Found September 23, 2012 on Fox Sports Southwest:
ARLINGTON, Texas As the Sunday sun was setting on Cowboys Stadium, two old Dallas quarterbacks compared notes on the deeper meaning of the home team's 16-10 win over Tampa Bay, a victory that moves Dallas to 2-1 but also keeps the club perilously close to being "just another .500 team.'' "Over the years, we've score a lot of points in games and done it with an offense that was aesthetically pleasing, but we ended up losing the game,'' Jason Garrett told Troy Aikman. "Wins are hard to come by, so you take 'em when you can,'' Troy Aikman responded to Jason Garrett. And it's true. On a day when the Cowboys raised their five Super Bowl banners (enlarged versions of the old ones that once flew at Texas Stadium) and celebrated the 35th and 20th anniversary of the franchise's championships, Sunday served as a reminder that these aren't the '78 Cowboys of Doomsday and Roger Staubach or the '92 "How 'Bout Them Cowboys'' featuring a stifling defense and the Aikman-led offense. (Or even the '93 team that won a title with a scrappy brainiac named "Jason Garrett'' as Aikman's caddie). This is 2012 NFL Parity at its bestworst. Jason Witten's spleen helped Dallas to a 24-17 upset of the defending Super Bowl champion Giants in Week 1, and the Cowboys were heralded as "tough.'' A single cheap-shot Seahawks block in Week 2 was part of a 27-7 loss at Seattle, and the Cowboys were chided for being "soft.'' A win. A loss. So tough. Too soft. Which is it? Which is the real Cowboys? All of it. That's how Dallas is coming off an 8-8 record, how 20 NFL teams entered this weekend with 1-1 records, how the Cowboys since their last Super Bowl appearance entered the weekend with a notably balanced record of 121-121. Why do the Cowboys look like a .500 team? For the same reason pretty much everybody looks like a .500 team: Because they are. It certainly wasn't artistic,'' Garrett said, and hey, if that's what you're searching for, you need to exit the stadium immediately and find yourself a museum. Dallas linebacker and leader Sean Lee noted that every team is likely to have at least a handful of losses and that, "The best teams in the league learn from it and get better.'' For this week, anyway, the Cowboys do get credit for that. They are better in the standings, at least, despite missing three defensive starters to begin the game and then losing first-team safety Barry Church to a season-ending Achilles injury that could've left his defensive teammates wondering what else might crumble. "It's definitely a heart-breaker for me," Church told me. "I was definitely looking forward to leading our defense, being a contributor. But you know, circumstances happen. You've just got to move forward from it." Dallas' defense did just that. With cornerback Brandon Carr switching to safety (a position he hadn't played since his junior year in high school) and with Mike Jenkins re-emerging as a force at corner, it allowed Tampa Bay just 91 net yards passing the best effort by a Cowboys team since 2007, when the unfortunate Tavaris Jackson managed just 65 aerial yards for Minnesota. Meanwhile, Dallas' offense was a sputterfest. Quarterback Tony Romo is now 4-0 lifetime against the Bucs, but this one wasn't secured with the usual ease. Romo went 25-of-39 for 283 yards with no touchdowns, an interception and two lost two fumbles, the result of absorbing a battering behind a flawed offensive line. Receivers Miles Austin and Dez Bryant were sound, but tight end Jason Witten again has the dropsies, calling into question his confidence level as he tries to put the lacerated spleen problem in his past. "I don't want this to go by without talking about how great it feels really to win this game, with the way that our defense played and our ability to grind it out on the offensive side when nothing was easy," Romo said. "This is a very, very satisfying win, even though it'll kind of get lost in the shuffle as you move through the season sometimes, because of the way it looked. But these are the kinds of wins that you have to have. We've played better on offense before and lost football games. We've played better as a team sometimes with the way that it looks and lost games. But to win the game with the way that we did today really excites me and gives us a chance going forward." That's Romo talking like Aikman, the QB-turned-FOX voice. That's Romo talking like Garrett, the QB-turned-head coach. That's the NFL today: Any win merits excitement, anything over .500 gives you a chance.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
RELATED ARTICLES

Romo: Big hits part of playing QB in the NFL

ARLINGTON The Cowboys offensive line didn't do Tony Romo many favors in Sunday's home opener. Romo was sacked four times and hit hard after several throws. After the game, Romo said the 16-10 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers was one of the "most physically tough" games he's played in. He then joked that he'd probably be using some ice packs tonight....

