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Wade Phillips press conference 9/22/08

Summary of Wade Phillips' press conference today.

One injury in the game, Kyle Kosier, it's similar to the last time, he'll be out for two to three weeks. Other than that we came out healthy. Thought we played a solid game. Special teams had some big plays, especially the 65 yard punt and the post-play penalty on that, that's a 72-yard turn-around. Cover teams doing well, even with Deon Anderson out. We didn't break out on a kickoff return but it still looked good, we almost did. We need work on punt returns, we need to get him loose and give him an opportunity and for him to get a feel for the blocks.

Offense had a big game, we had a turnover in the redzone and we need to address that. You got to keep working on it. We scored quite a few points, but could do better in the redzone. Marion Barber is a brute, a force, I thought last year maybe because he was alternating that he was fresh against tired defenses, but he was fresh and strong at the end of the game. We do need to hang on to the football. He had a tremendous game, any time its third and 1 or goal line situation you just feel sure he'll make it. Felix is a great complement, he had a big play, he's a big play player. We'll continue to utilize him, he did fall down on a screen that cost us an intentional grounding call. We ran a couple of wheel routes for him but they covered it, we tried to get him deep. Marion is so strong and changes the direction of the game. It demoralizes the other team. Pounding runs for 10, 12 or 15 yards, or turns a one yard run into eight yards. Romo continues to make plays, that pass to Austin he was on the move in the pocket and hit him right in stride. Third and 20's you don't come up with but he made a TD out of it. They doubled Owens all the time, we tried to get him the ball, but we had success in other areas. On the INT they blocked him on the 4-yard line, should have been a penalty because they cut him down, but he got up and ran him down. Shows what kind of player he is. Not any bigger team play than that. Seldom see a superstar WR make that play.

Defense played well, pleased with the pressure, Rodgers was only sacked once in the first two games. We got him five times, Ellis may say we should have got more. The constant pressure of him moving and worrying about the rush bothered him. Need to work on the 2-minute defense. The week before in Philly it was a true 2-min defense, in this game we felt like it was won. But the underneath guys need to play tighter, act like its third and 7 on every play. It took a lot of time for them to get the TD, but we can do better.

The other guy that played well offensively was Tony Curtis, he played FB, blocked well and caught the ball. He made a nice catch and got open out of the backfield. We put more on him in this game, he was strong as a lead blocker, when you run the draw play the FB has to be the blocker, you saw it several times, he did a good job, the offensive line, too.

When you see the tape he showed up well.

Jay Ratliff played well, we had him for 7 tackles, 5 hurries and a sack. All over the field, amazed at how he plays, he's relentless, tries to block every FG, great effort on every play, great example of a football player. Corners played well, Anthony Henry had two sacks, he never had one before, even in high school. He ran down the QB, we did a similar thing with Nate Jones last year. Henry wasn't blitzing as a corner but from an inside position. Got sacks in the redzone, our redzone defense was very good. Pac had a good game, the long pass was not on Pacman, we were in a two-deep zone so it's not his responsibility 30-yards downfield. (Oops, I blew this one, I just called Pac out on DCFanatic's show for that play, I was wrong! Any chance of editing that tape DC?  Man, Hamlin was way out of position on that play). He tackled well, knocked the ball out and covered it. Terence Newman played better. We played some man-to-man. Did a good job on it. The QB held the ball sometimes because we ran with the receivers.

Kosier will be out 2-3 weeks. Similar to last time. Cory Procter will be back in. Montrae Holland is coming along, he's a vet. Because Kyle had been injured we kept eight linemen up for this game. We thought Montrae could play if we needed him.

Jason Witten had an outstanding game, receiving and blocking. Saw the Felix run where he blocked two guys. He did that the whole game, besides running option routes and getting open. Converted 3rd downs. We made third downs and stopped them, thought that was big.

On punt returns we have to be careful because Pac will change directions and we can't block in the back. On some we had a lane one way and he went the other way. Sometimes the lead blocker needs to carry him to the lane but sometimes he wants the freedom to run. He likes just man-on-man blocking and find the hole, but we do some wall returns and directional returns. We just need more work.

Sam Hurd was a lot closer, but still some risk if he played. So we held him out. He's closer this week. Deon Anderson won't be ready this week.

Tony Curtis is an athletic guy, he can run, blocks well, catches well. He came along slowly but we kept believing in him and he believed in himself and he's gotten better and better. We expanded his role this week and he did a good job. Strong inside from a FB position, don't expect the taller TE's to do that but he moved them out in the middle.

Miles Austin got behind Green Bay last year a couple of times and got PI's. This year is a completely different year for him, he's gained confidence, he was on his way before he got hurt. Big 3rd down catch last week. Jason Garrett had it set up for a couple of plays after half-time because they were doubling on Terrell so we could get him one on one.

It's nice that we can take what they give you, if they commit two guys to Terrell, it takes away from their run defense too. It makes them play man-to-man on other guys like Witten. We want to run the ball, it's important. We got into power running game, Marion got it going and controlled the game.

Nice thing to have (so many offensive weapons). It's a challenge to teams were playing, they don't realize what these other guys can do. The unsung guys are good players, if you just concentrate on the stars that can be trouble. It opens it up for all players. Austin is fast, although I got on him for getting caught on that one play, but he smiled and said he just needed one more week, but then he got past them on the other one so maybe just needed a few more plays. Great speed.

Nobody runs on the Dallas Cowboys, that is our saying, we feel that way. So far this year we've gotten the feeling as coaches that they won't have a big game running on us. Some of it is our philosophy. When they went 4-wide sometimes we have or front-seven still in there. Force them to pass and then come after them. When you spread it out like Green Bay, they max-protected early but it didn't get them much, then they spread it out and you can't let them stand back there and throw. We rush well with a four man rush. But on 4-wides you can't let the QB stand back there, you need to make him make a quick decision. We'll drop off sometimes, too.

Anthony Spencer is supposed to workout today. He's feeling better, we'll see.

Pat Watkins did a good job in the regular defense. They went 3 and 4-wide a lot and Pat was out in that because he also played special teams. But in the 2-back offense he did good. Courtney Brown played all the sub-packages and the sub stuff was good. We have confidence in Courtney he just needs playing time.


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