After the week one dismantling of the New York Giants, it was easy for Dallas Cowboys fans to have dreams of sugar plum fairies and Lombardi trophies filling their minds. The team looked focused, on point, and determined to get back to postseason play for the first time in three years.
Keep your head up Jason, there's still time (Matthew Emmons/ US Presswire)
And then, just like Will Smith with the flashy thing in Men in Black, the Seattle Seahawks erased all previous notions we had about this team. The offense that looked unstoppable wasn’t. The defense that played stout didn’t. The special teams…well, let’s not talk about the special teams. It’s back to the drawing board for the Dallas Cowboys.
While Garrett and Co. are at that drawing board without a moment to spare, the rest of us have a bit of time to try and digest what happened around the league this week. The Dallas Cowboys now find themselves tied for 2nd (or last, depending on your point of view) in the NFC East with the New York Giants and Washington Redskins. The Giants did their best Houdini impression and escaped a tough game against Tampa Bay that saw Eli Manning throw 3 first half picks. The Bucs couldn’t hold a double digit lead in the second half and allowed Manning to pick apart the secondary to the tune of 510 yards (!!!).
In other NFC East action, the Philadelphia Eagles pulled off their 2nd straight come from behind, 1-point victory against a much better opponent this time around, the Baltimore Ravens. It’s tough to see the Eagles struggle for about 55 minutes for the second game in a row and still come out on top. And yet, the Eagles find themselves atop the division with a hard earned 2-0 start.
Finally, the Redskins are probably the most disappointed team in the league today. They dropped a hard fought and entertaining game against a much-improved St. Louis Rams team, 31-28. RG3 continued his NFL success for the 2nd straight week, making play after play to put his team in position to win the game. Then, with just seconds left to play and the ‘Skins driving for the tying field goal, WR Josh Morgan lost his cool against the notoriously pesky Cortland Finnegan and was flagged 15 yards for throwing the ball at the STL CB. Bad timing, Josh (or great timing, again depending on your point of view). The penalty turned what would’ve been a 47-yard game tying field goal attempt into a 62-yarder. The attempt was short and wide right, and the Rams were victorious.
After two weeks of football, the Cowboy offense ranks 12th in the NFL after averaging 364.5 yards per game. While not a bad stat, it actually earns them last place honors in the NFC East, with the Eagles (1st), Giants (2nd), and Redskins (4th) all ranking ahead of them. Defensively, they have allowed an average of 22 points per game. Sean Lee leads all defensive players with 26 tackles. Clearly the defense will have to improve if they want to keep pace with the high-flying offenses within the division.
And so, not matter what happens after tonight’s Monday Night Football match up, the league will have 20 teams coming in at 1-1 after week 2. As is the mantra of Jason Garrett, the most important game of the season will be next week’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It’s impossible to go through an NFL season without adversity. The season is still young. And, as the saying goes, you can’t win a Lombardi trophy in September. But, to finish the saying, you sure can do a lot to lose it. Week 3 will be a pivotal week in deciding the direction for the 2012 version of the Dallas Cowboys.
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