I don’t know the cause, whether it be jet lag, being too full of themselves after the big win against the New York Giants, underestimating the Seattle Seahawks, or what, but the Dallas Cowboys played what I hope is the worst game we will see from them all year
They appeared to be walking in their sleep and made way too many mistakes to get back into the game. Compiled below is a list of mistakes that I saw.
On special teams: Felix Jones fumbled on the opening kickoff. Dan Connor let the punt blocker get by him, which led to a blocked punt and touchdown for the Seattle Seahawks. There were at least a couple of times the Seahawks kickoff went deep enough into the end-zone that Jones should have downed it, rather than try to run it out and get no further than the 15 yard line.
Dez Bryant also dropped a punt that he was able to pick up. It risked a turnover and took any chance of a good return away. Late in the game the Cowboys were penalized for 12 men on the field for a punt return. The penalty allowed the Seahawks offense to come back out for a 4th and 1 play, which they made.
On offense: It was a very uncharacteristic game for Jason Witten. He dropped four catchable passes and most of them were in key moments, such as on third down. Dez also dropped a pass that should have been caught, as well as allowing another one to be knocked out of his hands. He also fumbled a catch and it was fortunate that Doug Free was there to recover it.
Then there was a botched shotgun snap that Tony Romo dropped and was able to pick up. Romo did not appear to be on the same page as his receivers all day, with one interception and several more that were close. He also had more than a few overthrows to the receivers.
The line did not protect Romo well, as he appeared to be running from the pass rush on almost every play. And they did not do a very good job of opening holes for DeMarco Murray. The only good thing I can say about the line is that they had less penalties than last week.
On defense: Lynch broke off a 16 yard run, because Danny McCray went inside to help, instead of staying outside to cover his area of responsibility. Later Lynch was able to make a longer run of 36 yards. On the 23 yard TD pass and catch by the Seahawks, Connor should have stayed with the tight end, instead of letting him run free to the end-zone. Then there was the facemask call on Spencer late in the game. By the time the 4th quarter came around, the Cowboys’ defense appeared to be in a state of complete disarray.
On the officials: Seahawks’ receiver Golden Tate went helmet to helmet on Sean Lee and all the officials can find to penalize is a gentle shove by Bruce Carter on Russell Wilson as he was going out of bounds. Get this thing settled with the regular NFL officials, please.
Jason Garret has a lot of support from the fans, but if there are more games like this one, they will turn on him really quick. I am really scratching my head here, trying to figure out how this game could have gone so terribly wrong.
One thing for sure, no matter who the other team is, if you give them cheap opportunities to score early in the game, it will get away from you quickly and get to the point that you can’t get it back. In this case, with the early lead, Seattle was able to play their game instead of their play being dictated by the Cowboys.
Other thoughts: I am glad to see that Bruce Carter is the starter beside Sean Lee. He continues to impress. I wish he could have made that interception when he had the chance though. When Connor is in the game, it seems like he makes critical mistakes. Maybe he is a fine backup linebacker and maybe that’s where he needs to stay, on the bench as a backup.
What good is Felix Jones? He is another one whose mistakes appear to outweigh his positive plays.
Where is Lawrence Vickers? I expected to see devastating blocks from him, but I never even hear his name called.
This was a thorough whipping from start to finish that I hope the Cowboys learn from. We have Tampa Bay coming up and it won’t be easy. They gave the Giants a real run for their money yesterday.