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Romo, defense get the Cowboys going

Tony Romo has been widely recognized as the key to this Cowboys offense, he's the one that makes this offense run. You really can't give Romo too much credit for what he has accomplished so far.

You don't have to be a Romo-sapien to believe that quarterback sensation Tony Romo has keyed the Cowboys' run to the top of the NFC East and possible Super Bowl contention.

The Cowboys are 4-1 since Romo replaced Drew Bledsoe as the starter, and he is the top-ranked quarterback in the league.


But the other side of the ball has gotten its act together recently.
The Cowboys have the league's fourth-best [defensive] unit in yards allowed and have not allowed more than 14 points in four of the last five games. They have forced nine turnovers the past three games.

Considering the Doomsday expectations of a unit that has five first-round draft picks and at least three top-shelf free-agent acquisitions, the surprise may be that it took so long.

"We are playing up to our hype," linebacker Akin Ayodele said. "It was just a matter of time. Everybody is more comfortable. Everybody is stepping up and doing their job."

Continuing on the defensive theme, I was going to write a short piece about turnovers, and how they are now going in our favor. But then I saw this morning that Brad Sham had beaten me to it.

Going into this week's work, the NFL statistics show Dallas an impressive plus-8 in turnovers, tied for fifth best in the league.

After Week 7, which was the date of Dallas' first meeting with the Giants, the Cowboys were minus-2 and in the middle of the pack.

Specifically, through six games Dallas had thrown 11 interceptions. In the last five, Romo has thrown two.

After that Week 7 Giants' game on Monday night, the Cowboys had 12 takeaways. They were ninth in the league in that category. Now, just five games later, they have 25. That's third best in the N-F-by-gosh-L. Only the great defenses in Chicago and Baltimore have taken the ball away more than Your Dallas Cowboys.

If you want to win in the NFL, win the turnover game. It's always been true.

Todd Archer covers the whole "week-to-week" aspect of the NFC. One week you're up, the next you're down. Unless, of course, you have Tony Romo as the QB, the guy who makes this offense run. Then you get a nice 3 game win streak that hopefully goes to 4.

The Giants have injuries.

"For the Cowboys it was (quarterback) Tony Romo providing a spark," Giants running back Tiki Barber said, "and for us it was a depletion of some our talent."

The Giants have 10 players listed on this week's injury report, including elite defensive ends Michael Strahan (foot) and Osi Umenyiora (hip flexor). Strahan, one of six players who didn't practice Wednesday, is listed as doubtful for Sunday's 3:15 p.m. (CST) kickoff. Umenyiora is listed as questionable along with linebacker Carlos Emmons (groin), cornerback Sam Madison (hamstring), wide receiver Sinorice Moss (quad), linebacker Brandon Short (quad), cornerback Corey Webster (toe) and safety Gibril Wilson (toe). Linebacker Antonio Pierce (knee) is probable.

Starting offensive tackle Luke Petitgout (fibula), who has been ruled out of Sunday's game, missed Wednesday's practice along with Emmons, Pierce, Strahan, Webster and Wilson.

Here's the headline for this article.

Giants' big 4 out of control in many ways

With that headline, you know you want to read the rest.