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Not the Favorite?

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For the past couple of years I believe the cowboys have been plagued by hype.  So many people spoke of the talent that surrounded this team, and how they were destined to win, only to find themselves wrong.  As we jump head first into the last half of the offseason we see that the cowboys aren’t the team that everyone believes to win the Super Bowl, the NFC, or even the division… And I say this is good news!

With the addition of Jason Peters, LeSean McCoy, and Jeremy Maclin the eagles are predicted to be a dominant offense in the NFL this year, some people believe top 5.  This stat alone is causing people to rank the eagles in the top 5 of power rankings and to list them as the NFC East Champion.  However, there are way to many factors in this one, you are basing this projections solely on the fact that Westbrook will perform at a good level, and McNabb will be dependable.

The Giants are now the team to beat on paper, they really don’t’ have many holes, and as long as Brandon Jacobs is in the backfield you have to believe that they’ll rushing attack will be able to produce solid numbers.  They have replaced the receiver need with Hakeem Nicks and Eli Manning is poised for a good season, however, the giants have one problem to me, and that is being clutch.  The Giants deliver but they never seem to deliver when it’s needed the most.

Lastly, the Redskins who are in no shape a projected threat to the ‘Boys have upgraded with Haynesworth, but are still a bit of a mess when it comes to Quarterback, but they do have promise at receiver.  Too many questions here through.

Now for the ‘Boys, Ranked number 13 on ESPN’s pre-pre season power rankings, they have been plagued with criticism, from Romo and Williams to the Coaching Staff.  Amidst all that, I do believe the Cowboys are poised for a big season only because the distractions are gone, and I’m not only speaking about T.O. and Ellis, or Pacman Jones, but I am simply speaking of the over developed, premature, egotistical mindset that has been placed on players seasons before.  Now they are not expected to win, which allows for more focus and practice.

My prediction is that the Cowboys make a statement this season and do very well, led by a Roy Williams who also proves his worth, and a defense that can control the field.  As for the cowboys, they aren’t the favorite anymore… and that’s a good thing!



Former Sports Writer. Veteran. Serving veterans is my passion. Johns Hopkins Student. Enjoy Discussing Politics and sports!

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14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Jason

    June 6, 2009 at 7:09 pm

    BIG BLUE, THAT’S RIGHT. NEW YORK.
    hold up, I commented here for a reason, check out the link below:
    http://www.giantstalk.com/red-zone-report-662009.html

  2. Doran Palmer

    June 6, 2009 at 7:33 pm

    Ha Fucking Ha Jason … it’s okay though, we know who the real Champs are.

    Bryan, good article bro – The Cowboys have less to worry about this year as far as predictions go. I still believe the expectation at Valley Ranch is to win the show.

    I just hope the injury bug is done in Dallas for a while though. That is what really killed us last year. And to think Jason, even with more key injuries than any other team last year, we still wen’t 9-7. That loss to the E-gals sucked ass though.

  3. Jason

    June 6, 2009 at 9:11 pm

    Doran, the Cowboys are the past, history. You guys don’t have T.O. anymore. Our running game is more stacked than yours.

    I cannot wait to see the Giants in action, it’s the BIG BLUE WRECKING CREW.

    When was the last time you guys won a Super Bowl, 1995? I remember Super Bowl XLII like it was yesterday.

  4. Doran Palmer

    June 6, 2009 at 11:11 pm

    Oh come on Jason, is that the best you got? You posted the same comment to two different responses.

    Okay, so it’s been a while since our last SB and only a couple of years since the Gnats won one. We still have more, many more.

    Really, the only team that can dispute our status as America’s Team, so labeled by America itself, is the Stealers … they at least have more SBs than us. But I understand, you’re a Gnats fan, you’re supposed to talk good about your team and bad about the ‘Boys. I feel for ya bro

  5. Jason

    June 7, 2009 at 6:45 am

    We are only a couple of Super Bowls behind you. We will pick one up this year. How is it going to feel losing your first home regular season game at the new stadium?

    • bags030404

      June 7, 2009 at 11:17 am

      You talk big for a team minus its own best wide reciever! and the last time I checked your down one main component of “Earth, Wind, and Fire”. You should probably be concerned with your own team, but if you are determined to talk smack that is okay too! We will see when they get on the field! It is possible for monkeys to fly out of a humans ass, as in two years we have seen the Cardinals and the Giants make the Super Bowl!

  6. Doran Palmer

    June 7, 2009 at 9:57 am

    I don’t know … I’ll let you in know in another 40 years when it’s possible.

  7. Jason

    June 7, 2009 at 3:03 pm

    We have Jacobs man, he’s getting bigger by the minute. All we need is Earth, we still have fire, wind is gone but we have what we need.

