Sunday afternoon, expect the run game to continue to have success. Murray is reason No. 1, but the return of running back Felix Jones will add to it. Jones averaged four yards a carry before a left high ankle sprain forced him out the next four games.
Jones is a solid runner; he’s just not as good as Murray is right now.
And that’s OK, because good running teams have multiple running backs helping in the cause. Jones helps Murray and the passing game, which is also performing well thanks to Laurent Robinson, opens the door for the run.
Sure the Redskins will have eight in the box, much like Buffalo did last Sunday. But the Redskins rank 18th against the run, allowing 120.4 yards per game. Washington has some physical players up front, but the Cowboys are doing a great job of attacking defenses.
Murray and Jones will have a solid game Sunday and keep the averages up.
But it has more to do with the Redskins’ raggedy offense than the Cowboys’ running game.
All-hype team vs. America’s team (Click on picture above to watch Video)
03:24 – Bad blood is stirring between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Dallas Cowboys. Which team will prevail this Sunday?
This question was posed to the five ESPN-Dallas/Ft. Worth Dallas Cowboy correspondents. Please read their answers and participate in the The Boys Are Back reader poll below.
Will DeMarco Murray gain 100 yards against Philadelphia’ 23rd-ranked run defense?
Jean-Jacques Taylor: Murray will break some long ones
No one in his right mind expects DeMarco Murray to have another 200-yard performance this week, but the Eagles give up so many big plays on the ground that he should eclipse 100 yards.
We’re talking about the 23rd-ranked run defense that’s allowing 4.8 yards per carry. More important, the Eagles have yielded 23 runs of 10 yards or more in just six games.
Trust me, that’s hard to do.
They’ve also yielded six runs of 20 yards or more.
The one thing Murray proved he could do in his record-setting performance against the hapless Rams and their raggedy run defense is make the big play. He had two runs of 19 yards, a 43-yarder and, of course, the 91-yard sprint to the end zone that set up his 253-yard performance.
On his 91-yard run, Murray flashed his speed and vision. Once he burst in to the secondary, he made a nifty cut on the safety and he was gone.
On the 43-yard fourth-quarter run that allowed him to break Emmitt Smith’s franchise rushing record, he ran over a defender at the line of scrimmage and zoomed into the secondary instead of being dropped for no gain.
That versatility should serve him well Sunday against the Eagles.
Bryant suffered a quadriceps injury in the season opener at the New York Jets on a punt return but with the decision to release wide receiver Dwayne Harris last week, Bryant got the nod vs. St. Louis. Bryant, Kevin Ogletree and Terence Newman worked at punt returners during last week’s practice.
“We still want to have options back there as we go forward,” coach Jason Garrett said. “Dez is actually the most reliable guy catching the ball, the most experienced guy catching punts besides being a guy who’s probably our most dangerous playmaker back there. So the combination of those things and his health led us to give him the opportunities.”
Bryant returned only one punt for 7 yards and had two fair catches. Garrett said the decision to fair catch was more of a result of the rush calls the special teams’ unit had than the team wanting Bryant to be careful.
“When he has the opportunity based on the situation and what we have on, we’ll certainly take advantage of it if he gets the right kick,” Garrett said.
POLL: Are the Dallas Cowboys making a mistake by letting Dez Bryant return punts?
Photo courtesy: JERRY LARA | SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS-NEWS
Dez Bryant told the media he would return punts this week, even though he wouldn’t clearly answer the question if he was 100 percent healthy. Do you think he should return punts against the Patriots?
RELATED ARTICLE: Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant feels great, expects to return punts
Dez Bryant didn’t have much to say Friday.
But the Cowboys receiver, on his way to the weight room, acknowledged that his bruised thigh feels great. Asked if he’s at 100 percent, Bryant replied, “you can say that.”
Bryant bruised his quadriceps in the season opener returning a punt against the New York Jets. He hasn’t returned a punt since.
That should change Sunday.
“Yeah, I’m going to do some,” Bryant said.
The Boys Are Back comment: Is this Diamond Dez expressing his desire to return punts? Is this a ploy to suck the New England Patriots in, so they’ll gameplan and spend time watching him return punts on film? Does Jason Garrett have a few special teams sets with Dez Bryant back to return, maybe early and/or late in the game?
