Grits and Shins

The down fall of Dallas

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Last year the Boys played to a 10-6 record and a playoff berth. IMO this could be largely attributed to Big Bill coaching his team to their optimal levels ... he maximized the talent and output of his players.

 

Comparing last year's players to this year's players at several key positions:

 

Vinny Testaverde vs Quincy Carter.

I have never been a Quincy Carter fan. I believe that while he may have athletic ability, he does not have the brains or talent to be an NFL starting QB. I will be the first to admit that I was amazed at how well he was able to perform last year given his limitations. Testaverde has been around a long time but really what has he done? His best year was 12th year in the league as a Jet under Bill Parcells. Every other year while he may have had lots of yards his TD to INT ratio was horrible and his passer rating sucked. This is his 18th year in the league. What exactly did Big Bill expect from him when he brought him in? Giving Bill the benefit of a doubt I will assume that he was brought in to be a mentor for the starter Quincy Carter ... until whatever it was that happened pre-season resulted in Carter being cut. Bottom line, neither QB was the answer for Dallas. The Chad Hutchinson experiment was a disaster ... but what did you really expect from a failed baseball player out of football for several years? So one failed baseball player worked out soooo good that what do we do? We go get another failed baseball player out of football for several years, Drew Henson. In my mind this really speaks to how poor a GM Dallas has, yes I know that is JJ. He drafted Q too high and then held on to the belief that he would be something he never could too long ... because he (JJ) is stubborn and refused to admit he was wrong on both accounts (when Q should have been drafted and Q's talent). Then he went after 2 failed baseball players and an ancient QB. This looks too much like a man that doesn't want to pay a QB but hopes to find that mythical gold at the end of the rainbow ... looking for that Tom Brady or Kurt Warner that can be had cheap but will perform world class. In 2003 Dallas should have taken Byron Leftwich ... I said it then, and I reiterate it now. Our defense was coming off a very nice year in 2002 and we needed a QB ... not Terrance Newman. We are getting vintage Vinny ... he's good for 1 to 3 or 4 turnovers a game ... and that makes it very hard to win. It's time to throw Drew Henson out there so we can see if he is the QB of the future.

 

Troy Hambrick vs Eddie George

Last year I was all about giving Troy his shot with the departure of Emmitt Smith. Heck I even supported the release of Emmitt. I love Emmitt but it looked to me like the drive was not there ... no drive plus lost steps doesn't make a good RB. It was clear after 2003 that Troy was not the starting RB we had hoped for. Having said that though, I would not have released him. I believe that Troy could still have been a valuable contributor to the team behind whatever RB we found either in free agency or from the draft. There were several RBs available in free agency and the one we managed to snag was Eddie George? Now I know this is only Eddie's 9th year in the league but it was clear to anybody that looked that he was wearing down and had, of late, been struggling with nagging injuries. I guess if you have a great o-line then a veteran back like Eddie could fit. And why exactly did Dallas think Tennessee simply cut Eddie? If we had to go after on "old" back why not Corey Dillon? Or better yet why not get a stud running back in the draft ... say one like Stephen Jackson. :doah: Instead we trade down and get a player with work ethic issues, Julius Jones. Of course Julius has been hurt all season and we haven't been able to see him in action ... but maybe that whole work ethic thing wasn't so off after all? We had to take Jackson with our first pick in 2004. To make matters worse it looks like Buffalo is starting to come on and the 1st rounder we get from them is moving down each week. And if you aren't going to take Stephen Jackson with your first pick maybe you should trade up for Ben Roethlisberger? It's time to get Julius back out there.

 

2003 defense vs 2004 defense

I just can't believe that the loss of Darren Woodson has dropped what was the number 1 defense in 2003 to one of the worst in 2004. I am at a total loss to explain what happened to the 2003 defensive unit of the Cowboys other than to say they apparently played way over their heads in 2003. Roy Williams is a bona fide stud and I also like Dat Nguyen ... but those guys can't get the job done by themselves. Terence Newman has been a big disappointment, especially when I believe we should have drafted Leftwich instead. The single biggest reason the Cowboys are 3-5 this year is because the defensive unit fell apart.

