POSTGAME SCOUTING REPORT: Mackenzy Bernadeau, Tyron Smith, and rookie Travis Frederick were outstanding
Some thoughts from the radio booth at AT&T Stadium:
I am looking forward to getting back to Valley Ranch on Sunday and taking a look at this game film from Saturday night for a couple of different reasons. I am interested to see if Doug Free was better at guard in the game or did he struggle to the point that this experiment proved that he just needs to stay at right tackle.
I do know from my seat that Mackenzy Bernadeau and Tyron Smith were outstanding on the left side. There were plenty of plays where Smith, Bernadeau and rookie Travis Frederick did a great job of getting the down linemen for the Bengals turned at the point, which created lanes or cut them off so that the ball could work backside. Where this offensive line had success was in its ability to get hats on hats controlling the front. It was an impressive showing for the left side of the line, despite having just started working together on Monday. With this kind of play, it might be something these coaches would like to consider going forward, moving Ronald Leary to the right side.
As a whole, the offense was able to out-tough a defense that prides itself on being a physical one. Whether it was point-of-attack blocking by the line or the wide receivers on the edge, I really thought that they took the fight to the Bengals. These backs drove the ball hard front-side but when they saw the opportunity to cut it back, they made decisive cuts and finished the runs.
As the game wore on, in the broadcast booth, Brad Sham, Marc Colombo and I were wondering why DeMarco Murray was in the game in the second half after seeing action in the first. But what we learned from head coach Jason Garrett after the game was that Murray put the ball on the ground in the first quarter and he wanted to remind Murray how important it was for him to protect their ball. When Murray returned to the lineup, it was clear that Garrett’s message did not fall on deaf ears.
Garrett and this staff have run a tough camp. They have had physical practices and tonight their work paid off against a Bengals club that is not use to being knocked around the way they were.
Courtesy: Bryan Broaddus | Football Analyst/Scout
Join Bryan Broaddus and Ed Cahill as they discuss the Dallas Cowboys options when it comes to Doug Free in the coming weeks. (Duration – 59:56)
NFL analyst Bryan Broaddus was one of many attendees for Jason Garrett’s near-hour-long press conference at Valley Ranch yesterday. The coach discussed the new faces on his staff but the tone of the press conference centered more on the play-calling aspect with Garrett suggesting a change could occur with Bill Callahan perhaps calling the plays in 2013 but a decision hasn’t been made.
With Jason Garrett saying a decision hasn’t been made on the play-calling, do you think it’s important to get that finalized sooner than later?
Broaddus: I thought that Garrett gave an interesting answer today when he spoke about how this process has been going on for a couple of seasons now and how it continues to evolve from year to year. From my experience in the NFL, the coaches as a collective group have always put the game plans together and the play caller relies on their input throughout the week but in the game as well. I remember in Green Bay how Andy Reid, Jon Gruden and Sherman Lewis would not only get the plan together but would install it during the week but on game day, Mike Holmgren took the play card and called the plays but I also do remember times where Holmgren would get in a rut and he would let Lewis take a series or two. There were even times in the preseason where Holmgren would let Lewis or Reid call the entire game. I think you will see Garrett take the same approach this summer in training camp and allow Callahan to calls these games and they will make their adjustments from there. As long as things are ironed out before the season starts that’s all that really matters.
If Bill Callahan ends up calling the plays, what do you know about his offensive philosophy?
Broaddus: I have worked with Bill Callahan before in Philadelphia and I have known him since he was a college coach at Wisconsin. Garrett was right when he said that Bill had been exposed to several different kinds of schemes. At Wisconsin they were a tough, physical smash you in the mouth offense under Barry Alvarez. He moved on to Philadelphia where Jon Gruden was taking the West Coast approach that he learned from Bill Walsh and Mike Holmgren but also screen packages that he copied from Bob Schnelker from the Vikings but also thoughts from Paul Hackett while Gruden was at Pittsburgh as a receiver coach. There is no doubt that Callahan was most influenced by Gruden and you could see that with their teams in Oakland. Not only did they have to deal with Al Davis in his desire to get the ball down the field in the passing game but they were able to come up with a physical running game with an offensive line with size but backs like Tyrone Wheatley, Jon Ritchie and Zack Crockett that could hammer the ball at you. If Callahan in fact does get the play calling duties, I believe that you will not only see things that Jason Garrett has brought to this offense but a mixture of some of the schemes that he and Gruden had success with in Oakland.
