The 2008 Dallas Cowboys were hyped and touted as “the most talented team in the NFL.” You couldn’t turn on the television without the infinitely wise commentators on ESPN or the equally sage-like film producers on Hard Knocks proclaiming the Cowboys as the most talented team in football and eventual Super Bowl champions. Many of us, including myself, through naïveté, wishful thinking, or denial fell for the hype.
Looking back on the season, the Cowboys were talented, just not the most talented. Here’s a quick breakdown of the starters. This is just eye ball scouting at best on my part and the first thing that came to mind.
Tony Romo: a mobile quarterback that is both big play and mistake prone
Marion Barber: a bruising running back with a flair for punishing tacklers; lacks speed and vision
Deon Anderson: a versatile FB; good at everything but not great
Flozell Adams: an aging, good left tackle, hard to tell with his injuries
Kyle Kosier: a solid, diligent guard; showed his value with his injuries
Andre Gurode: a mauler; decent pass blocking; mistake prone
Leonard Davis: dominant run blocker; average pass blocker
Marc Columbo: good at run blocking, needs help with speed rushers
Jason Witten: the best TE in football; catches and blocks equally well: tough
Terrell Owens: still a top 5 receiver just check out his stats
Patrick Crayton: a slow, average 2nd receiver
Roy Williams (second half of season) a big, slow, average 2nd receiver
Chris Canty: good against the run, loses technique during games; doesn’t seem to try hard
Jay Ratliff: overachiever; non-stop motor; excellent pass rusher from NT position
Marcus Spears: average run stopper
DeMarcus Ware: the best 3-4 linebacker in football; equally rushes the passer and stops the run; yes, he’s better than Merriman.
Zach Thomas: a small ILB in a 3-4; makes the occasional play
Bradie James: good ILB in a 3-4; solid
Greg Ellis: average OLB in a 3-4; lost a step
Roy Williams: a liability run or pass
Ken Hamlin: average play this year; lousy tackling
Terrance Newman: dominant at times but injuries made him look like Jacque Reeves at other times
Anthony Henry: a big, slow corner
This is my perception of the most talented team in 2008s NFL.
I qualify this judgment based on last year’s performance and my humble opinion.