Here we are … bored to death on the Dallas Cowboys week #4 bye. No substantive football news. So, I decided to digress … a little. The Dallas area Texas Rangers … and the Detroit Tigers have advanced to MLB’s American League Championship Series (ALCS). The timing couldn’t be worse! We’re all still reeling from the Dallas Cowboy loss to the Detroit Lions just days ago! Now … once again … Detroit is coming onto “our” turf … looking for a win! Romo can’t bounce back … Rob Ryan can’t blitz … and worst of all … Jerry Jones has his hands tied! Not even a sideline “thatta boy”, a cheering “go get ’em”, or a jersey tug can be expected this weekend from our fearless owner/general manager. Detroit, of all places, is due back in Arlington. A stones (or baseballs) throw from the house that Jerry built … Cowboys Stadium. Detroit, the Mo Town Tigers, walking on our grass … breathing our air … all of them, with a gleam in their eyes … in search of ANOTHER win on Texas soil!!! Surely, Texas pride will prevail. Right? I’m hoping for a Dirk Nowitzki’s tweet to the Texas Rangers … he’s got time. That’s just good use of the NBA Dallas Mavericks stars resources … keep them thumbs limber! Last year we had G ‘Dub and his father, the first President Bush out there … cheering on the Texas Rangers. This year, we need to pull out all of the stops! This is serious. We CAN’T let Detroit advance. It’s a matter of principle. Bring down the Texas legends … Nolan Ryan, Doak Walker, J.R. Ewing, and even Elvis (it’s on his way to Vegas from Memphis). I’m pretty sure The King is a Texas Ranger fan, and naturally he’s a fan of America’s Team … who isn’t? So. let’s get ready for another Dallas and Detroit battle. I think the Texas Rangers can take ’em down. But for God’s sake … don’t let Romo pitch in the bottom of the 9th!
Oh yes. Almost forgot. There’s a poll below. Be sure to vote!
Originally published OCT 7, 2011 … updated Oct 9, 2011 … updated Oct 12, 2011 … updated Oct 13, 2011 … updated Oct 15, 2011 … Updated October 16th, 2011.
Game 1 Detroit @ Texas Saturday, October 8 … Texas Rangers win 3-2
Game 2 Detroit @ Texas Sunday, October 10 … Texas Rangers win 7-3
Game 3 Texas @ Detroit Tuesday, October 11 … Detroit Tigers win 5-2
Game 4 Texas @ Detroit Wednesday, October 12 … Texas Rangers win 7-3
Game 5 Texas @ Detroit Thursday, October 13 Detroit Tigers win 7-5
Game 6 Detroit @ Texas Saturday, October 15 Texas Rangers win 15-5
WOW … TEXAS RANGERS WIN THE NLCS! They’re going to the World Series! I’m hoping for the St. Louis Cardinals to win the ALCS … will be the perfect matchup! My two favorite teams!
October 16th: St. Louis wins the ALCS! They’ll face the Texas Rangers in the 2011 World Series! EXCELLENT!
Four games down … twelve to-go! What grade do you give the Dallas Cowboys for the first quarter of the 2011 season? Consider all factors. New defensive coordinator with a revamped 3-4 Base defense. Young offensive line. Injury influence through the first four games. Romo and other players performance. General attitude of the club.
As always, your comments are welcome.
Apparently, saying that the Dallas Cowboys are America’s Team is more than just repeating an old-fashioned nickname.
According to the results of a recent Harris Poll, the Cowboys are the most popular team in the NFL for the fifth consecutive season. Jerry Jones’ team also topped the poll, which began monitoring favorite NFL teams in 1998, during the 1998, 1999 and 2003 seasons, and the franchise with five Super Bowl trophies has never been ranked lower than fourth.
The results were gathered from an online survey of 2,462 adults, which was conducted between September 12 and 19. Rounding out the top five this season were the Packers, Steelers, Patriots and Bears.
The results obviously show that Jones doesn’t have to win a Super Bowl, or even make the playoffs, to harbor an impressive fan base.