Ellis: Tired Of Hearing About "Predictable" D

Since camp started we've heard from just about every defensive player the problem with the unit last year was that it was too predictable.

Frankly, it seems like an unnecessary shot at former head coach and coordinator Wade Phillips, who put a system in place that was good enough the year earlier for the Cowboys to have the No. 2 defense in the league. It was the same package in 2010 as it was in 2009, as it was in 2008 and 2007.

Phillips has been in the NFL coaching defenses since the '70s, and teams didn't just figure out what he was trying to do last year.

However, the players keep wanting to use the "predictable" line, most recently Gerald Sensabaugh in his first chat with the media since re-signing with the Cowboys on Tuesday, when asked why there's reason to believe a unit consisting of mostly the same guys will be any better this year.

"Last year was a little bit predictable, I guess," Sensabaugh said. "Rob moves around a lot. Last year's defense wasn't to trick the offense. It was just more, like, we're just going to win our one-on-one battles. This defense looks like it has a little bit of trickery to it. You've got everybody lined up at the line of scrimmage and stuff like that, so it makes it harder on the quarterback. If you have the athletes to play in a system like this, you should be good to go."

Sensabaugh's words bely a harsh reality.

This Cowboys defense, with its 10 presumed starters returning, is not talented enough to simply beat an opponent, so Ryan will have to resort to plate-spinning

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