What an absolutely incredible game that was. I'm having trouble right now coming up with suitable superlatives to describe it. Work today was a blur, mostly due to the fact that my adrenaline was still pumping from last night. My upstairs neighbors probably think there's a loony living underneath them.
I haven't had a chance yet to go back and watch the game again but I wanted to convey some of my thoughts from last night now that I am in a semi-coherent state. I don't think I have ever seen a game where so much happened in such a small amount of time. so there are a number of topics I wanted to cover. Follow the jump for my quick thoughts on the Cowboys win last night over the Eagles.
- It's great to see Marc Columbo always be the first one (or at least the first non-receiver) to congratulate someone after a big play. Every single time someone scored a touchdown, made a great catch or a nice run there was Columbo in their face.
- Felix Jones is on a fast track to becoming my favorite player on the team. Now don't get me wrong, there will always be a soft spot in my heart for Romo, Owens, Barber and Ware, but Felix Jones is special. The man just flat out LOVES to play the game of football. He's one of the guys that realizes playing football for a living is a priveledge and a blessing and he is going to have some fun while he does it. His teammates love him and his attitude will have a great effect on this team, the same way Barber's does. Is there a more dynamic and explosive. yet humble and soft-spoken group of running backs anywhere else in the league?
- Speaking of running backs, a lot of folks on the blog are discouraged with the lack of playing time Jones has had so far on offense. The reason for this is simple, in my opinion: Marion Barber is reliable and Jones is unknown. He hasn't had a glaring mistake yet, but he did fumble in the preseason and had a few blocking mistakes against Cleveland. Against the Eagles, would you rather have a good blocker and reliable back in the game, or a rookie with just one NFL game under his belt? I think as the season progresses and Jones shows just how great he is then his touches will increase exponentially.
- What an absolutely dreadful rendition of the anthem last night. Just sing the song like it's been sung for a couple hundred years, and I'm sure you'll be okay. No need to go changing it now.
- Well, some of you will get your wish and get to see how the Cowboys play without Roy Williams.
- That was the loudest, most raucous crowd I have ever seen and heard at Texas Stadium. The Cowboys' crowds have always gotten a bum rap about being a bit tame, but not last night. Some players said after game that they were having trouble talking to each other on the sideline. Amazing! I cannot wait to be there in November against the 49ers.
- I know there has been a lot of complaining about the officiating last night, specifically on the pass interference call. One play that really caught my eye was the goal line screen to Westbrook, where I counted three separate holds on the Eagles. I was shocked that those were missed. On the replay I made it a point to see where the side judge was looking and as the play came towards him, his eyes went down and locked onto Westbrook's feet. He followed Westbrook all the way to the endzone and signaled touchdown. Tough to see the holds right in front of you while you're staring at the ground. Of course, there were a couple of other refs that missed those calls too.
- For some reason, some of you decided that DeMarcus Ware was having a bad night. I saw a guy giving it his all on every single play. He had some great stops in the running game and came through in the clutch with a tremendous sack when we needed it the most. I was frustrated with everyone else with the lack of pressure in the first half but I think that was more the Eagles having great protection instead of a flaw of the Cowboys. Tough to get sacks when you're rushing 4 against 7 and 8 blockers, while at the same time you don't want to break containment and let McNabb scramble for 30 yards, or let Westbrook get loose in the flat. The Eagles cause some matchup hell for defenses and it showed last night. It must be noted, however, that the Cowboys made some pretty good adjustments at halftime and found a way to get to McNabb. A couple of those sacks at the end were caused by great coverage by the secondary. For a defense that supposedly played atrociously, the Cowboys ended up with four sacks, 10 pressures and 14 QB hurries. Didn't start out well, but stepped it up when it mattered most.
- Tony Freaking Romo.
- Anyone notice who it was that came flying in and forced McNabb to overthrow Westbrook on third down in the fourth quarter? Jumping as high as he possibly can was none other than Bobby Carpenter.
- Special teams played tremendous and I'm not talking about the 98 yard kickoff return. All week long we heard how great the Eagles return men were, and with the exception of one miscue the Cowboys had great coverage all game long. The one bad coverage mistake came on the side Roy Williams normally mans and is backed up by Courtney Brown. Well Brown was inactive, so somebody was plugged into a lane they aren't too familiar with. Kevin Burnett was a monster.
- Jason Witten is a man among boys. Nothing else to say.