FLEMING ISLAND, FL
The Eagles are on a bit of a win streak, along with the NY Giants. Do you honestly feel the Cowboys can right the ship and finish atop of the division for a playoff spot, or is the more realistic finish continuing with the post season drought?
Nick: I don’t think anything is close to being finalized. This league is a rollercoaster league. Teams get hot and cold three and four times a season. So we think the Eagles are rolling now but let’s see how things shape up. And the Giants are hot, too but they really haven’t been tested by a decent offense or quarterback lately. I think it’s realistic to think the Cowboys will be 8-8, based on the last two years and the first 10 games. Will that be good enough? That’s the question.
David: It’s easy to feel like things have fallen off course, because the Cowboys got demolished the last time they played. But is anything honestly different? It’s all following a pretty familiar script. The Cowboys have shown the talent and ability to go punch-for-punch with some really good teams. They’ve also shown inconsistencies and shortcomings that have gotten them beaten – and on one occasion soundly beaten. They’re not good enough to run away with the division, but they are good enough to contend for it. So yeah. It’s a realistic hope that they’ll position themselves for a playoff spot, just like in 2011 and 2012. Whether they deliver on it is another question – one that can only be answered on the field.
Why don't the Cowboys use the hurry-up offense all the time or at least half the game? It utilizes their best weapon - Romo.
Nick: Sounds like a good plan. You’re right that it seems to be effective and yes, Romo seems to be at his best. Then again, this defense is having plenty of issues, too. Use a hurry-up offense and go three-and-out and then your banged up defense is back on the field again. But, I agree with you that it’s something the Cowboys need to utilize more. Too many times it seems like the offense is in a funk and needs something like a hurry-up to get rejuvenated. I think they should use it more.
David: For better or for worse, I think the Cowboys want to control the clock and build their offense around the effectiveness of their run game. Sometimes it works pretty well and the offense looks good, and sometimes it fails and the offense sputters. I don’t know if the hurry-up would solve all their problems, but I definitely agree that Romo is the strength of this offense. I know ball control is important, and most successful offenses have some semblance of a good ground game. But this year it seems like the offense is more concerned with limiting Romo’s penchant for mistakes than embracing his ability as a playmaker.