 

Looking back on the season so far it was no surprise that Minnesota beat them. Going into the bye week we were 2-1 after defeating Cleveland and Washington. The loss to New York was because we failed to stop Barber on 2 plays. We should have defeated Pittsburgh but for a fluke fumble ... but once again the defense couldn't stop the Pittsburgh offense by holding them to a FG and forcing OT. We should have been 4-1 going into week 6 instead of 2-3.

 

I believe that Pittsburgh loss was pivotal. It looks like the team has fallen apart since that loss. Part of it is because several of the key players are just old and run down but it was also a big mental blow to lose that game to Pittsburgh. Which was immediately followed up by Green Bay crushing us at Lambeau. The win against Detroit was okay ... but it was against a Roy Williamless Detroit team. The loss to Cinncinati is absolutely devestating.

 

Big Bill came in here and brought in a bunch of his boys from his last team ... Testaverde, Keyshawn, Ward and Richie Anderson ... added another has been RB in Eddie George and expected them to perform at the same level they did when he had them on the Jets. Big Bill looks tired to me when I see him in news conferences. I don't think this is the same Big Bill ... he's older now. It looks to me like he's beat down and can't motivate his players as he was able to in the past. It's week 9 ... and just like all the old men on the roster, Big Bill is wearing down.

 

The ONE bright spot in the whole thing is Jason Witten. I have long maintained that the down fall of the 90's Cowboys began with the loss of Jay Novacek. We finally have a great replacement in Witten.

 

I have ignored for the moment the original Joey Galloway trade from Seattle :D

 

2003 - Leftwich

2004 - SJackson

 

Those guys could be making a big impact on our team right NOW.

 

Sorry ... just had to get that off my chest ... and oh yeah Jerry Jones sucks ass.

Edited by Grits and Shins

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And BTW ... I say throw Drew Henson in there NOW. We need to see NOW if he is the QB of the future.

 

And if you aren't going to take Stephen Jackson with your first pick maybe you should trade up for Ben?

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Hate to disagree, but I dont think leftwich was the answer in Dallas.  I really want to see Henson in there right now. Newman has struggled this yr, but he was the correct pick for this team, and showed why last yr.  What has happened since I dont understand. 

 

I do however completely agree with you on last yrs draft.  S Jackson should have been the pick.  But what I hate more than anything is taking special teams players in rounds 4-8, instead of looking for gems to help this team in the future.

I think Dallas drafts the CB from Miami with one of their picks, and they may have to burn another pick at RB with the 2nd, instead of just taking Jackson last yr and been done with it.

 

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Of course we will never know if Lefty was the answer in Dallas ... and even had we taken him it is possible that he wouldn't be ready to play now because Q played all last year. :D I still believe he would have been a better pick than Newman ... but I sincerely hope that Newman proves me wrong, and soon. I also agree it's Drew Henson time ... as I edited my post to add before you replied. I don't believe Drew will amount to anything but it's time for him to step up or get out.

 

Jackson would be making a huge impact RIGHT now had we drafted him instead of Julius. Yeah, yeah Julius is hurt so we don't know what he is capable of ... blah blah blah. We draft Jackson and I bet we have 2 more wins ... I bet he would have went off on Cincy for the tune of 150+ yards yesterday.

 

I also agree about draft special teams players instead of panning for gold in rounds 4-8 ... but that's Big Bill at work. He wants his special teams to be a big part of the game.

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Blah blah blah is all I hear. All I know is it's kinda nice not having those annoying Cowboy fans touting the glory years of the past. Right now, my beloved Bears have the same record as the Cowboys so, they got nothing on me. Kinda nice actually.

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20/20 hindsight glasses.

 

I bet the Giants wish they had passed on Ron Dayne. You never know what you're going to get until they suit up and play.

 

Vinny did add one thing you left out. I was at the '97 opening day, Ravens hosting the Jags. Vinny threw for a ton of yards, but threw a pick on the potential game winning drive to let Jacksonville, and Rob Johnson, win. That game and a few other made Buffalo believe Johnson was worth what, $4 million a year? Doh.