What are your thoughts on Garrett saying part of the decision to change to a 4-3 scheme centered on the ability to learn it quickly?
Broaddus: I worked in this scheme before as a pro scout in 2000-2003 so I have a decent understand of what it takes to have some success in it. When you watched those old Buccaneers squads under Kiffin, the one thing you noticed is how much they gave you the same look with some variations but it was more about the players playing the same scheme over and over but doing it really well. Sure there were some talented defensive players for Tampa but you didn’t see their defense give up huge plays or busts in coverage. It was sound and solid, sure you saw Kiffin adjusting his fronts and creating blitzes but to generate pressure but it wasn’t to the point where it was down after down. It is a simple scheme to play front and coverage wise because you don’t line up all over the place. You play with speed and you make the offense work to have to move the ball on you. There were plenty of moving parts to Rob Ryan’s scheme but that was the way he coached and that is okay but it puts a great deal of pressure on your defense to have to make adjustments even up until the time the ball is snapped and that at times put the players in bad positions. This defense doesn’t require all the bells and whistles, it just requires you to play in coverage and run to the ball which makes it easier to play.
Courtesy: Courtesy: Bryan Broaddus | NFL Analyst/Scout
HARSH REALITY OF 8-8: Jerry Jones is looking for answers; truthful advisers key to decision-making process
When those final seconds ticked off the clock at FedEx Field, the harsh reality was that the 2012 season had come to an end. All those goals and dreams were now replaced with the thoughts of what caused the team to be in the situation that they are currently in, out of the playoffs for the second straight season. In this business, you are always looking for answers and the minute that searching for those answers stops, you are in trouble. It was a season that started with so much promise in New York but ended with a thud in our nation’s capital and now the process to figure out why starts.
As an organization you have to be truthful with the evaluation of what was successful and what you can build from but you also have to take a look at the decisions you made where you failed. I spent six years of my life working for Jerry Jones in his personnel department and there are still times even today where I felt like we didn’t help him. This general manager is relying on his coaches and scouts to provide him the best possible information to make critical choices.
In listening to him speak on Wednesday, it is very clear that his frustration level is very high right now. I have experienced that level myself and rightfully so. It is truly a bottom line business and it always will be. As an owner he does make a huge investment in the product that is on the field but as the general manager he is also responsible for that roster which is a unique situation but to a fault he is too good of a listener. He wants to hear what people he trusts has to say before he makes a decision.
My experience in this organization was that after the season, the general manager, coaches and head of the scouting department would meet and discuss the roster from top to bottom. Several days were spent reviewing players and how not only they played during the season but where they fit into next year’s plans. I always found these meetings interesting because this is where I felt like we let the general manager down. We were a 5 -11 team for three straight seasons but listening to the staff talk in this meeting, I swore we were 11 – 5.
When you misevaluate your team, you have no shot, that is reality. There are players on this team that just didn’t play well enough and the general manager wants answers why. Jerry Jones is not foolish enough to believe that injuries didn’t rob his team of some opportunities to maybe win this division outright before they went to Washington that night but he also knows everyone in this league has injuries this time of the year.
As these next few days will be spent with the coaches submitting their written and verbal reports to the front office about these players and putting that part of the evaluation to bed. Jones will then focus on the other issues he has in his mind about fundamental questions or changes that he would like to see moving forward. These meetings are generally with Stephen Jones and Jason Garrett going deeper into questions about the staff and is his expectations being met with the current group.
There has been much rumor and speculation that the club was looking to hire an offensive coordinator such as a Norv Turner to come in a coordinate the offense. There has been an insistence by Garrett to continue to call the plays for this offense which is a thought that was shared by Jones but what he has seen throughout this season is there a now a change in that thinking? This is the meeting where Jones will have to get the majority of his questions answered. He will listen to the coaches about what they feel about the players but this meeting with Jason and Stephen will be the one that gives him the ideas that he has going forward because listening to him talk, there are fundamental questions that he has in his mind and as the general manager, it’s his responsibility to ask and if he doesn’t get the answers he likes, then you will see change, how big? That’s soon to be determined.
