With the season just a little over a week away, everyone is getting that itch for some good football action. We were fortunate enough to catch up with two guys who are all too familiar with the anticipation of opening day and all the hope that can come from starting a season anew. Former Cowboys inside linebacker Bradie James and five-time All-Pro and three-time Super Bowl Champion Jay Novacek sat down with me yesterday to talk all things Cowboys.
You'll be able to hear the interviews in their entirety during this coming Wednesday's "Cowboys Crunchtime With KD's 2013 Season Preview".
It will be a dynamic show as we will not only air the interviews, but I'll also moderate two FPW roundtables so that you can get the definitive word on the 2013 season. Just as some icing on the cake, I'll also be joined by Cowboys Insider Mike Fisher. If you only listen to one podcast this year (bad decision by you) make sure it's this coming Wednesday's.
I was able to secure the interviews with Jay and Bradie due to their involvement in the Allstate Tailgate Tour hitting the Cowboys Classic today at AT&T Stadium. They are both there today to sign autographs and participate in the halftime contest for fans while LSU and TCU square off. Here are a few of the highlights from the interviews.
Jay Novacek on Larry Allen's induction into the HOF:
"Wasn't that awesome? A great individual, incredible player.. just his strength, and quickness.. and how he played the game. As mean as he can be... and then you get him off the field and then he's a big teddy bear. He's an unreal guy, unbelievably awesome... It was just an honor to be there, sitting there, listening to Larry give his speech. The humor that he brought out.. more than anything the honesty he portrayed to everybody was just awesome."
Bradie James on Wade Phillips as a head coach:
"Nobody wants to hear about the reality... they don't care about the ugly truth. Wade treated people like men. If you were a man and just did what you were supposed to do, you loved Wade. That's just the way Wade is, how he operates. Wade taught me a lot about family, about ball, and how to balance those things. Not too many people can tell you, especially a head coach in the NFL, they won't talk about your family and football. Those guys, it's all about ball. Wade was a guy that really taught me it's more to this game than just wins. Of course winning and good times go together, but Wade taught me a lot about balancing. I love Wade."
Bradie James on what went wrong in 2010:
"We had pretty much that same team (as 2009), that same chemistry. This just went [awry]. I don't know if it was that we traveled a lot that training camp. I don't know if guys were tired going into the season, if it was too much of the same stuff that didn't stimulate everybody.. I asked Wade about that.. he said there were some things he would have changed but for the most part, sometimes.. those seasons happen."
"We stepped out there and we believed we could win every game. We weren't performing well, guys weren't playing well, guys weren't responding... we all know what happened. Wade got released in the middle of the season. That was tough, as a player, to have your commander-in-chief be undressed in front of you... but Wade being Wade, he took it on the chin and kept on moving."
Jay Novacek on the evolution of the game for tight ends:
"I think the way the offenses are now and the way the rule changes have come about in the NFL... hardly anybody can get touched coming off the line of scrimmage now. We got beat up by three, four guys before you could get in your route... and I say that to Witten how easy he has it!"
Jay and I would also touch on the difficult job Barry Switzer had, who was the hardest person to block over his career, and a very interesting game of word association in which Michael Irvin and Dr. Seuss were paired together. Can't wait for you all to hear it.