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Chatting about the Cowboys

ESPN has chat sessions with K.C. Joyner and Mike Golic posted. The Cowboys show up in both. We'll start with Joyner:

Q: Love your work. Anyway, how did Terence Newman do in your pass coverage grading? Where was he ranked and who was ranked the best? And what's your opinion on Newman?

Joyner: Newman really stepped it up last year. The metrics say he was 13th in yards per attempt success percentage. Aaron Glenn had a very good year last year as well, ranking 10th. I really like this Cowboys defense on a number of levels and think the Boys have a chance at going very far this year, maybe even to the Super Bowl.

I'm glad to see Newman getting some credit. For some reason, Newman is still not thought of as an elite CB except by Cowboys fans and people who study their games. The job he did on Steve Smith last year in Carolina was as fine a performance as any CB gave all season. Newman frustrated Smith so badly that he lashed out and got thrown out of the game. Now that's really taking a receiver out of the game.

Q: Where does TO rank amongst your reciever rankings? He doesn't drop many passes, piles up the YAC and TDs, and does your ranking take recievers blocking into account? Thanks

Joyner: TO didn't rank very well in the most efficient category last year due in large part to his low success percentage (tied for 49th). I think a lot of that had to do with Donovan McNabb having one of the lowest accurate pass percentages in the NFL last year. McNabb is normally accurate but he was banged up early in game #1 and simply wasn't himself at all last year.

Does this count as McNabb bashing? Maybe Owens should've included Joyner in his book as a corroborating witness.

What does Mike Golic have to say about the Boys?

Q: Hi Mike, I'm reading a lot of different analyists prediction on a wild NFC East. I'm a HUGE Cowboys fan... What are your predictions for the Cowboys in this hot division?

Golic: I think they're the best team in the division now. I think their biggest question mark is keeping Drew Bledsoe on his feet. If he can pass, they'll be successful and open up the running game, where they can be successful. It's by far the division that's made the most moves.

Hey Tuna Helper, Golic wants to join the "Keep Bledsoe Upright" campaign.

Q: Hey Mike. What is your opinion on the depth the Cowboys have at running back? Do you think Julius Jones will have a big year with the help of T.O. spreading the defense? If Julius Jones ends up facing 7 men in the box instead of 8 I think we will see several performances like Carolina last season and Seattle 2 seasons ago. When Julius is healthy he is one of the most exciting backs to watch in the NFL.

Golic: I think without a doubt. I think the passing game will help the running game. They need the openness of the passing game to open up the running game. I think Barber and Jones will be a nice 1-2 punch. But like I said before, it will hinge on the offensive line.

I'm going to use Golic as my corroborating witness; I wrote before that this year Parcells will use the passing game to set up the run, turning the old maxim of using the run to set up the pass on its head.

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