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Weekly Roundup: Cowboys vs Raiders

Bryson Treece

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The Dallas Cowboys are soon headed to start their preseason against the Raiders, and to get us ready for the first game of 2009, we've put together a quick Q&A with Silver and Black Forever. It's what we like to call our Weekly Roundup!

Silver and Black Forever also sent some questions to us about the Cowboys - you can view our answers to their questions by going to Dallas vs. Oakland.


1. Do you have a preseason prediction on how the Raiders season will end up?

My general sense is that the Raiders will improve upon last seasons' 5 win total and field a much more competitive team overall than in 2008. Although the Raiders have a very difficult schedule facing off against such playoff caliber teams like the Chargers, Steelers, Ravens, Eagles, Cowboys, and Giants, I predict the Raiders will end the season at 8-8, 2nd place in the AFC West, and out of the playoffs.

I am hopeful that the Raiders win more than 8 games this year but the core players on offense are still in the developmental stage of their careers and Head Coach Cable is still trying to gain traction. The difference between a small incremental gain in victories and a big leap will be the improvement of JaMarcus Russell, the run defense, and passing attack.


2. Is it true that Al Davis sleeps in a casket?

Very funny Cowboy Nation! No, it is categorically false although Davis is known for being a late night person or nocturnal owl.


3. What happened to Darren McFadden? Is he just struggling with the NFL game, or did we really get the best running back from Arkansas last year?

Unfortunately Darren McFadden suffered a severe turf toe injury in the 2nd game of last season vs. KC and was never completely 100% healthy or able to get into a rhythm for the vast majority of the season. My projections for McFadden this year are 1,800 yards total from scrimmage (run + reception yardage) and 10 TDs. And no, you didn't get the best RB from Arkansas last year. McFadden is on the cusp of super stardom.


4. Darrius Heyward-Bey? Really??? What the heck happened there?


The Raiders drafted the best available WR that fit their system. As you probably know, the Raiders put a premium on speed and the ability to stretch the field with the vertical offense. DHB was the fastest player at the combine and came from a pro style offense at Maryland. WRs that came from a spread offense like (Crabtree or Maclin or Harvin) were not looked upon as a good fit for the Raiders offense. My personal preference for our #7 pick would have been LT Monroe or DT Raji.


5. Do Raiders fans have something to look forward too this year, or is this season going to be a struggle?

I'm quite certain that this season will have it's peaks and valleys. The Raider fans have a lot to look forward to in 2009. There is a sense in Raider Nation that Tom Cable is the right guy, at the right time to work in harmony with Al Davis. Stability at Head Coach and a core of very exciting, talented young players such as Russell, McFadden, Bush, Schillens beings hope. In addition, the way that the Raiders concluded their 2008 campaign on a positive note with wins vs. Houston and Tampa Bay showed the promise of a better future.


We want to extend our thanks to Silver and Black Forever for participating in this week's edition of Weekly Roundup, and wish them luck as they face off against a much better team!


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Nothing gives me greater joy than the experience of being a Dallas Cowboys fan come time to check another victory on the schedule every Sunday. I live Inside the Star everyday and blog on it occasionally, as well. Follow us on Twitter - @InsideTheStarDC

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5 Comments
  • https://insidethestar.com/ Bryson Treece

    Okay, I know this is a Cowboys site and all, but I still figured we’d get some votes against the Cowboys to win. Need some Raider fans to chip in. I suppose the sad prospect is that some of those Cowboys votes so far could include Raider fan votes =P

    • Perk

      I almost voted for the Raiders, just because it’s a preseason game that doesn’t mean jack. But I figured with it being a toss up in that sense, might as well vote for my Boys.

  • PantyRaider

    What up with the “CopyCat” thing….1st y’all come off with your name in “Black” on all those coats and now y’all post that “CowGirlNation” Crap…That sounds as dumb as that “SadFranchise Empire” out in “GayBay”….That’ed be across the bay from “ViolentBay” where the Raidahs play…

    I spent a lot of time down Texas way and was referred to as a “GadDamn Yankee” because Todds made me Foreman…Guess y’all know the deal there….A SeattleBoy as foreman in Texas…”BullShit”….But I had alot of that too because when the metal trades went completely south I turned to driving a truck hauling cattle all over the “LoneStar State” and spreading shit everywhere…I admittedly even spread some bad “Do-Do” about the “CowGirls” moving north and being renamed as the “Arkansas PlowBoys” which resulted in a great deal of “HateMail”…

    So I reconded it’s all kool now if it returns…It’s always easy to kick a dog when he’s down….Just ask my boy Vick….

    Friday morning will be a good-ol time for me though as we smash some heads with each other in preparation for the real deal come “Thanks fer the “V” day” in November…Oh!…Claification….I’m now about 10,000 mile outside US AirSpace trashin around Cambodia/Thailand so it 14 hrs ahead of y’all….Have to buy it on the web at nfl.com to watch….$69/mo….

