We’ve narrowly avoided it for so long, that we forgot what a loss like this feels like. When a kicker’s miss really hurts the team’s chances of winning. When a coach forgets how to use the clock and his timeouts. When the offensive linemen don’t know when the ball is being hiked. Sound familiar? As was the trend earlier in the year, again we have to stew over a loss that should have been a win. And it still leaves a sour taste in our mouths. As painful as it is (even for me writing this), let’s take one final look at what happened on Sunday, and go over some quick points.
-The Cowboys ‘only’ committed seven penalties for ‘only’ 49 yards. But, again, they seem to come at the worst possible times. Four of the penalties were false starts (why are these still happening?) and five of the penalties came in the fourth quarter and overtime.
-If it seemed like the defense was starting to click in the first half, that’s because they only gave up 49 yards of offense. Unfortunately, it seemed like the Cardinals made adjustments at halftime and Rob Ryan and his crew did not, since Arizona gained 268 yards in the second half (and of course the drive in overtime). Andre Roberts proved to be the Cowboys’ downfall, not Larry Fitzgerald. They dared the Cardinals to let someone else beat them. Sadly, someone else did beat them.
-Arizona was ranked 18th in the league in sacks. The Cowboys gave up five, and it almost felt like Romo was scrambling every time he dropped back, especially in the second half. How do you think we’re going to handle the Giants’ mighty pass rush?
-Arizona was ranked 20th in rush defense. Our star RB DeMarco Murray had a grand total of 38 rushing yards and Felix Jones had 36. It’s so obvious now that this offense needs balance in the attack to succeed. If the Cardinals’ defense can step up and stop Murray and Jones on the ground, how do you think we’re going to do against a Giants’ defense that allowed Aaron Rodgers to be the leading rusher on Sunday?
I apologize if I sound too depressing, Cowboy fans. But our team wasted too many chances on Sunday, especially considering how many other teams in the NFC playoff race lost. I’m not going to say anything like “would’ve, could’ve, should’ve” because there’s nothing we can do about it. I just hope they realize how gigantic the Sunday Night Football game is on December 11.