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Mailbag: Blowout Loss In Denver A Cause For Concern? Run Game Issues?
Was the Cowboys' dismal performance in all three phases against Denver a sign of things to come? Will youth in the secondary along with injuries and poor play along with a tough schedule limit this team all season? I see them finishing no better than 7-9, possibly worse. Thoughts?
Rob: Sorry, I’m not ready to call this season a failure after two games. The Cowboys nearly shut out the Giants defensively and had no problems moving the ball offensively a week ago. In Denver, they ran into a buzz saw, plain and simple. It takes special personnel to stop Dallas’ offense the way the Broncos did – very few teams have corners that good who can be left on an island all game. Defensively the tackling has to be better, for sure, and the secondary needs to get healthy. But I believe these young DB’s will get better with experience if they can stay on the field.
Bryan: I have never been a sky-is-falling guy or excuses guy. I tend to not ride the rollercoaster which I think most fans do. You look at the tape and make evaluations, good or bad. This team is talented and one of the best in the league when execution is good. When they don't, they're capable of what you saw last Sunday.
What did Denver do differently up front to stop the Dallas run game? We've seen teams stack the box before, but none with that kind of success. Was it something scheme-wise? Or did they simply take the fight to the Dallas O-Line more than the O-Line took it to them?
Rob: Denver didn’t stack the box the entire game, but they did win the line of scrimmage. On paper you might say the Giants’ front seven has more talent, but the combination of the Broncos’ commitment against the run and the Denver crowd made it a very difficult environment for the offense. I’m still surprised by the result, because we’ve seen this running game thrive on the road before. I don't expect this to become a trend.
Bryan: Dallas made some mistakes up front and the running back hit the wrong hole. For the running game to work, you can't let guys shed blocks and run free. Both happened to the offense on Sunday. Read