Cowboys not as good as they think

NFL wins are not Maxim girls, meaning appearances do not matter quite as much when judging them. The virtues of the ugly ones are praised sometimes more so than the pretty ones, given attributes like determination and pluck when, in actuality, luck may be more apropos. So it was Sunday at JerryWorld. The aftermath of the Dallas Cowboys' 16-10 victory against Tampa Bay was filled...

Cowboys rule Jay Ratliff and Phil Costa out again, as well as Gerald Sensabaugh

As they were last week, the Cowboys will be without the middle of their offensive line and defensive line once again this week as center Phil Costa will miss with back problems and nose tackle Jay Ratliff will miss with an ankle problem. Costa left during their week 1 game against the Giants, while Ratliff has yet to play a snap this season after injuring himself in the preseason...

Dez Bryant's Need for Supervision Has Brought Era of Nanny Coaches to NFL

The Cowboys made a stir earlier this year when they announced that wide receiver Dez Bryant would be playing under a different set of team rules this season. Bryant had a curfew set up and his off-field entertainment choices curtailed by the team, which has been trying to find a way to keep Bryant from inhibiting himself in his free time so he can go back to being a downfield threat...

Monday Musings: 5 thoughts on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' loss to the Dallas Cowboys

1. Ever since Josh Freeman was drafted in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft, fans have debated whether or not they think he is a franchise quarterback. In 2010, he certainly looked the part. Last season, Freeman struggled and people starting to doubt his skills. This offseason, Freeman lost over 25 pounds and appeared more dedicated than ever to being a quality signal caller...

Replacement Ref Trips Up Cowboys Player with Hat

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Kevin Ogletree was tripped up in the end zone during today's game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers by an odd object. That object: a referee's hat. (GIF courtesy of Big Lead Sports) Yes, a replacement referee's hat thrown right into Ogletree's route slipped him up. Luckily for the Cowboys, Ogletree got right up and was unharmed, but...

Tony Romo takes helmet-to-helmet hit on Bucs sack (video)

Poor Tony Romo, not only did he get destroyed on this sack by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Gerald McCoy but he didn't even get a penalty for a helmet-to-helmet hit from the replacement officials:

VIDEO: Buccaneers Once Again Play Hard During Cowboys Kneel Down

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers showed that their defense means business, even if the other team is in their victory formation.During the Buccaneers game against the Dallas Cowboys Sunday afternoon, the Bucs defense once again tried to blitz during the Cowboys victory formation stance.With only a few seconds left on the clock and with the Cowboys with the 16-10 lead, Buccaneers head coach...

Kevin Olgetree Slips On Replacement Referee’s Hat

The replacement refs have been under incredible scrutiny for their performance in the first few games of this NFL season, and this latest incident won’t help anything. Kevin Ogletree of the Dallas Cowboys slipped during a play on a replacement refs cap, which was thrown in order to mark the fact that a WR has gone out of bounds. Just when you think it can’t get worse… via...

Mucho Frio: Tony Romo

I drafted me for my fantasy team Juan… After lighting up the Giants in week one, Romo has looked abysmal in his last 2 outings.  Playing at home vs the Bucs D that Eli Manning turned into Swiss cheese last week, has me thinking Romo is ready to go for 300/3 and get back on track.  Not so much. In his last 2 games Romo has failed to throw for 300 yards, has only 1 TD, and has...

Defense rises up

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Tony Romo was satisfied even after being sacked four times and turning the ball over three times in the Dallas Cowboys' home opener.

Bucs lose Adrian Clayborn for the year

The Bucs confirmed today what was feared and speculated after yesterday’s loss to the Cowboys. Defensive end Adrian Clayborn will be out for the remainder of the season after tearing ligaments in his right knee after his leg got caught between an offensive lineman and a Tony Romo sack. Though not specified, Clayborn may have injured multiple ligaments on Sunday. Multiple reports...
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.