Spanking Will Cause Cowboys To Change

people do things.

And how does that get done?

"You take everyone, starting right here (with himself), to the woodshed," Jones said. "Everyone . . . .

"Pain, pain, pain, can create a different approach to things. You've seen a lot of bitter old men because they've seen a lot more disappointment than the young ones have seen."

That's a start, because this was an all-encompassing loss, not one that can be pinned on this guy or that guy or this unit or that unit or this December of that big game. Everyone was in this one together, beginning with breaching the trust of this head coach in his players to properly prepare mentally for a game when not asked to practice in pads even once this past week or even go through the normal walk-through practice on Saturday morning before leaving for Philly.

Now there will be some wanting to pin this on the quarterback, Tony Romo, who once again was beaten into submission - literally - since he suffered such badly damaged rib cartilage he could not step off the post-game interview podium without help and a big, deep breath in preparation for the ensuing pain. But again, he was under siege, throwing early, ducking and dodging, throwing late, throwing ill-advisedly.

That means you can implicate the offensive line, which was getting whipped and fooled far too many times, Romo sacked three times, hurried another four, driven to the ground after throws countless more times and unaccustomedly had 10 passes batted away.

So that, too, means the wide receivers weren't dong their job getting open, and judging from things, Roy Williams would be wise to limit his complaints about his perceived lack of involvement in this offense until his patterns become more precise.

Defense, sorry, no defense here for those guys, either. Certainly not as bad as 44 points looks, since the Eagles defense turned two takeaways into touchdowns with fumble returns of 73 and 96 yards for touchdowns, and two other recoveries into easy field goals.

But pressure on McNabb? Only sacked once, and hurried once, and this by the NFL's sack leaders. Coverage? Don't even ask.

Special teams? Naw, nothing special here, but then what did you expect? There was one lost fumble, one trick play bobbled they managed to recover, one kick out of bounds into a 20 mph wind to start the game that they would not be asking Nick Folk to pin deep in the left corner if they could properly cover kickoffs down the middle.

Just a lot of nothing, and seemingly less chemistry and camaraderie than even that in the end.

And so ends another season, one which began with so much promise, in abject disappointment, going from Super Bowl aspirations following a 13-3 season stuffed with a division title and top seed in the conference playoffs to being toast before New Year's Eve and no better than a third-place finish in the division.

Makes you indeed wonder if last year was the fluke, doesn't it, since this was just more of the 2005 and 2006 same.

And in the end, this team danced with its back to the wall one too many times, however this last time, unlike in those games against Tampa Bay and Washington and the Giants earlier in the season, it fell all the way through.

The "woodshed" now awaiting them on the other side.

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