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I know you guys are Dallas homers and all, but there hasn't been one mention of the Defensive Line at all, and it is by far, one of the most inconsistent groups in the entire NFL.

 

They've beaten Cleveland and Detroit at home...big deal, and Washington is a bad team as well--although they are getting a little better each week.

 

The DL is terrible:

 

They are giving up 4.7 yards a game on the ground, and unless they can stop the run, the rest of the D gets exposed.

 

Marcellus Wiley??? 8 games, 11 tackles, 2 assists, NO SACKS???

 

Greg Ellis: 8 games, 21 tackles, 4 assists, 6 sacks (much better numbers but he disappears for games at a time and gets worn down as the season progresses year after year...he ends up being a non factor in the fourth quarter of games more often than not).

 

Laroi Glover: 8 games, 18 tackles, 3 assists, 3 sacks.

 

You can look to improve the defense right there...when was the last time they found a strong interior or exterior lineman in the draft?

 

In 2004, their first four picks were: RB, OT, OG, DB

In 2003, their first four picks were: DB, C, TE, LB

In 2002, their first four picks were: DB, OG, WR, DB

In 2001, their first four picks were: QB, DT (nowhere to be found), LB, G

 

So, my point is this: from an outsider's view of this, this management team needs to realize that an aging defensive line will only get slower and less effective in the next few years, and the trend is not there to draft younger, faster, and more impact players on the team.

 

I mean, look at the Patriots...they don't need any more defensive linemen, but each year, within the last 4 years, they will attempt to grab an interior lineman, if not for anything else, a rotation to keep the guy's fresh.

 

If I was a fan, I know where I'd want them to go.

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I think that Dallas would go undefeated if they would just wcore more points that their opponent each week.

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20/20 hindsight glasses.

 

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Gotta agree with this. It's easy to judge after the fact even though I think the Stephen Jackson point is valid. Didn't everybody wonder why the Cowboys didn't pick him up...............

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Do you see Big Bill returning next year ?? Something tells me he's had enough already.........permanent retiring....

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Bottom line for me was going into April we needed help at cornerback, a running back and defensive and offensive line help (meaning CB and RB were the priorities, IMHO).

 

My eyes tell me we still have needs at all of those positions. Maybe JJones will be a good RB but I wonder if we'll see enough of him this year to know). Why Rogers has been inactive all year confuses the heck out of me. If he's not hurt why is he not playing?

 

Henson in either after the Monday night game (I don't want him making his 1st start on Monday night against the Eagles) or in the second half when the Mondqay night game will be over. Once you pull Vinny I'd also like to see more of ReShard Lee. If the deal is that the Tuna is worried about him blowing assignments and getting Vinny killed, fine. When Vinny gets pulled Lee should be in most of the time.

 

I said at the time of the draft that passing on Jackson was a mistake. Nothing he has done tells me I was wrong then. It's not hindsight if the move was questioned when the pick wasn't made.

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Yes hind sight is indeed 20/20 ... but I said in 2003 that we should have taken Leftwich ... and just about everybody was astounded that we didn't take Jackson in 2004 when he was the obvious pick.

 

And I have already wondered about Bill returning next year ... like I said he looks tired.

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Last year the Boys played to a 10-6 record and a playoff berth.  IMO this could be largely attributed to Big Bill coaching his team to their optimal levels ... he maximized the talent and output of his players.

 

Comparing last year's players to this year's players at several key positions:

 

Vinny Testaverde vs Quincy Carter.

