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Mailbag: Breakdowns In Pass Protection? Improving The Offense?

What have you guys seen on film with the offensive line? To me they don't pass protect as well as last year. As a matter of fact, in the Redskins game they seemed to totally collapse.

Bryan: I have had more of a problem with the run blocking when watching the film. The Redskins are a defense that you should be able to run the ball with some success, and they were not able to do that. The best blocked play was the McFadden touchdown run, but other than that there were defensive linemen and linebackers in the hole the entire night. This group did a better job of securing blocks last season than they have this year.

David: I'm going to go out on a limb with an unpopular opinion, but pass protection was the unit's weak spot last year, as well. The Cowboys allowed 30 sacks last year, which as ninth-best in the league – but more than they'd prefer. They're middle of the pack this year, with 25 allowed through 12 games. I think it's probably a combination of things – including starting a rookie on the line. There's no doubt the offensive line hasn't lived up to its lofty billing this year.


Being only one game out of first in the division now, and seeing how the offense played Monday Night against Washington, what are the chances that they produce more going into Green Bay against a struggling Packers team?

Bryan: Well I agree that the Packers are not the same team that we have seen in the past, but they're still a dangerous team because of the quarterback. Where you have to beat the Packers is covering their receivers. Teams that have had success against them have been able to choke off that group and make Aaron Rodgers hold the ball. Rodgers is not going to make mistakes, but he is willing to take a sack and fight for another play. Offensively you are what you are. This line needs to find more room for these backs to run. If that doesn't happen – then you lose this game because Matt Cassel is not going to beat Aaron Rodgers by himself. Dallas needs to make this a physical game and hope for the best on defense.

David: As fun as that win was on Monday, it's troubling just how bad the offense looked up until the dying minutes. The Packers' run defense isn't great, but Matt Cassel absolutely has to improve his accuracy and create some kind of passing threat if the ground game is going to get going. I'd like to see them use some more short throws to try to spread out the defense. It's criminal that the Cowboys haven't found a way to get Cole Beasley involved when Tony Romo isn't starting.

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