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Monday, September 16, 2013

New Game Plan for the Cowboys Already Gone?

The Dallas Cowboys looked like a whole different team from the one we saw take down the New York Giants in week one, falling to the Kansas City Chiefs 17-16 in the home opener.  It was also the home debut for new head coach Andy Reid and quarterback Alex Smith.

The Chiefs got out to an early 7-0 lead with Smith, who had a game-high 57 rushing yards, running and passing the ball all over the place on the first drive and he eventually ended up connecting on a short TD pass to Jamaal Charles.

 No doubt about it that the Dallas defense was bringing the same type of pressure they did last week, but Smith was a little quicker to void the pocket than Eli Manning and he  just didn’t give them too many opportunites to force a turnover.  It makes one wonder how much trouble they are going to have going against RGIII and Mike Vick later on this year with the way thedefensive ends like to get up the field.  

At the same time, you have to give a lot of credit to Smith, who passed for 223 yards and two TDs, and the Chiefs who have not turned the ball over yet thru two weeks of football.  Smith was quoted after the game saying “you have to find a way to bear down.”  Their defense certainly did that in the second half against the Dallas offense, holding them to only six points after the Cowboys scored ten in the first quarter alone.

Tony Romo had an OK day going 30-42 for 298 yards and a touchdown, but also lost a fumble on a strip sack by Ron Parker.  When you add in the 4th quarter fumble by Lance Dunbar, it’s easy to say that they lost once again because they just couldn’t hang onto the football in crucial moments.

The real head scratcher was that Demarco Murray only got to carry the ball 12 times the whole game.  Last week, when they had the lead going into the 2nd half, they ran the ball down the Giants throat, which took a lot of pressure off Romo and the game plan seemed to work to the T.  Well it was the same story this week going into halftime but a different game plan after the half.  The abandonment of the run game brought added pressure on Romo and took him off of his game.  Time has shown he’s not going to be able to get it done on his own, despite his knack for playmaking.

A go ahead touchdown pass to Dwayne Bowe and a forty yard field goal by Ryan Succop put the Chiefs ahead and they never let that lead go.  Dallas did it’s best to play the comeback game in the fourth, but after three straight incompletions byRomo in KC territory, they had to settle for a field goal.

KC got a few first downs from Jamaal Charles, who was held to 55 yards on 16 carries, and a pass interference call on 3rdand 10 from Morris Claiborne all but sealed the Cowboys fate. They weren’t left with much of a shot after that because Romoand the offense got the ball back with about twelve seconds left inside their own 20.

Hats off to Dez Bryant, who had 141 yards and the only touchdown of the day, and Jason Witten, who passed Shannon Sharpe for second on the list for career catches by a tight end.

Casey Cox

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