    So will talk again after the game and break-it-down with ya what needs improvement for both of us remembering this don’t amount to squat…It’s just preparations…

    PantyRaider…Have A Cold One On Me!!!/_

  • PantyRaider

    I’m back…

    In all fairness you had “Score-Board” for the 1st quarter which in the pre-season matters the most but that’s about it….You were able to run the ball for 127yds but gave up 170 on only 26 caries…Your weakness was in the passing game…Your depth behind Romo is sick…Would you be interested in Garcia…I think he is expendable as we have two good young back-ups and the old guy should be “Odd-Man-Out”…”TradeBate”…

    Not to say we have it all together….Our Run “D” is very suspect on a night when the “O” put up good #’s but the “D” still gave up too much yardage to a team trying to play “Catch-Up”….But our passing game is greatly improved from what it was and the run is already great….

    As for the meeting in November don’t expect to see the same “Off-Balanced” “O” as you saw tonight….We passed twice what we ran and I think the regular season will show the opposite….We just came in and work on our weaknesses instead of showcasing our strengths…It’s the preseason so that can be expected….

    Look forward to the “TurkeyDay” with ya but my take is “You Lose”..

    PantyRaider…Still Improving!!!/_

Game Notes

Why The Seahawks Will Be Looking Into A Mirror Against The Cowboys Sunday

Kevin Brady

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Sean's Scout: Starting Front 7 Sets Tone Early, Cowboys Depth Falters in Loss to Bengals 1
AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth

For the better part of the last decade one defense has reigned supreme over the NFC. One defense has continually put their offense and team in position to win big games, including a dominant Super Bowl win over one of the more productive offenses in recent memory.

That defense, of course, belonged to the Seattle Seahawks.

With a secondary deemed as the "Legion of Boom" and a defensive line which rotated through Pro Bowl level talent routinely, the Seahawks bolstered one of the best defenses the NFL has ever seen. A defense which perfectly complimented the physical, run first philosophy their offense lived by.

Players like Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor, Michael Bennett, and Bobby Wagner will arguably be Hall of Famers one day, and they wreaked havoc on the conference for a strong 3-5 year stretch.

Now, however, things are changing.

Gone are many of the elite players which once bolstered the Seattle defense to top-tier status, and while some big names remain, the talent level simply isn't the same. The Seahawks missed the postseason a year ago, and now sit at 0-2 before their home opener today against the Cowboys.

Their window looks to be closed, while their opponent today is looking to build their defense (and team) in the mold of what once was in Seattle.

Former Seahawks defensive coordinator Kris Richard has come to Dallas and brought with him a more aggressive defensive philosophy, one which he deployed successfully with the Seahawks. Under Richard the Cowboys are blitzing more often on third down than they have in the past under Rod Marinelli, they're utilizing more single high safety looks, and they are allowing their long and talented corners to do what they do best in coverage.

The Seahawks once leaned on a deep pass rush and long, physical secondary. The 2018 Cowboys are looking to do the same thing.

The Seahawks once leaned on a mobile quarterback to make plays with his feet while relying on a strong running game and one of the league's best backs. The 2018 Cowboys are looking to do the same thing.

Byron Jones and Chidobe Awuzie look like they were molded in a 2013-Seahawks lab as cornerbacks, and DeMarcus Lawrence is as productive as any pass rusher those defenses had. Of course, we aren't able to say the Cowboys have the consistent front four depth that those Seattle teams did or that they have the single high safety of Earl Thomas' caliber, but the preliminary pieces are clearly in place.

Today the Cowboys look to improve to 2-1 with a conference road win. But, they also look to bury the Seahawks in the past and take another step towards cementing themselves as one of the elite defenses in the NFC.

It won't happen over night, but anyone can see that the potential is there.



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Player News

Could Cowboys DT Datone Jones Earn Starting Role with Maliek Collins Out?

Sean Martin

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Could Cowboys DT Datone Jones Earn Starting Role with Maliek Collins Out?

Dallas Cowboys Defensive Tackle Maliek Collins is out for Sunday's game at the Seahawks with a sprained knee, further opening the door for Datone Jones to earn his spot among the "Hot Boyz". The moniker given to the Cowboys front seven this season, the team's depth up front has been a strength in totaling nine sacks through two games.

Last season, Datone Jones was a part of this rotation late in the year. Coming on strong at the 3T position while Maliek Collins played at the 1T, Jones is the type of versatile defender with veteran experience that Rod Marinelli can get the most out of.

Returning from a knee injury himself, Jones may take some time to be the disruptive interior player we saw at the end of 2017. Through two games, the Cowboys had played Collins at his original position of 3T, with Antwaun Woods doing more than enough to continue playing at 1T.

