Skip to main content

Cowboys Have More Than Just QB Issues

your back, that's bad. It doesn't matter if you've got Brad Johnson, Tony Romo or Vince Young back there, he's not getting away from that.  

  But then there were some simple things, too.  

  How do you get called for lining up in the neutral zone for a punt that you're not even trying to block? Jason Hatcher got called for that in the second quarter, wiping out a shank of a punt that netted the Cowboys the ball at the Giants' 42. Instead, after the re-kick, the Cowboys started the possession 18 yards back.  

  Might not seem like much, but when you only get 183 for an entire game, you've got to take every gift you can get.  

  And how about the tackling? Too many missed tackles, especially in the second half. On the Giants' two second-half touchdown runs, a 12-yarder by Brandon Jacobs in the third quarter and then Derrick Ward's 17-yard jaunt, I can't figure out which one was worse.  

  Do you take the four guys that completely whiffed on Jacobs, or the fact that no one even touched Ward on his touchdown? Not sure what cornerback Mike Jenkins saw on that play, but he didn't even make an attempt to bring down Ward.  

  "We didn't tackle well. We had a couple of series where we were thinking about the last turnover or something," head coach Wade Phillips said. "I was disappointed against the run. We played well against the pass except in the red zone, and obviously we had some missed tackles." 

  Last week against the Bucs, the Cowboys might have had their best tackling game of the season. Here we are, seven days later, and it's the exact opposite.  

  And that seems to be this team's biggest problem - consistency. One week the defense holds a team to three field goals and limits the opponent to less than 50 yards rushing. The next week, the Giants go for 200.  

  This team has problems, and it's not just injuries. You can't just bank on the fact that Romo, Felix Jones, Terence Newman and Kyle Kosier are all going to just come back in two weeks and save the day.  

  Will they help? Of course. But other than Kosier, weren't all of those guys in the game the first time the Cowboys played Washington? If this team doesn't fix all of these problems pretty quick, not only is the Super Bowl a pipe dream, and the playoffs, too, but even a winning season is going to be tough.  

  There are seven games left to play and road trips to Washington, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia remaining, not to mention another game with the Giants. At this point, nothing is a gimme.  

  That's why it is boggling that there wasn't more urgency with this game.  

  I guess not everyone can be like Witten. I mean this guy has doctors advising him that playing with his broken rib is a bad idea and he convinces the team to let him play. Was he hurting? Of course. But he wants to play, because he thinks he can help. He knows he can help. And he's not about to sit back and let this opportunity come and go without putting up a fight.  

  Not only is Witten tougher than a $2 steak, you could tell he was hurting because of more than just the rib injury.  

  Yet, while Witten said he was glad he played, although he did break his own personal streak of consecutive games (74) with a reception, you almost wish he wouldn't have. Especially if his teammates were going to play like that.  

  Because if Sunday showed us anything, it suggests the Cowboys have more than just a handful of problems.  

  Now we'll see if two weeks is enough time to fix them all.                                                                                                

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.