I have never been a Quincy Carter fan.  I believe that while he may have athletic ability, he does not have the brains or talent to be an NFL starting QB.  I will be the first to admit that I was amazed at how well he was able to perform last year given his limitations.  Testaverde has been around a long time but really what has he done?  His best year was 12th year in the league as a Jet under Bill Parcells.  Every other year while he may have had lots of yards his TD to INT ratio was horrible and his passer rating sucked.  This is his 18th year in the league.  What exactly did Big Bill expect from him when he brought him in?  Giving Bill the benefit of a doubt I will assume that he was brought in to be a mentor for the starter Quincy Carter ... until whatever it was that happened pre-season resulted in Carter being cut.  Bottom line, neither QB was the answer for Dallas.  The Chad Hutchinson experiment was a disaster ... but what did you really expect from a failed baseball player out of football for several years?  So one failed baseball player worked out soooo good that what do we do?  We go get another failed baseball player out of football for several years, Drew Henson.  In my mind this really speaks to how poor a GM Dallas has, yes I know that is JJ.  He drafted Q too high and then held on to the belief that he would be something he never could too long ... because he (JJ) is stubborn and refused to admit he was wrong on both accounts (when Q should have been drafted and Q's talent).  Then he went after 2 failed baseball players and an ancient QB.  This looks too much like a man that doesn't want to pay a QB but hopes to find that mythical gold at the end of the rainbow ... looking for that Tom Brady or Kurt Warner that can be had cheap but will perform world class.  In 2003 Dallas should have taken Byron Leftwich ... I said it then, and I reiterate it now.  Our defense was coming off a very nice year in 2002 and we needed a QB ... not Terrance Newman.  We are getting vintage Vinny ... he's good for 1 to 3 or 4 turnovers a game ... and that makes it very hard to win.  It's time to throw Drew Henson out there so we can see if he is the QB of the future.

 

Troy Hambrick vs Eddie George

Last year I was all about giving Troy his shot with the departure of Emmitt Smith.  Heck I even supported the release of Emmitt.  I love Emmitt but it looked to me like the drive was not there ... no drive plus lost steps doesn't make a good RB.  It was clear after 2003 that Troy was not the starting RB we had hoped for.  Having said that though, I would not have released him.  I believe that Troy could still have been a valuable contributor to the team behind whatever RB we found either in free agency or from the draft.  There were several RBs available in free agency and the one we managed to snag was Eddie George?  Now I know this is only Eddie's 9th year in the league but it was clear to anybody that looked that he was wearing down and had, of late, been struggling with nagging injuries.  I guess if you have a great o-line then a veteran back like Eddie could fit.  And why exactly did Dallas think Tennessee simply cut Eddie?  If we had to go after on "old" back why not Corey Dillon?  Or better yet why not get a stud running back in the draft ... say one like Stephen Jackson. :doah:  Instead we trade down and get a player with work ethic issues, Julius Jones.  Of course Julius has been hurt all season and we haven't been able to see him in action ... but maybe that whole work ethic thing wasn't so off after all?  We had to take Jackson with our first pick in 2004.  To make matters worse it looks like Buffalo is starting to come on and the 1st rounder we get from them is moving down each week.  And if you aren't going to take Stephen Jackson with your first pick maybe you should trade up for Ben Roethlisberger?  It's time to get Julius back out there.

 

2003 defense vs 2004 defense

I just can't believe that the loss of Darren Woodson has dropped what was the number 1 defense in 2003 to one of the worst in 2004.  I am at a total loss to explain what happened to the 2003 defensive unit of the Cowboys other than to say they apparently played way over their heads in 2003.  Roy Williams is a bona fide stud and I also like Dat Nguyen ... but those guys can't get the job done by themselves.  Terence Newman has been a big disappointment, especially when I believe we should have drafted Leftwich instead.  The single biggest reason the Cowboys are 3-5 this year is because the defensive unit fell apart.

 

Looking back on the season so far it was no surprise that Minnesota beat them.  Going into the bye week we were 2-1 after defeating Cleveland and Washington.  The loss to New York was because we failed to stop Barber on 2 plays.  We should have defeated Pittsburgh but for a fluke fumble ... but once again the defense couldn't stop the Pittsburgh offense by holding them to a FG and forcing OT.  We should have been 4-1 going into week 6 instead of 2-3.