Jerry Jones did not sound like a man that was willing to just sit here and let things run its course and hope for the best. There has to be a clear plan and focus on what needs to be done because there are going to be some decisions that are going to have to be made about this roster and potentially this coaching staff. Jones spoke of an uncomfortable feeling for the next several months at Valley Ranch and to be honest, that is not a bad thing. There needs to be a focus and a purpose going forward here but there also needs to be a truthful evaluation of what the positive points are but more importantly what is not. The next couple of weeks will shape your plans going forward when the off season has begun.
RELATED: The future of Tony Romo and offseason priorities
Football analyst Bryan Broaddus discusses pressing questions for the Dallas Cowboys as the enter the offseason … the future of quarterback Tony Romo and offseason priorities.
If you’re the GM of this team, are you trying to evaluate Tony Romo in terms of possibly replacing him, or do you learn towards the side of giving him more help?
Broaddus: I am trying to get him help. I know that might not be the most popular answer and I can understand why people are mad at him but if that is the case, you haven’t watched the whole season. I am trying to develop more weapons on the outside, I am trying to build a better offensive line so he is not running for his life every other pass. I am trying to find a way to get another back behind DeMarco Murray so when he gets hurt for six games that the offense can still run the ball. Tony Romo made some poor decisions against the Redskins but give them credit too for forcing him into some of those decisions. I have been with this team when it didn’t have a quarterback and that situation got a lot of men fired. We were not ready in 2000 when Troy Aikman moved on to the broadcast booth, with that being said, I am looking very hard at this draft and working to try and find a quarterback that can step in when that time comes but until then, I am finding him help.
As we stand right now, can you give us a position on this team that should be the highest priority to change next year?
Broaddus: I know that everyone is yelling for offensive linemen and I understand your concern but pull out you depth chart and talk to me about this defensive line. It’s the one position that has the most age to it. With age, you have players that breakdown and we are starting to see that now. You lost an outstanding player when Josh Brent’s life changed forever and he was a young guy but he is now gone. Look at Kenyon Coleman, Marcus Spears, Jay Ratliff even include Jason Hatcher. Veteran guys with wear and tear on their bodies. Behind those guys are Tyrone Crawford, Sean Lissemore and Rob Callaway who was called up from the practice squad after the accident. Crawford has a chance to develop and I have always liked Lissemore as a backup end and role player but you saw what happened when he had to play a ton of snaps. Would this defense be better if Sean Lee and Bruce Carter had bigger, younger bodies in front of them allowing them to run and make plays? I would think so. There are issues with the offensive line and I am willing to do something about that but again, look at this defensive line going forward.
Courtesy: Bryan Broaddus | Football Analyst/Scout
As a courtesy, The Boys Are Back blog wants to share the video highlights and special interviews associated with last nights Dallas Cowboys victory over the defending Super Bowl champion New York Giants. When you click on each link, the video should open in a separate window. Enjoy!
Dallas Cowboys QB Tony Romo found WR Kevin Ogletree for 114 yards and 2 TD’s as the Cowboys took down the Giants in the first game of the 2012 season, 24-17.
The Dallas Cowboys crew recaps the season opener win against the New York Giants.
Coach Jason Garrett and Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo speak after the New York Giants game.
Join Mickey Spagnola as he listens in to Jason Garrett’s postgame speech after Wednesday nights victory over the NY Giants
Presented by Volkswagen. Experience the sights and sounds of the Cowboys victory over the Giants in their season opener. If you only watch one video, watch this one! Brad Sham, the Voice of the Dallas Cowboys, captures moments unlike anyone in sports. Check it out!
Join Derek, Nick, Josh, and Blair as they breakdown last nights thrilling victory against the Giants.
Tony Romo addresses the media after the Dallas Cowboys beat the New York Giants in NFL season opener.
It’s Glory Hole Thursday! haha The Break takes a look at the Dallas Cowboys victory over the New York Giants and if the result could possibly carry over to the rest of the season.
BONUS VIDEOS: Know The Enemy – Jason Pierre-Paul and Victor Cruz
In the second portion of this weeks "Know The Enemy", Bryan Broaddus takes a look at the Giants most powerful weapon on defense
Posted: Sep 5, 2012 (posted before the game)
In the first portion of this weeks "Know The Enemy", Bryan Broaddus takes a look at one of the Giants most powerful weapons on offense
Posted Sep 4, 2012 (posted day before the game)