The Dallas Cowboys have one of the best offensive units in the entire NFL, but surprisingly it has really been their defense that has been keeping them in games here lately. This is really encouraging since the playoffs are just a few weeks away.
The defense for the Cowboys have really been playing at a high level over these last four games and I don’t think it is a coincidence that is when team captain, Barry Church, returned from his forearm injury.
Barry Church returned to the starting lineup after missing four weeks with a broken forearm against the Minnesota Vikings, a game where Dak Prescott and the offense really first started struggling. It was a hard-fought game to the bitter end, but the Cowboys managed to win 17-15 in large part due to the performance of the defense.
The following week against the New York Giants, the offense once again struggled finding their grove, but it was the defenses performance that kept the game close to begin with.
The Giants game in particular is a game Church would like to have back. He was making plays all over the field, but dropped two would be interceptions that could have possibly been game changers. Under normal circumstances, he comes down with those INT’s, but the arm brace he is wearing over his forearm seemed to get in the way.
I’m pretty sure he would like another chance at coming away with those interceptions, as well as the missed tackle that resulted in the Odell Beckham Jr. touchdown.
Fortunately though, ever since that game against the Giants, the entire team has gotten themselves back on track and has started to perform at a playoff caliber level.
Since Church’s return, the Cowboys defense has really started to come into their own. During that four-game span, Church has 38 tackles and two pass deflections, but the defense has accumulated five of their nine interceptions, five of their 11 fumble recoveries, and 14 of their 34 quarterback sacks.
I don’t think that’s a coincidence. Do you?
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that Barry Church is the sole reason why the defense for the Dallas Cowboys has started to play so well. There are 10 other players out there on the field doing their jobs as well.
Sean Lee has been simply outstanding the entire season and I don’t think anybody would argue that his presence on the field doesn’t make this team better. Also, DE/DT David Irving has put together back to back dominating performances. But, I think it’s Church’s presence back on the field that has really solidified the cohesiveness of the entire defense.
Barry Church leads the defense with two interceptions (could be four) and is second on the team with 102 tackles according to the coaches count, despite missing four games.
Whether or not Barry Church is the reason the defense is playing so well lately doesn’t really matter, but I for one belief the defense is at their best with #42 in the lineup.
Let’s just hope Barry Church and the defense continue to play the way they have been, minus the first half against the Detroit Lions, once the playoffs get underway.
Do you think Barry Church is why the defense is performing so well?
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