Without question the Dallas Cowboys were embarrassed last night on Sunday Night Football. The Philadelphia Eagles handled the Cowboys in every respect, save for maybe special teams where it was a push. The offense appeared to be off; the defense appeared to be slow and incapable of wrapping up a tackle; Tony Romo was off target on some of his throws; the Eagles wide receivers and running backs were running through huge holes in the zone defense packages.
There was a substantial amount of “bad” in that game. But if we look forward, this game will help to inspire the Cowboys players and coaching staff to refocus and rededicate. No one likes to be humiliated, and worse yet – no one likes to be humiliated in front of a large audience. The St. Louis Rams lost to the Cowboys the week prior by the exact same score the Cowboys lost to the Eagles, 34-7. The Rams were motivated to wash the stench of the loss off their collective shoulders and proceeded to beat a far superior team, the New Orleans Saints, the following week. The Rams have pride. They were focused and they played angry.
The question is, “Are the 2011 Dallas Cowboys prideful and angry?” If they are, without a doubt the recipients of the Cowboys best game will be next weeks foe, Seattle Seahawks. Unfortunately, next week’s opponent won’t be a more competent team like the Buffalo Bills, New York Giants, or Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Nonetheless, it will be nice to look forward to a win (again presuming the Cowboys have any pride whatsoever).
The second win will come on Christmas Eve when the Cowboys play the Eagles in Dallas. Last night’s loss will become part of the Eagles v. Cowboys lore, and the Cowboys will have to confront and overcome the chagrin of last night. The Cowboys will be focused. They will be home. Regardless of what 22 starters are on the field, they will play with an intensity that will help launch them into the playoffs (again presuming the Cowboys have any pride whatsoever).
It is a rough Monday morning – Monday mourning seems more apropos. Take solace in the fact that while this blowout is only tabulated as one loss in the team’s record, it may still translate into two wins.