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Cowboys slow starts are really slow

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From an AP article on the Vikings game, I got this stat on the slow starts by the Cowboys offense.

The Cowboys haven't even gotten a first down on an opening drive since going 67 yards on 14 plays in the season opener for a field goal.

Wow. I couldn’t believe it was that bad, not even a first down. I’ve been writing about how the play calling seems to revolve around Julius Jones up the middle and standard pass attempts to either Witten or Owens. Well, I decided to do what a responsible journalist does and and look it up. Below are the ESPN play-by-play for each of our first drives on offense in game 2-6.

1st and 10 at DAL 33(14:54) J.Jones up the middle to DAL 39 for 6 yards (J.Porter).  
2nd and 4 at DAL 39(14:19) (Shotgun) T.Romo pass incomplete short right to T.Owens.  
3rd and 4 at DAL 39(14:09) T.Romo pass incomplete to T.Owens.

1st and 10 at DAL 20(12:54) T.Romo sacked at DAL 9 for -11 yards (M.Anderson).  
2nd and 21 at DAL 9(12:16) J.Jones left guard to DAL 11 for 2 yards (A.Archuleta).  
3rd and 19 at DAL 11(11:30) (Shotgun) T.Romo pass deep left to T.Owens to DAL 28 for 17 yards (C.Tillman).

St. Louis
1st and 10 at DAL 20(15:00) T.Romo pass short right to J.Witten to DAL 28 for 8 yards (C.Chavous).  
2nd and 2 at DAL 28(14:22) J.Jones left tackle to DAL 28 for no gain (B.Chillar).  
3rd and 2 at DAL 28(13:42) J.Jones right guard to DAL 29 for 1 yard (W.Witherspoon).

1st and 10 at DAL 2(10:47) J.Jones right guard to DAL 1 for -1 yards (K.Williams).  
2nd and 11 at DAL 1(10:11) J.Jones left guard to DAL 2 for 1 yard (L.Tripplett).  
3rd and 10 at DAL 2(9:31) T.Romo pass deep middle intended for J.Witten INTERCEPTED by G.Wilson at DAL 25. G.Wilson for 25 yards, TOUCHDOWN. Receiver overthrown.

New England
1st and 10 at DAL 17(14:55) T.Romo pass short middle to J.Jones to DAL 19 for 2 yards (T.Bruschi; V.Wilfork). Shuffle pass.
2nd and 8 at DAL 19(14:18) J.Jones up the middle to DAL 21 for 2 yards (T.Warren).  
3rd and 6 at DAL 21(13:35) (Shotgun) T.Romo pass incomplete short left to P.Crayton. Pass incomplete at the Dallas 26 (Gay closest defender).

Pretty standard play-calling. I hope we try something different to get ourselves in gear.

I know what’s been missing lately; the other team taking cheap shots at the Cowboys and providing bulletin-board material. From Brandon Jacobs to Joey Porter to Issac Bruce, we had great material to get hyped about. Lately, not so much. So in true sports journalism hackery, I will create something out of nothing. Here’s what Antoine Winfield had to say about T.O. this week.

"Really, he's not their No. 1 receiver," Winfield told the Pioneer Press on Wednesday regarding Owens. "(Tight end Jason) Witten is. He has all the catches and most of the touchdowns."

Bada-bing! There you go Cowboys, especially T.O., he’s calling out your manhood. He’s saying Witten is the man. You must do something about it!

Eh, not so much. He was actually saying that we have a well-balanced passing attack and that you can’t forget about Jason Witten. But taken out of context, it smells like fake bulletin-board material for the Cowboys. Hey, I’m just trying to help.

Short article on Greg Ellis’ probable return to the starting lineup and some other stuff.

Article on Tank Johnson.

Kevin Williams is one half of the Vikings run-stuffing duo at DT. Read about his battles with the double-team, here.

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