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Mailbag: Did Team Actually Overachieve, Given Injuries?
Am I crazy to actually feel a lot of pride for this team? I keep hearing a lot of bitter fans, but given all the injuries and the way the offensive line had issues most of the season. I feel like this team did more than it should have. Am I wrong to feel this way?
Nick: You’re actually being level-headed and not letting your frustrations cloud reality. I totally understand why fans are upset and frustrated. They should be. You should be. This team is frustrating mainly because they don’t suck. If they did, it’d be easier to accept and figure out what needs to be fixed. But the guy that struggled the most in the final game is the best guy you’ve got and the reason they had a chance to win the division and win that game. Expectations are high and they should be. But to me, I thought this was an 8-8/9-7 team back in camp. And so I’m not really surprised with how it turned out. Doesn’t sound like you are either.
Rowan: I think a fan should be proud the team didn’t fall completely flat after all the injuries they absorbed throughout the season, but it’s the way the year ended that will leave fans begging for more. The Cowboys were good enough to get to Week 17 with the playoffs still possible, and once again, they couldn’t get it done.
GREEN LAKE, WI
With the regular season over, is Dez entering the most important season of all...the offseason? How close will the organization keep tabs on him?
Nick: That’s a great question and you’re right. This is when it gets tough for him. When there isn’t as much structure in his life. During the season, he knows where to be and there is a schedule for everything. But he doesn’t have that in the offseason. Don’t forget though, the reason his case was dropped by the Dallas DA office was under a condition that he stayed out of trouble for at least a year. So that should be reason enough to stay on point. We saw him grow up a lot this year. But you’re exactly right, we’ll find out just how much he’s matured by what happens, or doesn’t happen, this offseason.
Rowan: Good point. It would be a shame for Bryant if something happened during the offseason to curtail his successful stretch at the end to the year. This is where we’ll find out just how much the budding star has matured. I’m sure the organization will stay in close contact with Bryant, but there’s no doubt there’s more time for altercations to arise in the offseason. He stayed out of trouble toward the tail end of the season, so maybe he’s realized what’s at stake. Still, I’m sure the Cowboys’ staff is holding its breath.