Coming into the season, I thought the Cowboys would be among the leader in the league in offense. Certainly, this looked like a team with a lot of firepower. Witten is going to the Hall of Fame and is still in his prime. Austin was a pro-bowler who thrives with a healthy Romo. Romo is in his prime and in my mind is in perhaps the greatest grove of his career over the last few weeks. Dez looks like a guy who could lead the league in receiving. And in training camp, everyone was talking up Felix, a former number one, as a potential MVP.
Then there was the emergence of Murray, who has certainly been more than anyone could have hoped for from a third round pick. Plus Robinson.
The offensive line was always a question. But it seems solid, if not dominant. Smith has been what you would hope. Free has taken a bit of a step back. Holland has been solid. Clearly, the Cowboys could use another interior lineman, however.
So why hasn't this team scored more?
More after the break.To be sure, three key injuries have taken their toll. Romo's collar bone forced the Cowboys to play very conservatively for a few games, especially with Austin out and Dez hobbled. And Austin was not only out but never really effective when he came back. Plus, the early season interceptions that resulted in two Cowboys losses seemed to crush Tony Romo's spirit for several games.
Just as Murray was getting going, a key role player in Fiamatta went out. So the running game stalled and was really abandoned in the last game.
And surely, Dez has been a disappointment. He was clearly not in shape to open the season. And his dedication to practice during the off-season was questionable and hampered by the lockout and his own shenanigans.
With all that said, how do the Cowobys only score 13 points against the Cardinals? The Cardinals for goodness sake? Why would they struggle offensively with Miami? Or with Philadelphia, a team that has been gashed.
For sure, Jason Garrett too often doesn't go vertical. Too often he nibbles on the outside, which is dangerous, rather than attacking the middle of the field or going deep and especially over the top. And there have been games where he inexplicably abandons the run.
Well, ever the optimist, I'm once again thinking that now, finally, when we have the key pieces back, the Cowboys will really light up the Giants. Dez and Austin will humiliate the secondary, which is depleted and weak. Murray will run roughshod. Plus, with the Giants offensive line woes, you can only hope that Boying, I mean Manning, will get the snot bubbling from his nose with all the hits he takes from the Cowboys' rush.
Cowboys 38. Giants 17.