  8. Doran Palmer

    June 7, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    Yeah but see Barber is as strong as Jacobs, people just forget that because Jacobs has never had to carry the full load, and Barer has worn down at times from doing that. Now with Jones and Choice, this trio beats your trio any day – err I guess I mean your duo.

    I ain’t saying the Giants will be last in the NFC East or anything, but the Cowboys have a better shot at the title than the Giants do. The Eagles are the big competition though.

  9. eric

    June 8, 2009 at 11:46 am

    I agree that there will be slightly more focus this year without the media hype, and high “power rankings” going into the season. They just need to get and stay focused for the whole year.

    The key to me for Dallas will be the Offensive Line. For such a big line with pro-bowlers, they under-performed last year, particularily during the first 1/2 –> 3/4’s of the season. Other than Romo being out, it was the biggest reason they lost games IMO. If line plays up to their potential, I see them going 11-5 or 10-6 even wout TO.

    If line plays like it did last year, I see them going 8-8 or possibly 9-7.

    On Defense the key is depth. I really feel like they are fairly solid at all the starter positions. The “rotation” players and backups are big question marks.

  10. Jonathan

    June 8, 2009 at 2:11 pm

    Giants – Positives: Defense.

    Negatives: If they have the lead, they are adept at keeping in it. But this is not a team that plays well from behind. If the Cowboys hit them in the mouth early, great defense or not, they will have a hard time recovering.

    Eagles – Positives: Offensive additions in the offseason at WR, RB, TE, OT in particular.

    Negatives: Lost Dawkins. Westbrook is on the wrong side of 30 and it will likely show. Jim Johnson likely out due to health issues. Additions, at the of the day, are still rookies; it may be next year before we see that group make a true impact. New OT has to face Ware, our best defensive player. For that reason, I call that acquisition a wash.

    Redskins – Positives: Defensive addition Haynesworth and Orakpo.

    Negatives: No confidence in Jason Campbell. Portis is not a fan of the Head Coach. Haynesworth’s play may drop off due to no longer playing for a contract.

    Cowboys – Positives: No more distractions. Improved special teams play, due to draft geared towards ST and the addition of a highly respected ST coach in Joe Decamallis. Everyone starts the year healthy again. One of the best trio’s at RB and the best duo at TE.

    Negatives: A whole lot of question marks about the vast majority of the team. Flozell (enough said). More youth than veteran presence across the roster.

    Analysis: The Cowboy’s are the ultimate sleeper pick, because team’s are more focused on how the Cowboy’s finished as opposed to the major contributing reasons behind why the Cowboy’s finished with a 9 – 7 record. That, in my opinion, is great news. The competition between all 4 teams is alot closer than what quite a few analyst are predicting.

  11. Doran Palmer

    June 8, 2009 at 3:02 pm

    Very well said Jonathan.

  12. Mike Anello

    June 10, 2009 at 1:51 pm

    Great article. I think it is a positive that the Cowboys are not favored to win anything. We have been developing team chemistry by getting rid of players like “Pacman” and T.O. The team that wins the Super Bowl is never the team that is favored in the beginning of the year.

    Check out my blog- http://thestarsaysitall.wordpress.com

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Cowboys Sign WR Devin Smith, Former 2nd-Round Pick

Jess Haynie

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Devin Smith

The Dallas Cowboys have reportedly signed Receiver Devin Smith, previously with the New York Jets, to a futures contract. Smith was a 2nd-round pick, 37th overall, in the 2015 NFL Draft.

Before going pro, Devin was a college teammate of current Cowboys Ezekiel Elliott, Rod Smith, and Noah Brown. They were all members of the 2014 Ohio State Buckeyes team that won the National Championship.

Smith's agent, Jason Bernstein, tweeting the following earlier today:

Jason Bernstein on Twitter

Congrats to WR Devin Smith @dsmithosu for signing with the #DallasCowboys! Welcome back. https://t.co/hCMYoE8fEh

Thus far, Smith's NFL career has been marred by injuries. He has suffered two ACL tears in the same knee and only been able to appear in 14 games. He was waived by the Jets last summer and was not with any team last season.

Overall, the 2015 class of receivers has been disappointing. Amari Cooper has been a star and other later-round picks like Tyler Lockett, Stefon Diggs, and Jamison Crowder have been good. But the other big names of the class, such as Kevin White, Breshad Perriman, and DeVante Parker, have not lived up to the hype.

The Cowboys are known for trying to reclaim players who once had high draft status and bad starts to their careers. They are clearly hoping to cash in on Smith's previously perceived potential, which had him projected as a possible first-round talent at one time.

For both Devin and Dallas' sake, we hope it's a success!



