What do the Dallas Cowboys and the woeful Detroit Lions have in common? Neither team has yet to record an interception going into week 5 of the 2008 season.
Is that shocking or what? Both Ken Hamlin and Terence Newman earned large contract extensions. The Cowboys drafted two cornerbacks in the first five rounds, including Mike Jenkins in the first round. And the Cowboys signed Adam Jones to a one-year deal to bolster the secondary.
But still, the secondary continues to be the weakest link on this team. Not one interception? How can this be?
One reason is how the cornerbacks play the receivers. We have seen it all season so far, huge cushions to every receiver that allows for 5- to 8-yard catches without much effort. Rarely are the corners playing at the line of scrimmage and bumping the receiver to slow the route. Opposing offenses are exploiting this quite easily.
When you bump a receiver at the line of scrimmage, it slows his route by a second, and that means the quarterback has one less second to find an open receiver. It forces the quarterback to throw the ball earlier than he would like, and that can result in interceptions–game changing interceptions that the Cowboys have yet to get.
Patrick Watkins, the safety replacing Roy Williams, is out. Keith Davis will start at safety, with second-year man Courtney Davis seeing extensive playing time.
If the secondary can get its act together, it will make the Cowboys true Super Bowl contenders. Until then, don’t expect much with these offensive shootouts. It’s only a matter of time before the Giants ruins the season.