IRVING, Texas – Morris Claiborne was allowed to be the hero for roughly 24 hours. But in reviewing Sunday's win against the Rams, questions were bound to arise about the rest of his day – apart from the game-clinching interception.
Asked Monday if Claiborne's interception absolved him of several breakdowns in pass coverage – including allowing two of the Rams' three passing touchdowns – Cowboys coach Jason Garrett was fairly forthright.
"I don't know absolve is the right word. You just try to get better," Garrett said. "You evaluate the tape. You say he played 70 or so plays and you just look at it. Let's look at the stuff he did well and the stuff he didn't do quite as well."
Claiborne himself was honest about his performance in the early going of the game when reporters met him in the visitors' locker room at the Edward Jones Dome.
"I pretty much stunk it up for the first three quarters, I felt like," he said. "But we came out with a win and a big play at the end, so – be happy."
The third-year cornerback, drafted No. 6 overall in 2012 clarified himself and said he left several plays on the field in St. Louis. Aside from the touchdowns, he gave up a 38-yard completion to Kenny Britt on a play that looked awfully similar to his eventual interception.
"Mo was just in situations in yesterday's game where he was isolated by himself and they made good throws and catches against him," Garrett said. "His technique on each of those plays wasn't perfect and they had success for different reasons on each of those plays where he got beat and he just needs to continue to learn and grow and develop as a player."
Garrett did compliment Claiborne for having the mental toughness to weather the storm in St. Louis. But while Claiborne focuses on improvement, the question was bound to be asked: is he the best man for one of the top three jobs?
"It really doesn't matter where guys come from. We'll evaluate them and see who can play best," Garrett said. "We'll do that again this week and determine how we play guys all throughout our roster."
That answer was given in regard to Sterling Moore, who had a strong Week 2 effort against the Titans, but was used sparingly on Sunday afternoon. Given Claiborne's struggles, it stands to reason the Cowboys could consider using Moore more often.
Whether that will actually happen isn't something Garrett was inclined to answer on Monday.
"We'll determine how we're going to play guys as the week goes on," he said.