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Kearse on Cowboys defense: 'It's a bunch of dogs'


FRISCO, Texas — Yes, it is“just the start” for the Dallas Cowboys, having obliterated the rival New York Giants at MetLife Stadium in a 40-0 victory that could've arguably been a 50-point message. That being said, what a start it was to a 2023 season that many believe could be special, and especially if the kennel of canines in Dallas continue to feast heartily.

The defense took a moment to catch stride right out of the crates, however, with Daniel Jones rattling off several impactful runs along with a 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty by Jayron Kearse on the back end of an eight-yard run on the game-opening drive, but the defense made adjustments and took over the game from that point forward.

"We're making the statement that I've been trying to make: we're the best defense in the National Football League," said First-Team All-Pro Micah Parsons in his post-game interview.

It was the first NFL game in which Kearse wore his beloved No. 1 and, ironically, it was on the same evening when the Cowboys made their argument for being exactly that: the No. 1 defense in pro football.

For his part, Kearse viewed the opening drive as more of a gift to the Giants by the Cowboys before the subsequent onslaught that had Giants fans booing their own team before halftime — replying to the accusation that Jones and Co. ran it down the Cowboys' throats.

"They got a free 15 [yards]," said Kearse. "We gave them a free 15 and then we stood up after that. I don't feel like they drove it down our throat."

The drive ended a sequence of events that supported Kearse's (and Parsons') point.

A false start penalty against left tackle Andrew Thomas with Micah Parsons threatening made it third-and-7 on the Cowboys' side of the field. A fumbled snap by Jones on the next play — to make it fourth-and-20 — forced them into a long field goal attempt by Graham Gano.

And a blocked 45-yard field goal attempt against Gano by second-year safety Juanyeh Thomas was scooped up by newly-acquired cornerback Noah Igbinoghene for the first touchdown of the contest with less than four minutes having expired in the game.

So, yes, they stood up.

"It's just a bunch of dogs, a bunch of dogs," said Kearse. "Just a bunch of dogs. It's on film. When you turn the tape on — from the top to the bottom — we've got guys that are gonna get after it.

"I'm proud of my young guys. They showed up and showed out in primetime. They did their thing."

Speaking of primetime football, this past weekend marked the fourth consecutive season wherein the Cowboys opened a campaign with a primetime game — a total of 10 times since 2010. Needless to say, that is by far the highest mark of any club in the entire NFL.

Hate them or love them, but the Cowboys are who everyone tunes in to watch. And, on Sunday, they put on a show of historic proportions, statistically.

"We are primetime, you know?" said Kearse, echoing what he said as he walked off of the field. "We are primetime. This is us. Ever since I [joined the team in 2021], we start the year off in primetime.

"It's always us. I just wanted everybody to understand that. This is nothing new to us. This is how it's gonna be, whenever you have the Star on your helmet, so why not go out there and show out?"

And did.


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