This potentially makes Collins and Jones two players fighting for one spot. Collins followed up his performance at the Panthers with a sack of Cam Newton by constantly playing in the Giants' backfield last week.

John Owning on Twitter

Guessing that means no Irving, I'd say Tyrone Crawford then Antwaun Woods. I have high hopes for Datone Jones once he returns though. https://t.co/9frjFK2J9J

A player determined to not let his team's misuse slow down his progress, after an incredible rookie season at 3T, Collins is returning from his second broken foot in three years.

Through his five years in the NFL, Jones has only played a full 16 games once.

The most games Datone has started in a season is four. Maliek Collins should like his chances of playing over Jones once both are healthy, and the Cowboys should be equally thrilled with the opportunity to keep both fresh in rotation.

Following Sunday's game in Seattle and next week against the Lions, the Cowboys can return David Irving from suspension to play all over their defensive line - his best position also being at three technique.

Without the wealth of talent they now have at all four positions up front, the Cowboys have had too many bodies to fill similar roles in the past. Thanks to the addition of Kris Richard along with strong edge play from Taco Charlton and rookie Dorance Armstrong, the Cowboys defensive line can do no wrong in 2018, and using Jones in week three and beyond should only add to this.

The Cowboys biggest key to success against the Seahawks will be containing Russell Wilson. Pressuring him in his face to collapse the pocket gives Dallas a chance to really slow the Seahawks offense, something they'll be relying on Jones to help them do as DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory also work with favorable match ups at defensive end.

Tell us what you think about "Could Cowboys DT Datone Jones Earn Starting Role with Maliek Collins Out?" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



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Dallas Cowboys

Could a Cowboys Win VS Seahawks Spark an Earl Thomas Trade?

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Are the Dallas Cowboys Done Pursuing FS Earl Thomas?

As we enter week 3 of the 2018 regular season, we might be entering the next important date in the Earl Thomas conversation. It's been such a wild narrative ever since the Seattle Seahawks' safety asked Dallas Cowboys Head Coach Jason Garrett to "come get him" and the end of this talk is not close. The trade deadline won't come until October 30th. Only then will we be able to put this conversation aside until the 2019 Free Agency arrives.

After all that's happened, including the Cowboys offering a second round draft pick for Thomas, it may come off as optimistic to expect Thomas will wear the Star in 2018. However, when the Dallas Cowboys visit Seattle today, a victory on the road could spark the trade we've been discussing since December. 

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

The #Cowboys and #Seahawks haven't spoken about Earl Thomas since before he return. Some in the Cowboys organization hope to restart talks today. Seattle would have to be blown away to even consider it. https://t.co/dhbSNPeiiF

Ian Rapoport reported today that trade talks ended between both teams after Thomas returned to the team just before the season began. The Cowboys, according to the NFL Network reporter, "hope to restart talks today."

It only makes sense, right?

The Seattle Seahawks are not re-signing the All-Pro safety. It's not happening. Thomas is clearly unhappy with the situation and hasn't been afraid to show it in social media. Shortly after returning to the Seahawks, he went as far as posting that "the disrespect has been well noted and will not be forgotten."

If the Seahawks lose today against the Dallas Cowboys, they'd be 0-3 in a division where the Los Angeles Rams and San Francisco 49ers are the favorites. It'd be really difficult to bounce back into the  playoffs if they open their year with three straight losses. Even more with a very bad offensive line.

If their season comes to a point where all seems lost, why keep Earl Thomas? Why would they wait until free agency next year to let him go instead of getting compensation now? The Dallas Cowboys have already offered them a second round pick earlier this month, according  to reports from ESPN's Adam Schefter. It'd be very hard to understand if they open their season with three losses and still refuse to trade him for a second rounder, considering they don't want to give Thomas an extension.

Kam Chancellor's Seahawks Career Ends, Will Earl Thomas be Next to Leave? 2

The Cowboys and the Seahawks' front offices will be in the same building today, making this even more intriguing. The Seahawks will have the Cowboys out of their way, meaning they wouldn't face their All-Pro safety if they trade him after today's game. This is without a doubt a very important chapter in the Earl Thomas' trade discussion.

So far, the Dallas Cowboys defense has looked legit, ranking as the NFL's third best in points allowed. However, the team is familiar with losing in key moments against elite quarterbacks. Thomas could take this unit to the next level, and put the defense in a very good position to lead the Cowboys to the playoffs and beyond.

For now, Thomas will wear a Seahawks uniform and play against the team in which he might eventually end up. As if the game that's going to be played on the field wasn't enough action, Cowboys Nation will be wondering what's being talked about by both front offices inside CenturyLink Field.

Tell me what you think about "Could a Cowboys Win VS Seahawks Spark an Earl Thomas Trade?" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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