Among several pertinent observations of the game, one line probably sums up the whole experience.
All of the blown opportunities should make the Cowboys feel sick.
Broaddus points out some good performances, but gets honest about one of the notable issues in the game.
Last week against the Giants I felt better about how they ran the ball, but now those feeling seem so long ago.
Lance Dunbar's fumble was part of the problem with the running game.
Dunbar said he couldn't tell if the ball was out before he went down. Sounded rather dejected. Said that totally changed momentum.— Rowan Kavner (@KavnerDC) September 15, 2013
The headline kinda is the best part.
Jones didn't want to put too much blame on Bryant, even though the drop on the long pass could have changed the game.
"They all drop them, and Dez catches a lot more than he drops," Jones said. "Some of his plays had us in position to really win this ballgame.
"You can say what might have been, but Dez really played an outstanding game. You couldn't ask for more from him."
The press, of course, was focused on the bad play, which is not hard to understand.
To be clear, Bryant's drop didn't cost the Cowboys the game. There are about a dozen plays that could be considered critical turning points in the one-point loss.
This one didn't even end that drive. And it certainly didn't kill the Cowboys' comeback hopes. It happened on second down with 8:57 to go with the Cowboys trailing by four points at the time.
But the glaring mistake by Bryant, who battled back tightness in the second half, was the most memorable moment of the game. That's because of the what-coulda-been nature of the play -- maybe he stays in bounds and takes it to the house; at the minimum, the Cowboys are on the move at midfield -- and due to the fact that Bryant is a rising superstar who ranks among the most fascinating players in the NFL.
Bryant was not forgiving of himself.
Dez on his drop: "I took my eyes off of the ball. I shouldn’t have. That was a real bad mistake on my end. That is not winning football."— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) September 15, 2013
Chalk this up under the old adage "Winning isn't everything - it's the only thing."
"He's going to catch some balls ... I don't care who you put on him, he's going to catch some balls," (Andy) Reid said. "You double him up, and then you've got the other guys you have to deal with. That's what they want you to do."
The Chiefs refused to comply, stubbornly sticking with the 5-foot-9, 187-pound Brandon Flowers, even as Bryant racked up five catches for 100 yards and a touchdown by the end of the first quarter and made a handful of impressive grabs during the course of the game, including a diving stab down the sideline in the first quarter.
Well, at this point, it's hard to say he's wrong.
"I'm extremely disappointed in what I saw in Dallas," he said after the Cowboys dropped a 17-16 decision to the Chiefs. "I have a feeling we are going to see the up and down of the Cowboys. That's just the way it's going to be."
Ryan has a point, as well.
Ryan, who played four years of defensive end with the Chicago Bears in the early 1990s, laid into Tony Romo's poor passing in the fourth quarter after he said the Cowboys quarterback held the ball too long on the knock out-fumble early in the quarter.
He said Romo's "internal clock" should have told him to "unload" the football."
Maybe it was starting to wear off late?
Romo said the injury this time is not on the same side as the one he suffered against the 49ers. In the first three quarters Romo completed 22 of 27 passes but was just eight of 15 in the fourth quarter.
"We talked about it (the pain-killing shot) throughout the week, just seeing how it would feel and yeah, it got to that point," Romo said.
In his second article about the game, he wraps up with a nice, concise summary of what happened.
The more I prepared for this game against the Chiefs, the more I knew it could potentially come down to one or two plays that could make a difference in the final outcome. The Chiefs were able to force turnovers and the Cowboys were not. The Chiefs made some key plays down the stretch running the ball to kill the game and the Cowboys did not. Teams that find ways to make plays on a weekly bases, find ways to win. In Kansas City, the Cowboys learned that lesson the hard way.
It was a strange call from their own four and with sixteen seconds to play. Tony Romo offered some reasoning, but I think offensive coordinator Bill Callahan had a better answer.
"I've got to do a better job of making a better call in that situation," Callahan said.
The Cowboys almost completely ignored the running game once Dunbar fumbled the ball. However, the ground game was pretty ineffective before that. And the team does not seem to have much faith in their ability to move the ball unless they throw it.
The differences between the Cowboys' feckless ground game and Chiefs' reliable one was thrown into stark relief in the fourth quarter. Kansas City was able to exhaust minutes off the clock as Jamaal Charles ran eight times for 47 yards in the final three minutes, 48 seconds of the game. As Callahan, Murray and head coach Jason Garrett watched helplessly, they were left to rue that the Cowboys' own rushing offense was stuck in neutral.
The defensive coordinator figures it is not going to be so easy as it looked after the six thefts in the first game.
"After people watched that first game, they're going to impress on their offensive
footballteam to hold it high and tight, take care of the ball, get rid of it quick if you have to as a quarterback," he said. "You're going to coach your teams up to do that, especially if you startoff as we did last week."
Hatcher is probably putting a bit too much responsibility on the D here.
"I think we did some good things and some bad things, but we didn't play well enough to
win," Hatcher said. "It's on us. We lost the game at the end. We let them pound the ball down the field, so the defense lost the game. We'll take it. It's on us. We just have to go back on Wednesday and get better."
But he promises the team is going to be back.
I'm sorry Cowboysnation. We owe y'all a victory next week. Let's get loud like y'all were last week. We got yall. Don't worry.— Jason Hatcher (@hatcher97) September 15, 2013
I think this is probably more correct if you want to allocate blame.
The Cowboys took control of the game in the first half, led 10-7 at intermission, then came out in the third quarter with a brief but dominant show of offensive force.
But somewhere down there in the red zone, the here-we-go-again wheels started to come off. A field goal had to salvage a prime scoring opportunity, and after that it was strictly the Bad News Cowboys the rest of the way.
Am I the only one worried about these "little" injuries, given how the Cowboys tend to be too optimistic?
However, there was a scare late in the fourth quarter when defensive end DeMarcus Ware went down with a stinger to his left shoulder. Ware suffered the injury when he hit quarterback Alex Smith on a pass late in the fourth quarter.
Ware quickly left the field.
After the game, Ware described the shoulder as "shoulder stuff; I'm fine."
A reference to the "close but no cigar" poster Rod Marinelli put in Ware's locker.
Just for those who wondered how much action they saw.
Now, for one bit of good news to come out of Sunday.
Yep. Everybody else in the NFC East lost. The race for the division is still on, and hardly out of reach.
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