Jun 12, 2012; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Rob Ryan during minicamp at Dallas Cowboys headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

The Dallas Cowboys Defense Will Be Better…Numbers Don’t Lie


Like Shakira’s hips, the numbers don’t lie.  The Dallas Cowboys defense should get better according to the numbers based on points per game.  Let’s face it, points win or lose games.  You can have a 300 yard rusher along with 100 yard rusher and still lose a football game; but if your defense allows too many points on the board.  Yards don’t make a victory, they make a game, but not a win.

According to NFL.com stats, in 2009 the Cowboys allowed 15.6 points per game placing them in the top ten.  That same year, which happened to be Rob Ryan’s first season in Cleveland, where they had 23.4 points per game and at the bottom of the NFL list for points.  In 2010, the Cowboys had a dismal 27.2 points per game.  The Browns had an improved 19.2, one full year after Ryan had time to implement his system and the players had the time to learn it.  Cleveland had another 19.2 points per game average in 2011, using the same players but different scheme. The Cowboys had a 21.7 points per game average in 2011 and that was with no OTA’s and very little training camp.

Now that Ryan is getting all of the OTA’s and a full training camp in to implement his system plus the fact that many of the veterans are one year into it; what he puts in that is new will not be such a task to learn.

Will the Cowboys revert back to those “Doomsday Defense” glory days?  That would be great but the Cowboys would have to be the top ranking team to even be close to fans embracing the return of “Doomsday.”

As I pointed out, points will win the games.  Something the movie “Moneyball” pointed out and proved to the world of baseball.  The Cowboys defense was good in ’09 but saw some pretty gruesome numbers in ’10.  Last year was an improvement with very little study time.  I am predicting that the Cowboys should hold their opponents to respectful 18.3 based on the numbers between Cleveland’s numbers one year after Ryan’s defense was implemented and took it down a few more points because I believe that the Cowboys have more talent than the ’10 Browns.

Key additions are pretty obvious, getting Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr to start at CB is going to be vital.  Claiborne is going to struggle at first but after he figures things out, watch out as he will be something special to watch.  Carr is the perfect mentor and tutor plus he has enough in the tank to be a force for a few more years.

The LB corp is solid with Demarcus Ware leading the pack along with veteran Sean Lee in place to guide the youngsters.  Anthony Spencer will hopefully cash in on a big year and Bruce Carter, who is tagged as the MLB needs to be able to show the kind of leadership Sean Lee has at that position.  Lee is tagged currently at Outside Linebacker position.

The defensive line should be good with a possible question mark at the LE position.  Jason Hatcher should be better as he is time to get accustomed to the defensive scheme.  NFL.com stats had him listed as having 28 tackles compared to Jay Ratliff and Kenyon Coleman, who both averaged 37 tackles between the two of them. Ratliff and Coleman are going to be the keys to the line this year.

His block in the back cost his team the game

The biggest concern will be the safeties.  Gerald Sensabaugh will be good, but the other side is going to be a question mark.  According to the Scout’s Notebook on the dallascowboys.com website, they tried Mario Butler at safety.  Butler is in his second season, out of Georgia Tech.  I would suggest telling Orlando Scandrick to get busy learning the safety position or put him on the trade block.  We need a good safety and I would think if Scandrick would learn the position, he could excel.

We shall see as more of the Cowboys training camp continues and we inch closer to that Wednesday night showdown with the New York Giants in September.

Tags: Dallas Cowboys Defense Featured Rob Ryan

  • Bo Martin

    BAHAHA @ the Shakira’s hips line! Sean Lee to me is the key to having a very successful defense in the future. I think you’re right, we’re looking at a very improved defense. Safety is always a big concern but I believe that Matt Johnson might be able to help solidify this group in the future. It’ll be fun to watch thats for sure! Thanks for the article!

  • californy

    I take more a realistic approach, your article sound really positive but you failed to discuss something that is crucial to the defense and that is rest. I know Jeff you know about football, I will not question your credential in that department. I go on the record of not wanting Claiborne or any player in the top 10 pick other than Kuechey LB. Kuecheye was not need for us, but OL was. I wanted to traded to answer this need. Why is OL so importantant for me. First of all it protect this team best player in Romo, It allow more deeper passes in the passing game, it allow a more balance attack in the running game, it allow more points in the Red zone , more TD vs FG, it also allow us more time possession so our defense can be more fresh.
    I would of drafted a more ready CB who was more tested, and could be our starter day one. Claiborne is not that CB for us, but he will be this team starter. The Cowboys already said that Jenkins will not compete for his position. This is a huge mistake. Competion is a good thing and no player should be given a spot base on where they were drafted or base on the size of the contract. Here are a couple more example of that in player like Tyron Smith and Jermey Parnell. They didnt have to compete, they were given that position. That dont sit to well with me.
    I doubt any of our drafted Rookie will make the impact they are expecting. It the undrafted Rookie that have my attention. I like player like Adrian hamilton, Isaac madison CB, Lionel Smith CB, Cole Beasley WR, levy Adcock T-Guard, Harland Gunn Guard – center, Aston Whiteside Lb, and Ben Bass DE. I wonder which of these player we will lose to protect our drafted players when we try to sneak them on to the practice squad.
    RR will have a better year base on the fact he has a full camp with these players. I expect Connor to blow out Carter in the LB position. I expect bigger thing from LB Albright, he will beat out McSurdy and Wilber. It would be a huge mistake to move him to the practice squad. Hanna can not block and has bad hands, he doesnt deserve to make this squad but he will regardless.
    I expect Harris, Cole Beasley and Coale to be this team WR , with Beford put on the practices squad. Holmes is way over rated, so is Leary, Costa & Bernardeau.
    JJ is clueless as this team GM leaving player like Fannin center, Jason brown, center, Gurode, and Vincent Manuwai Guard unsigned. Cost has only 1 year or College starts and NFL start as a center. Our new Guard is damage good in Bernardeau. Gunn and levy Adcock are two player who didnt give up a sack last year, but they will favor bad knee Leary and under preforming draft pick in Arkins.

  • ctcowboy1968

    Doomsday? Never. They will never have the talent and mojo of the Manster, Too Tall, Harvey Martin, etc.
    This D needs to go back to the 4-3. They have the talent already on the team. DE = Ware and Spencer. DT = Rat/Brent, Lissemore. LB = Lee, Connor, Carter.
    As for Scandrick, he has previously rejected the S position. He is the slot CB and nothing else.
    You will be disappointed if you are counting on Rat and Coleman as keys to this D. They will be minor players on this team. For anybody that hasn’t just come back from the dark side of the moon and has read anything about the Cowboys, Hatcher has been best player all offseason. He is the up and coming key to the D line. It goes without saying that Ware is the ultimate key with his sacks, but Ware needs a partner in sackville. That should be Hatcher.
    This D should be greatly improved but not for the reasons you state.
    Here are the keys: New CBs to stop the D meltdowns at the end of the games. New young, fast, athletic ILBs to stop the run game up the middle. Teams can’t run outside on the Boys thanks to Ware and Spencer.