Lou Holtz on there. From what I could make out through the swishing of his words was that he basically said he hated trick plays. Because it told the team that we're not good enough to win without them.
I can see that. Good point.
Now, about those trick plays . . . Maybe that's how the Cowboys win. And I'm not saying they're going to beat the Giants on Cory Procter's fumblerooski or a hitch-and-pitch from T.O. to Tashard Choice. But just the simple message that we're pulling out all the stops for this one could go a long way.
The Cowboys need to do everything they can to win this game. Is it a must-win? No, I don't like saying must-wins, until . . . you really must win. They could lose Sunday and go to 5-4. That doesn't mean they couldn't go 12-4 or 11-5 or 10-6. All three of those records would probably get you in the playoffs.
It's not a "must-win." It is a "must play well." They really need to be sharp against the Giants. Win or lose - play well. Execute on both sides of the ball.
Tackle well on special teams. Eliminate penalties, especially at crucial times.
But yet all of that might not result in a win. Who knows?
That's not the point. The point is to go out there and win this game, because it IS THE GAME. It's a chance at 6-3. Not sure about you guys, but when I see records like 3-1 and 4-0, or 9-3 and 8-4, all I see is a one-game difference.
But why is it that 6-3 and 5-4 seem tremendously different? If you go to 5-4, you've not only got four NFC losses, but three games behind the Giants in the loss column. That's going to make it nearly impossible to get back in the race and win the division. And that may mean no home game in the playoffs, IF you even make the playoffs.
But 6-3, having won two straight games with Brad Johnson, heading into the bye after overcoming all sorts of injuries, and doing so by beating the Giants, that would be indescribably huge.
That being said, go do it. Go win the game, with whoever you've got.
Don't feel sorry for yourselves, because the Giants surely aren't.
I hear that Giants defensive end Justin Tuck is saying he hopes the Cowboys don't make any excuses for what happens in the game.
"Everybody wants to beat everybody at their best," Tuck was quoted this week. "We don't want to have excuses like 'Romo is not playing, we didn't have this guy, we didn't have that guy.' We don't want excuses like that. But it won't change our approach. We are still going to go in there and try to sack whoever is back there."
Ok, so forgive me for reading between the lines here, but is Tuck predicting victory? Is that what that is? I can see the quote, but did he just leave out the
"When we beat them . . ." part?
If so, that's fine. He has reason to talk. I bet Mr. Tuck felt a little slighted when we all assumed the Giants would just beg Michael Strahan back out of retirement once Osi Umenyiora was lost for the year.
He has carried that Giants defense this year. Tuck has a legitimate chance to win the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year award if he keeps this up and the Giants keep doing what they're doing.
And he's right, there are no excuses. The Giants don't want to hear any. And you can bet the Cowboys won't be giving any.
They're banged up. We all know that. The Giants were banged up last year and overcame it.
Forget injuries. Forget last year and forget the second half of the season.
The next game on the schedule is indeed winnable. So the Cowboys have no other choice but to go win it.