told him we were going to challenge him and put him on Moss and that's what he did."
Newman said he didn't ask for it this week. Actually, he said he stopped doing that a few years ago because he knows it hasn't been the Cowboys' scheme. Whether it was Mike Zimmer running the defense or Phillips and coordinator Brian Stewart in the current system, the Cowboys just haven't allowed cornerbacks to follow receivers all over the field.
With two weeks to prepare and knowing the importance of stopping Moss, the Cowboys made an exception.
"We played a lot of zone last year and a lot this year," Newman said. "But tonight, we just went to the man (coverage). I think that really helped because I don't think the Redskins were expecting that. Hats off to our coaches for making the switch. And I'm glad they challenged me to cover Santana. I had something to prove."
Newman proved quite a bit Sunday night.
He proved the Cowboys could indeed stop Santana Moss. He proved that playing man-to-man fits his style much better than zone. He proved he could make a game-changing play in the clutch, something his critics have questioned over the years.
More than anything, Newman took another step forward in proving, that when healthy, he indeed is one of the NFL's top cornerbacks.
Debate that last part all you want. But the Cowboys don't win this game Sunday night without Newman.