One of the side effects of being a writer here at Blogging the Boys is that you think about the Dallas Cowboys a lot. Like all the time. (You can judge for yourself if that is a good thing or really, really sad.) Sometimes it leads to a good idea for a post, or at least an effective way to get 1,000 words of content, but often the things that come to mind are too brief for that, but still worth bringing up. Like these.
All quiet on the contract negotiating front.
That's a good thing, right? We all know that the top two contracts that the Cowboys want to sort out are for Dez Bryant and DeMarco Murray, and the only thing that has really been said lately is Murray dropping repeated hints that he would much rather work out a deal to stay in Dallas, behind that All-Pro laden offensive line and with a truly potent passing attack to balance him, than seek his big paycheck elsewhere. The lack of any posturing in the media is encouraging.
Or just grasping at straws.
Was the team already distancing itself from Joseph Randle before his recent incident?
One of the questions that no one could satisfactorily answer about the Cowboys this season was: Why did they not use Randle more? He had a stellar YPC number and Murray could have probably been even more effective late in the game if he had been spelled on a series or two. While Murray may have preferred to stay out there, and the team may conceivably been trying to get as much mileage out of him as possible when it became apparent he was driving his price up with his record setting performance, having Randle a bit more seasoned just seemed prudent. You can be certain that the coaching staff didn't give a tinker's dam (that is the correct usage, trivia buffs) about him racking up individual numbers. After the Wichita fiasco, some (including other staff members here like Landon McCool) began wondering if the team already was down on Randle following his arrest for shoplifting. That thin ice he is on might have been far thinner to begin with than we might have imagined. We don't know how things were going in the locker room, and it would be really interesting to find out what his teammates really think about his knuckleheaded ways.
Do we really appreciate what a football blessing it is to have Tony Romo on the team?
One of the people I follow to glean insight from, @SigmundBloom, did a series of tweets about how many teams in the NFL are having to play completely inadequate quarterbacks. He touched on some of the quarterbacks that may be starting this year.
At least 4 are likely to start opening weekend 2015: Zach Mettenberger, Ryan Mallett, Josh McCown, Geno Smith, EJ Manuel, Brian Hoyer— Sigmund Bloom (@SigmundBloom) February 8, 2015
If we have fewer than 4 of Mett/Mallett/McCown/Geno/Manuel/Hoyer, then slot in Manziel/Sanchez/Glennon/Locker/Moore?? Allowing for 2 rooks— Sigmund Bloom (@SigmundBloom) February 8, 2015
Now tell me just how many of those names would fill you with warm fuzzies if you were a fan of their team? The NFL has a real problem as the college game has diverged from the pro style offense. With players like Tom Brady still leading Super Bowl winners, the league's teams are faced with having a very hard time finding players with NFL level tools. The growing dependence in college on quarterbacks who run as well as or better than they pass is a real handicap for scouts. And teams expect more out of high draft picks than a player who has to sit for a couple of seasons while he learns a very different kind of game. Tony Romo was a nearly miraculous find. At least the realization seems to be setting in that he was never what was holding the Cowboys back.
Why do people hate so much on Jerry World?
Clarence Hill was reflecting on the many great memories of championship teams playing at Texas Stadium, which is inarguable. But then he threw in this.
Those moments have so far eluded the $1.2 billion Jerry World cathedral in Arlington.— Clarence Hill (@clarencehilljr) February 8, 2015
You see stuff like this, much of it far harsher, about AT&T Stadium. It seems those people don't remember, or maybe just weren't around, to remember the criticism and ridicule that the stadium with the hole in the roof received when it was first opened. The glory that surrounded Texas Stadium came from the teams, not the structure. If the Cowboys can return to the level of performance of the Tom Landry and Jimmy Johnson teams, then the same kind of mystique will grow around the new building.
I never have seen a football stadium that struck me as being all that beautiful. They are all just big spaces to seat people around a football field, after all And with the spectacular video screens, AT&T Stadium does that better than just about anything else in existence. It set the bar for future development in stadiums. In its brief history, it has also brought the Dallas area a Super Bowl, an NCAA Final Four, and the inaugural College Football Playoff Championship. I don't think any of those were coming to the aging Texas Stadium. Or any of the numerous concerts and other special events that the new stadium has hosted.
It appears to be a spillover of the resentment and envy that some seem to have for the success and income that Jerry Jones and his family continue to enjoy. Jones just now seems to be coming into his own in his role as general manager, but he has always been a visionary about the business of football. His stadium was just the ultimate step in building the juggernaut that is the Dallas Cowboys, and he deserves recognition for the accomplishment of what is the premier sports and special events venue on the planet. But people gotta hate, it appears.