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Dallas Cowboys

Breaking: Scott Linehan and Dallas Cowboys Part Ways

John Williams

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Scott Linehan Acknowledges Need for New "Wrinkles" in Cowboys Offense

Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network is reporting that the Dallas Cowboys and Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan have mutually agreed to part ways following a tumultuous season that saw the Dallas Cowboys offense finish outside the top 12 three out of his four seasons in Dallas.

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

Sources: The #Cowboys are firing OC Scott Linehan. Taking their offense in a new direction. An announcement is coming.

Scott Linehan was brought in prior to the 2015 season and saw his offenses finish 31st, fifth, 14th, and 22nd in his four years as the Cowboys play caller. The 2015 season can be excused as the Cowboys rolled out Kellen Moore, Matt Cassell, and Brandon Weeden for 13 starts after Tony Romo was injured twice during the season, but the team 2-11 in those 13 starts and the Cowboys failed to make the playoffs despite a strong performance on the defensive side of the football.

The Cowboys saw an offense that finished fifth in the NFL in points in 2016 decline each of the last two offseasons and Linehan has been continually criticized by analysts, fans, and players as well.

Many believe that the reason that Dez Bryant and Brice Butler weren't brought back in the offseason was because of the public criticism of the offense and the play caller instilling the offense and that criticism has carried over to this season when Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper acknowledged that the Philadelphia Eagles were sitting on the slant routes that they had run all game. Dak mentioned that he changed Amari's route to a go route, which led to a 75 yard touchdown that helped open up the offense.

Cole Beasley has been frustrated with his role for much of the season and deservedly so. He was often non-existent in the offensive game plan until the final five minutes of football games.

In the running game, the offense had become too predictable and reliant upon jumbo formations that led to Ezekiel Elliott having to run against eight in the box anywhere from 25-30% of the time. For perspective, Todd Gurley only ran against eight-man fronts around eight percent of the time. Scott Linehan never looked to attempt to take players out of the box, instead insisting on motioning more players into the box for the offensive line and Ezekiel Elliott to run against. It's amazing when you think about it, that Ezekiel Elliott was able to win the rushing title when facing loaded fronts as often as he did.

This was a move that needed to happen and the Dallas Cowboys didn't need to waste anymore time to make it happen. The offense had become stale and frustrating for the players as well as the fans. While Jason Garrett started the offseason saying he "didn't expect any changes," this was a move that absolutely had to happen for the offense to take a step forward. Below, you can read Jason Garrett's announcement on the move.

Mike Garafolo on Twitter

Cowboys have fired Scott Linehan

Even after the move for Amari Cooper, the offense looked better, but it still struggled at times to move the football.

The Cowboys have a young team with especially young players on the offensive side of the football. They have a quarterback who can throw from the pocket, but has excellent movement skills and capabilities of throwing the ball on the run. He's an excellent runner on designed runs. Despite us knowing all that, Scott Linehan looked reluctant to use him on designed quarterback runs that weren't read options or speed options. What you saw on designed runs in the Seattle game is what this team should be doing five times a game.

Now the question becomes, who should the Cowboys next offensive coordinator be? Our own, Staff Writer Brian Martin, laid out 5 Options to be the Next Offensive Coordinator earlier this week. I suggest you give it a read.



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DeMarcus Lawrence Named Top Free Agent Of The 2019 Class

Kevin Brady

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Breaking Down DeMarcus Lawrence's League High 5.5 Sacks Through Week 4

Much has been made about the Dallas Cowboys 2019 free agent class. Dallas has a ton of cap space moving forward, but they are going to "have" to pay many of the key players on their roster over the next two offseasons in order to keep their young core together.

Of course, when you're drafting, that's the goal. To draft so well that when your own players become free agents, you go ahead and pay them to keep them around, rather than overpay on the free agent market for external players.

One of the major pieces the Cowboys will have to retain this offseason is defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence. And while Cowboys Nation often thinks of Lawrence as underrated around the league, the NFL has caught onto his importance as he enters free agency this Spring.

ESPN.com ranked their top 10 free agents for 2019, with DeMarcus Lawrence clocking in at number one, over elite players like Jadeveon Clowney and Le'Veon Bell.

ig: josinaanderson on Twitter

ESPN's top 10 free agents for 2019 and what Le'Veon Bell should be looking to command based on previous measures. https://t.co/aJ7H1n001t

DeMarcus Lawrence is going to command big time money, likely even Khalil Mack-type money. But the fact of the matter is that he has earned it. Lawrence has been the heart and soul of the Cowboys defensive line the last two seasons, and the most consistent edge player on the team as well.

Not only has he been an effective pass rusher, but DeMarcus Lawrence also plays with a relentless motor against the run that can sometimes be rare to find in those premier pass rushers. He really is a jack of all trades at defensive end, and should be priority number one for the Cowboys this offseason.

Thankfully, I can't imagine the Cowboys not retaining DeMarcus Lawrence and extending him in the coming months.



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