Aug 15, 2012; Oxnard, CA, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) prepares to take the snap at training camp at the River Ridge Fields. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE

The Dallas Cowboys: The Bad And A Lot Of Ugly

I’ve always been very skeptical about what can be learned from a preseason game besides the work ethic of younger guys trying to find a spot on a team. What can be taken away from the preseason game against Oakland?

Some concerns come to mind right off the bat. Tony Romo seemed to be running for his life, I think I’ve seen that movie before. It looked like a knockoff version of the running of the bulls in Spain. Hopefully we’re not in store for another patchwork offensive line this season, especially since the likes of a Brian Orakpo or Jason Pierre-Paul is much more intimidating than anything the Raiders had to offer.

As if blocking wasn’t already an issue, the loss to injury of star tight end Jason Witten isn’t exactly good news. The word out of camp is he ruptured his spleen during the first quarter of Monday’s game and is suffering from internal bleeding. I’ve never heard of so many injuries so early on. Somebody please stop the bleeding! No pun intended.

As if all of that wasn’t enough to keep your frown, well…frowny, then let’s not add salt to the wound by saying that there was absolutely no offensive production from this squad in that first game. Whoops, already said it. I said it once already, I’ve always been skeptical about what can be taken away from a preseason game. But seriously, the only thing we might have learned from this game is that the product that Oakland was trying to sell was slightly less pathetic.

Fear not my fellow Cowboy faithful, as is with all things with the bad we must find the good. Although not many, there are a few things that offer a small glimmer of hope for what we can look forward to this coming season.

Firstly, we all have to admit that the defense went out and did a decent job of keeping the Raiders in check. Preseason game or not, zero points is still zero points. Say what you want about the importance of the game but nobody goes out there with the intention of getting skunked. There were plenty of moments where the defense did bend a little but never broke. I personally was impressed by the performance of Barry Church. He didn’t land any haymakers or create any turnovers but he made his presence known. Specifically, one play that caught my eye was a third down pass where a receiver was trying to advance the ball for a first down. And Church delivered a hit then wrapped up and brought him down just short. I don’t know about anybody else, but it’s been awhile since I saw a Cowboy safety make a sure tackle like that.

If that wasn’t enough, I’ve got one more for you. We all know Dez Bryant can ball, so that leaping grab in the first quarter shouldn’t come as a surprise. But how about Andre Holmes? He definitely didn’t do anything so spectacular that  might inspire you to go out and buy his jersey. But Holmes did show me that he wants that job opening we’ve all been buzzing about. His height is definitely a little intimidating, if nothing else. Nothing is written in stone, so the biography of Andre Holmes is still pending. But if he’s anything like another Andre I’ve heard of down south, then I’ll have no complaints. As long as he doesn’t mimic the injuries too.

Well, one down and three more to go. I don’t think I can take it much longer but I don’t think that’s an option. We saw some good things and many bad ones but it’s just the preseason. So, no worries loyal Cowboy-ites. There is still much work to be done before the real show starts.

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Tags: Andre Holmes Andre Johnson Barry Church Brian Orakpo Dez Bryant Jason Pierre-paul Jason Witten NFL Preseason Oakland Raiders Tony Romo

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