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Clinton Portis: The man that makes the machine go

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Clinton Portis gives us fits at FedEx Field but not so much in Texas Stadium. He hasn't gained more than 52 yards in Dallas as a Redskin while he's never had less than 84 yards in Washington.

Greg Ellis doesn't want to take any chances though. He knows Portis is a huge cog in the Redskin offense.

IRVING – When the NFL schedule came out in April, Greg Ellis did a quick scan to find out when he would see Clinton Portis because, "He's going to be a mess to deal with."

Portis comes to town Sunday, and the Redskins running back is another in a line of top backs the Cowboys have seen in the season's first month.

Jim Zorn says his hatred level just isn't there yet. He needs time for the animosity to build against us. Don't worry pal. Mine is enough for the both of us.

The main point of John Clayton's article is to point out that the Redskins can make a name for themselves by winning in Texas Stadium today.

He details just how difficult that will be.

The Cowboys come in with all the confidence in the world. They rank No. 1 in offense, averaging 440 yards a game. They are outscoring opponents 32-21 on average. More than anything, though, they are playing loose and having fun. Coach Wade Phillips has set up a great environment in which this team thrives. 

Dallas' defense is aggressive and hard-hitting. The offense has confidence. Romo continues to grow as a quarterback and a leader. The running game looks unstoppable.

Still, this is a great rivalry. The Redskins know that. They just have to get one win in the next two weeks to solidify themselves as one of the four beasts in the NFC East.

Ok. Cricket is hilarious.

I know we give Romo grief for dating Jessica Simpson. But there are some things worse than dating a starlet. Don't even think about Tony. 

Bill Simmons is a huge Patriots and Celtics homer so I try not to read his columns all that much because I'm not a fan of either. But he seems to have a decent following and I appreciate his writing style (sometimes) so I check his stuff out from time to time.

This week he talks about the upcoming season and how weird it may be. Eventually, after a very, very, very long time he gets to the Cowboys, where he basically calls us the frontrunners for the Super Bowl.

THE FAVORITE

1. Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys do one thing (score points) better than anyone does anything else. Now that they have Miles Austin going as a much-needed third receiver, really, the only guy who can stop this offense is Tony Romo. What do we make of this guy? Will he ever stop self-destructing in big moments? Why does he keep forcing those "Brett Favre circa 2001-2006" throws when the Cowboys are in the red zone? And if you want to flip it around, what happens when he stops making dumb mistakes and just starts cranking out 228 mph laps with this Ferrari he's driving right now? I think we can safely say that, after three weeks, barring injuries, the 2008 NFL season rests in the hands of Jessica Simpson's boyfriend. Now that's weird.

Former Cowboy Antonio Bryant is playing well for the Bucs.

I've always thought John Madden was secretly in love with the Cowboys. In the '90s, he would go on and on about Larry Allen. It was like he couldn't get enough of the guy. He spoke in glowing terms about Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Michael Irvin too. A lot of people did but no one does man-crushes like Madden. When he likes you, he really likes you.

You can tell in his breakdown of our matchup with the Redskins that he's a big fan of Barber and Romo. Can't blame him. Me too.

The Cowboys offensively have a great combination at the running back with Marion Barber and Felix Jones.  Barber has the toughness, but don't think he can't go outside too. He will take that same play and bounce it to the outside.  He is one of the greatest finishers of running that I have seen in the NFL in a long time and Felix Jones has the speed.  If you can get a soft corner for him he is going to take it a long way.  He is just learning the offense and for any running back it is the same questions.  How does he do in pass protection and how does he do in the passing game? And for him to be able to play a lot he is going to have to get that area down and when he does the advantage is then you can save Marion Barber a little for that third and fourth quarter.  That to me is when he is really good.  When the defense starts to wear down a little and they are a half step slow, you can give the ball to Marion Barber and he will punish you and then their big offensive line just wears you down. That is what they did last Sunday night against Green Bay. 

As for Tony Romo, one of the great things about him is he has a very short memory.  He just thinks that’s part of it and you are going to have some great plays, you are going to have some average plays and you are going to have some bad plays. And you just have to have more great plays and then I think that he truly does forget about it.  They say forget about it and a guy might say he has forgotten about it but he is thinking about it all the time. But I think that Romo really does forget about it. It just goes away for him.