All I can say for this game is Brian Stewart has got some work to do! This is now the second game in a row where this defense looked, well let’s say shaky at times. This unit needs to step it up come game one of the “Real Season” for this team to carry out the goals they wish to achieve. I am sure have all heard the saying “defense wins championships” well this year will be no different. As great an offensive team as this is,they will not win nor play for a championship, if this unit cannot step it up.
Well I, like the Cowboys am still in preseason mode, so bear with me on this first recap post! First of all, I thought the D-line played very well throughout last night. The Texans O-Line was not much challenge to the first teamers, as Tank, Canty, and Spears busted through seemingly at will. Marcus Spears had probably his best game of the year, although the numbers may not show it, as he logged only one tackle and one assist. Spears spent a lot of the night in the backfield. Tank Johnson looks to be a man on a mission! Nearly every play he beat his man, and caused the Texans plays to be redirected. The only negative thing I noted about Tank, and Spears for that matter, is their tackling. Its one thing to be in the backfield, but if you cannot make the tackle then what good does it do you? We did not hear Chris Canty’s name much last night, but there were no running lanes on his side of the line. So in my opinion that is a BIG positive. Ratliff, Bowen, and Hatcher all looked good, although it is difficult to judge when the field is full of 2nd and 3rd string players.
Here is where it gets shaky for the Boys. Outside of DeMarcus Ware, this linebacker corp. last night was exceptionally average! They had plenty of intensity, but, over pursuit is what kept the Texans in the game. The screen pass and the draw play were Matt Schaub and Co. best friend! These areas must be corrected! And quickly! Bradie James and Zach Thomas played an entire half of football and combined for two tackles and one assist (the two tackles recorded by Zach Thomas). So here is the “Leader of the Defense” and inside linebacker, recording ONE ASSIST!! If this does not change, I will be ripping Bradie instead of Roy Willy, well maybe not instead of but in addition too. These types of numbers are completely unacceptable! Now let’s move on before my blood pressure gets entirely out of hand. This next backer had by the numbers a good game, but the numbers are very deceiving in Bobby Carpenter’s case. This guy is and has been a complete bust, another wasted first round pick. Thank you oh “Draft God” Bill Parcells, do not get me wrong Bill made some great picks, this however was not even close. If I have to suffer through watching much more of this guy I am going to puke! He seems to always be around the ball, unfortunately it’s just after someone else has made the tackle, and the ball carrier made an extra couple of yards. He needs to go!
The secondary was pretty solid last night. Once the blitz packages come this unit is going to have many, many chances for interceptions. They are deep too, not much drop off, if any from 1st to 2nd string. Before he hurt his shoulder, I thought Scandrick was having a nice game for a 5th Round rookie corner. Anthony Henry can still play! Adam Jones had another solid game, he continues to get better every week. Oh by the way it is official, the Cowboys now have a legitimate “Take it to the house” punt returner! Jones was about 3 inches away from taking one to the house last night. Roy Willy has not changed much, same song and dance for him, even with the number change! If not for Matt Schaub forgetting how to throw, Owen Daniels burns him. I will say he was at least in the same zip code as his man, last year all we would have seen was his back. Campo I love you man but can you please give Roy some one on one tackling instruction. For a guy known for hitting, he has completely forgotten how! The one good thing I can report on Roy’s performance, limited play! Thank You, Brian Stewart.
All in all for the 3rd preseason game it was a decent showing for this year’s defense. If they can build on this performance they should be ok. We will all have a better idea of what they got after the Cleveland game. The defense should get all it can handle in the “Dawg Pound”. This teams hopes and dreams rest solely on the shoulders of this defense. It is time to put or shut up! No more excuses its time for them all to prove they belong or hit the road. I for one believe they can and will prove to us all that they are a great defense, not just good!