NFL Week Two is officially over. It's time to hand out the BTB game balls for the Cowboys' game against the Giants. Win or lose, each week I will virtually hand off a game ball to one player from each unit: offense, defense, special teams, and the coaching staff.
Marion Barber - His numbers were impressive: 18 carries for 124 yards and a touchdown. Even more impressive was what he meant to the offense. His vision was amazing. When there was a hole in the middle of the Giants' defensive front, he hit it hard. When the Giants would plug up the middle, he would break outside to take advantage of their lack of containment. His 26-yard reception just before halftime set up 's 47-yard field goal.
Barber was the go-to guy Sunday night. Let's hope they let his strained quad heal, so they can get him back at 100%.
Jay Ratliff - There's really no blocking this guy one-on-one. He's a beast in the middle with a great burst off the snap. Although he did give up some ground to double-teams by center, Shaun O' Hara, and one of the Giants' guards, he would employ an effective spin move to get himself back in the play.
Ratliff only had three tackles, but he clogged things up enough to help the Dallas D holdto just 58 yards on 16 carries - 31 of which came on a play to the outside where lost containment and put a nice hit on . Without that play...well, you do the math.
Nick Folk - Along with going 4-of-4 on extra points, Folk's 47-yarder just before the half was dead center. He is the kind of kicker that doesn't seem to get rattled. Had he been given a chance to win the game, he would have most likely done just that.
Frankly, this should go to the leader of the special team's units; but, there is a coaching game ball reserved for him.
Joe DeCamillis - Solid. Sure, McBriar averaged a net of 43.5 yards on his punts, and Buehler kicked half of his six kickoffs in the end zone, notching one touchback. Those guys, along with Folk, do help. But check out what Coach Joe D's coverage units did against the Giants.
On kick returns, New York averaged just 22 yards with a long of 29. On three punt returns, they turned in a measly 13 yards with a long of nine.
I also applaud his decisions on the kickoff return units. Even though Felix fumbled, he stuck with him on the next return. And his creativity on the29-yard return just before the half was also impressive. He had and loop all the way back from the left side of the field to the right, which timed out well enough to provide lead blocks for Austin.
Who gets your game balls?