Posted November 13, 2012 on
AP on Fox
(Eds: Updates.) By SCHUYLER DIXON AP Sports Writer Somewhere in the middle of six defensive penalties that gave Philadelphia first downs, Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett turned to backup quarterback Kyle Orton to talk a little game simulation.
''I want to hear 800 hard counts in practice this week,'' Garrett recalled himself saying while watching jumpy Dallas defenders pile up the offsides calls Sunday.
The game was the fourth in which Dallas has committed 13 penalties this season, but here's the funny part. The Cowboys are 3-1 in those games after beating the Eagles 38-23, and they're 0-2 with their season low in yellow flags - two.
''Oh, I think there's a few different ways you can spin that,'' Garrett said. ''You know, for years the Oakland Raiders were the most penalized team and they won a lot of football games. And they used to spin it like it was an aggressive nature that they had and that's the kind of team that they wanted to be. I don't buy that completely, though. You don't want to hurt yourself as a football team.''
The penalties ultimately didn't hurt Dallas (4-5) against the Eagles because that same defense scored two touchdowns on an interception return by Brandon Carr and a fumble recovery by Jason Hatcher.
Hatcher had the first two offsides penalties, both resulting in first downs on third-down plays on the Eagles' first drive. Philadelphia was the only team in the league without points on its opening drive before getting a touchdown Sunday.
The Hatcher penalties were at least explainable because he's a defensive lineman, prone to jump when a quarterback puts some emphasis on a signal without taking the snap - the so-called hard count. It doesn't make sense when a cornerback does it away from the ball, and rookie Morris Claiborne jumped twice.
''As a defensive football team you are always teaching aggressiveness, getting off the ball, attacking and all of that,'' Garrett said. ''But at the same time you have to be disciplined.''
Maybe Claiborne was just having a bad day, perhaps his worst as a pro. He got beat for the game-opening touchdown by Riley Cooper, who had just two catches for the season before the leaping one-handed grab in the end zone. Claiborne also was called for defensive holding twice and interference once.
''It was a struggle, sort of like that third baseman when they bunt it to him early on, in the first inning, he picks it up and throws it 15 rows over the first baseman's head,'' Garrett said. ''The bunts keep coming, right? So they kept going after him, and that's an experience a lot of rookie corners have to experience in this league.''
The Cowboys, tied for second in the league with 74 penalties going into Sunday's home game against Cleveland (2-7), had 13 in three of the first five games, and most of the talk then was about an offensive line committing too many false starts and holding penalties.
Against Philadelphia, the focus of the problem shifted to the defensive line, but this was the same group that pressured Michael Vick early and sidelined him with a concussion. The Cowboys sacked rookie backup Nick Foles twice, including one that resulted in Hatcher's touchdown.
''You don't want to take the aggressiveness away from those guys,'' Garrett said. ''The best defensive lines are the ones that get off the football, and we do a pretty good job of getting off the football. For the most part we've been pretty good in this area. We just have to correct it.''
Online: http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL
Follow Schuyler Dixon on Twitter at https://twitter.com/lschuylerd
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
The Dallas Cowboys are back in the playoff race even though they've had little to do with it. They were able to scratch out two wins during a five-game stretch that saw them play four of five games on the road.
It's not like they deserve to be in the thick of things with a 4-5 record, but that's exactly where they are thanks to the New York Giants losing two consecutive...
Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett accepts QB Tony Romo for what he is, a good player at times, a bad player at times.
What would Garrett change about his QB? Nothing. He's fine just the way he is, Garrett said in so many words to the Dallas Morning News.
“The amazing thing with him is he feels so much and then he can see so much while all of this stuff is going on...
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo claims that wide receiver Dez Bryant is maturing and has gotten much better since he was a rookie a few years ago.
“Dez has come full circle from where he was a couple of years ago,” Romo said, per the Dallas Morning News. “We go by catches whether or not someone has a good game as fans or as media, sometimes. But when we watch the tape...
Dallas Cowboys defensive end Kenyon Coleman is out for the season with a torn triceps muscle in his left arm.
Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said Monday that Coleman will be placed on injured reserve and have surgery.
The 11th-year pro sustained the injury during the third quarter of Sunday's 38-23 victory at Philadelphia.
Coleman started seven games this season, missing two...
Dallas Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant has agreed to a year of anger management counseling as part of a deal that could lead to dismissal of a family violence charge over a dispute with his mother.
Attorney Royce West said Wednesday that Bryant was already attending anger management sessions, and he said the Dallas County district attorney's office would dismiss the charge if Bryant...
What a difference a few big plays make. If only, like the team in Chicago, a game like this happened all of the time, we might think of the Cowboys as a truly elite defense. Difficult to run against, physical, and opportunistic with a few big plays that they might put into your end zone.
Of course, "a game like this" is absurdly unrealistic.
How much so? Well, we have...
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones doesn’t appear to be too optimistic about RB DeMarco Murray returning this week.
“You want to be very comfortable for him to make his cut,” Jones said, via the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. ”All of that has to be right before he goes out there because we got to look down the road here. We hope we are in this thing and needing him on every play...
Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant has agreed to a year of anger management counseling as part of a deal that could lead to dismissal of a family violence charge over a dispute with his mother.
Attorney Royce West said Wednesday that Bryant was already attending anger management sessions, and he said the Dallas County district attorney's office would dismiss the charge if Bryant stays...
IRVING It was reported Wednesday that Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant had reached a deal with the District Attorney's office to have his misdemeanor family assault charge conditionally dismissed.
During his Thursday press conference, Cowboys coach Jason Garrett answered several questions about how the organization will handle the situation with Bryant, who was accused of hitting...
“I hear the weather’s nice in Dallas.”
The Cowboys got a crucial win over the Eagles yesterday by riding defensive and special teams touchdowns to victory…and by knocking Michael Vick out of commission and then harassing rookie QB Nick Foles just enough. Oh, and by Tony Romo not throwing a single INT.
So, let’s celebrate the big win by throwing fuel on the newest rumor...
Dallas Cowboys coach Rob Ryan sported a very cool "Pat’s Kings Of Steaks" ad on his play calling sheet yesterday against the Philadelphia Eagles. Darren Rovell tweeted that Rob does it for fun and...
Full story at Bob's Blitz ~ http://www.bobsblitz.com
With Mike Holmgren on his way out as Cleveland Browns president, speculation has shifted to where the former Super Bowl champion coach will land next. One of those spots could be the Dallas Cowboys, should coach Jason Garrett be fired after the season. Holmgren has known owner Jerry Jones for many years. Holmgren attempted to quiet that talk Monday, telling the Cleveland media...
Really really bad news for Jason Garrett you’d think, but Jason LaCanfora is reporting that Holmgren could be a fit in Dallas.
Holmgren, who is finishing up a disappointing three-year run as the Browns’ team president, has said he would consider a return to coaching, where he already has a case for potential Hall of Fame induction. Some sources who know Holmgren well believe Dallas is...