 

I believe that Pittsburgh loss was pivotal.  It looks like the team has fallen apart since that loss.  Part of it is because several of the key players are just old and run down but it was also a big mental blow to lose that game to Pittsburgh.  Which was immediately followed up by Green Bay crushing us at Lambeau.  The win against Detroit was okay ... but it was against a Roy Williamless Detroit team.  The loss to Cinncinati is absolutely devestating. 

 

Big Bill came in here and brought in a bunch of his boys from his last team ... Testaverde, Keyshawn, Ward and Richie Anderson ... added another has been RB in Eddie George and expected them to perform at the same level they did when he had them on the Jets.  Big Bill looks tired to me when I see him in news conferences.  I don't think this is the same Big Bill ... he's older now.  It looks to me like he's beat down and can't motivate his players as he was able to in the past.  It's week 9 ... and just like all the old men on the roster, Big Bill is wearing down.

 

The ONE bright spot in the whole thing is Jason Witten.  I have long maintained that the down fall of the 90's Cowboys began with the loss of Jay Novacek.  We finally have a great replacement in Witten.

 

I have ignored for the moment the original Joey Galloway trade from Seattle :D

 

2003 - Leftwich

2004 - SJackson

 

Those guys could be making a big impact on our team right NOW.

 

Sorry ... just had to get that off my chest ... and oh yeah Jerry Jones sucks ass.

 

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Greg ellis over Moss, Roy williams over Portis, Galloway picks which turned out to be Shaun alexander and newman instead of leftwich nuff said scouting and Jones sucks. :D

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One other thing ... it is also apparent to me that Vinny can not throw the long ball effectively.

 

Every time he tries to throw long it either comes up short or the WR has to slow down to attempt to catch the ball (sometimes even having to turn around). I have seen this result in missed TDs and INTs.

 

Dallas can not stretch the field.

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Greg ellis over Moss,  Roy williams over Portis, Galloway picks which turned out to be Shaun alexander and newman instead of leftwich nuff said scouting and Jones sucks. :D

 

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It's easy to point out Greg Ellis over Moss ... but Dallas wasn't the only organization that made that mistake. Hard to fault the Cowboys on that one ... even though in hind sight it looks like a horrible mistake. The other thing to consider is whether or not Moss would actually have flourished here like he did in Minnesota. I remember when we cut Jimmy Smith too.

 

Roy Williams over Portis, I don't really have that much of a problem with this one as we were still running Emmitt. Although an arguement can certainly be made.

 

I thought Seattle used the Galloway picks for Shaun Alexander and Koren Robinson.

 

I agree that JJ is a horrible GM.

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And I have already wondered about Bill returning next year ... like I said he looks tired.

 

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Not to dis Parcells in any way, as he's earned his respect from any pro football fan ... but whenever I grabbed my friend's binoculars yesterday and looked at him, I had the same thought. He didn't just look tired, but almost uninterested. Maybe he mostly looks like that, I dunno -- but it wasn't the same Parcells I've seen on TV in the past (if that means anything, which it probably doesn't).

 

A win is always welcome in Cincy, but when I got these tickets months ago I was hoping to see a competitive game between two franchises trying to turn it around and gunning for a playoff spot. Obviously, that wasn't the game I saw yesterday. It was like one marginally bad team (I think the Bengals had about 90 yards of offense in the first half) against a team that's pretty much thrown in the towel.

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And BTW ... I say throw Drew Henson in there NOW.  We need to see NOW if he is the QB of the future.

 

And if you aren't going to take Stephen Jackson with your first pick maybe you should trade up for Ben?

 

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Truer words have never been spoken. We don't want to be starting a rookie QB in 2005. Get him his snaps now in attempt to slow the game down before the start of the season, using the final 8 games as an evaluation period heading into the draft.

 

I like Julius Jones and we need to see what Henson has. If he is as good as advertised, which we may or may not know with a 42 Year old QB playing, I can see a WR, DL, and CB in the early rounds.

