Archie posted his game ball series the other day. It was very well written and covered the main stars of the game. This is kind of the opposite. While we're not going to be covering the Tony Romo's, and the Kevin Ogletree's (What?!), we'll be covering the players who helped the team win in their own small role.
I'll try and make this a weekly series if it has to be. I'll likely take 4-5 players each week. Winning weeks only!
Before I get into the unsung heroes I'd like to say that the entire team played well, and that's why we won the game Wednesday night. Here are some points.
-Garrett coached the offense well. Coach Ryan has a way with words.
-The line did a solid job for not being together for a long time.
-Romo got rid of the ball quick.
-Murray is a truck, and is very crafty.
-Carr shutdown the salsa.
-Claiborne can contend with physical wide receivers. But I give him a B because Nicks was banged up. Rookie corners don't play that well most of the time. Surprised, and looking forward to the future.
Jump for the unsung heroes.
I thought there weren't going to be any big names? Well that's false. A player can get on this post even if they have a big name. Dez did what he had to do this week believe it or not. While he didn't put up the scoring plays like Kevin Ogletree, Bryant displayed number one wide receiver characteristics Wednesday night.
Dez caught four passes for 85 yards. One of his receptions got the Cowboys into the redzone, which set up their first scoring play of the season.
Bryant certainly knows his job now. He opens up the game for the Cowboys plethora of offensive weapons, as they do for him.
"If I'm going to be put out there with Tony Romo, (Jason) Witten and Miles Austin, I got to know what the hell I’m doing," Bryant said after catching four passes for 85 yards in the season opener. "I felt like I dedicated myself to do that. Not only that, I had help from Tony, I had help from Miles, Wit, the rest of the guys. I felt like it helped me out a lot and I learned a lot, and I'm going to keep it moving."
-From ESPN Dallas
I'm not an offensive line genius, but I can tell you that without the play of Ryan Cook the Cowboys might not have won that game. Cook stepped in after Phil Costa re-injured his back early in the game. With basically a new offensive line out there, the Cowboys led by their new center opened up the holes for 143 yards rushing as a team.
It wasn't an amazing effort, but it was a valiant one that got the job done.
I'm a huge fan of this guy since the Cowboys signed him. Was I the only one in my house screaming "What a block by Vickers!", on DeMarco Murray's signature run of the game?
He completely took Tuck out of the play there, and even directed Murray to the sideline after colliding with him a bit. I was impressed by Vickers. He definitely had something to do with Murray's 131 yards rushing. I like this backfield tandem already.
After the ACL injury I was really wary of the Cowboys selecting Carter in the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft. But Wednesday I saw what Cowboys management loved about him.
Carter had five tackles against the Giants, and made some stuffs at the line of scrimmage. I was very impressed overall by his play, and he's proved he deserves the starting job next to Lee.
This was probably my favorite part of our win to tell you all the truth. The secondary was excellent. Brandon Carr, Morris Claiborne, Barry Church, and friends played one heck of a game back there. Carr did well on Cruz, and if not for some illegal picks, Cruz wouldn't have had much yardage at all.
Claiborne is being rated on the rookie cornerback scale for me. I was very impressed with how he guarded Nicks. Albeit, Nicks was banged up, and hasn't really practiced much, yet no excuses for him and the Giants. Claiborne looked like he knew was he was doing out there, and my confidence in him grew to the point where I believe he can hold his own against some of the better physical wide receivers in the NFL.
I miss Alan Ball.
Okay, not really.