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2 #1s next year.Henson will be brought along nicely.Still dont know what we have in Jones.Im a die hard Dallas fan and although this year has been a bust so far I think the future looks bright.I think Parcells will stick around and see out some of the young talent we have and will have with next years draft.The difference between Dallas and most other teams is when Dallas goes on a run we cash in with superbowls.We are not ready right now but will be before you know it.With the parity that you see in the NFL right now a team can get good quick.A lot of young talent and a legend as a coach sits well with me.Dallas haters can laugh now but Cowboys fans will laugh last.

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Look at Bill Parcells' history with teams. His year 2 teams have struggled every time. Throw in the towel for this season, and expect good things next season.

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Here's a copy and paste from another site...I guess Parcells couldn't face his boys today.

 

POSTED 4:28 p.m. EST, November 8, 2004

 

 

 

"PISSED" PARCELLS SENDS PLAYERS HOME

 

 

 

A league source tells us that Cowboys coach Bill Parcells unexpectedly pulled the plug on Monday's day-after activities in Big D, sending the players home a day after an embarrassing 26-3 loss to the Bengals in Cincy.

 

 

 

Parcells was "pissed," said the source.

 

 

 

Though our initial reaction to the news is that Parcells might be thinking about resigning his gig with the Cowboys, the source said that Parcells has not indicated, through words or deeds, a desire to walk away.

 

 

 

With that said, wethinks more than a few guys wearing the silver helmet with the blue star will be wishing that Parcells had quit, since it's our guess that Tuna will be kicking some boo-tay in practice this week -- and every week -- until the Cowboys turn it around.

 

 

 

The more interesting question is whether the Tuna will be back in 2005. On one hand, he's likely had enough. On the other, we can't see him walking away from a train wreck. Our guess is that he'd give it another year.

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Here's a copy and paste from another site...I guess Parcells couldn't face his boys today.

 

POSTED 4:28 p.m. EST, November 8, 2004

 

 

 

"PISSED" PARCELLS SENDS PLAYERS HOME

 

 

 

A league source tells us that Cowboys coach Bill Parcells unexpectedly pulled the plug on Monday's day-after activities in Big D, sending the players home a day after an embarrassing 26-3 loss to the Bengals in Cincy.

 

 

 

Parcells was "pissed," said the source.

 

 

 

Though our initial reaction to the news is that Parcells might be thinking about resigning his gig with the Cowboys, the source said that Parcells has not indicated, through words or deeds, a desire to walk away.

 

 

 

With that said, wethinks more than a few guys wearing the silver helmet with the blue star will be wishing that Parcells had quit, since it's our guess that Tuna will be kicking some boo-tay in practice this week -- and every week -- until the Cowboys turn it around.

 

 

 

The more interesting question is whether the Tuna will be back in 2005.  On one hand, he's likely had enough.  On the other, we can't see him walking away from a train wreck.  Our guess is that he'd give it another year.

 

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:bawling: <-- Bill Parcells

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2 #1s next year.Henson will be brought along nicely.Still dont know what we have in Jones.Im a die hard Dallas fan and although this year has been a bust so far I think the future looks bright.I think Parcells will stick around and see out some of the young talent we have and will have with next years draft.The difference between Dallas and most other teams is when Dallas goes on a run we cash in with superbowls.We are not ready right now but will be before you know it.With the parity that you see in the NFL right now a team can get good quick.A lot of young talent and a legend as a coach sits well with me.Dallas haters can laugh now but Cowboys fans will laugh last.

 

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A lot of young talent ... you mean like Testaverde, George, Keyshawn, Glenn, Ward and Richie Anderson ... or maybe you meant Darren Woodsen. We traded our youngest WR, Bryant.

 

If Henson can't cut it now what makes you think he will cut it next year. He needs first team reps and he needs them now.

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I expected Dallas to backslide - Parcells did one hell of a coaching job last year - and their 2nd half schedule doesn't do them any favors, what with Philly twice, at Baltimore, and at Seattle. Those are 4 immediate Ls, never mind what happens in the other 4 games.

 

I'd say one of the big problems is losing Q and putting in Vinny; all other things being equal, it's a TREMENDOUS downgrade in athleticism. Losing Jones and having to fill in with has-been Eddie George and never-was Richie Anderson is terrible as well.

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