From the Armchair: Dallas Cowboys, Week 7
I can sum up Sunday's Cowboys-Eagles matchup with one word; U-G-L-Y!
Given that the game matched two mediocre, 3-3 teams in a battle for first place in the dismally bad NFC Easy (sic), I should have expected a game like this. However, the poor overall performance of both teams in the Cowboys 17-3 victory stunned even an old cynic like me.
How bad was it? Let's start with the fact that the allegedly prolific offense installed by Eagles coach Chip Kelly and the Cowboys multi-pronged offensive weapons combined for a whopping three points in the first half, with Dallas notching the field goal with 3:17 left. Granted, the Cowboys were missing RB DeMarco Murray and Philly was without spark plug QB Michael Vick, but the offensive ineptitude on display in this game was just painful to watch. How bad were both offenses? Consider that, just two weeks after Dallas and Denver combined for one punt in their game, the Cowboys and Eagles punted a combined 18 times. Yea, that's why I watch the NFL, to see punts! Punts, punts, punts!!!!!
With that caveat, the Dallas defense did look good against a Vick-less and hapless Eagles offense. The Dallas D kept Eagles backup QB Nick Foles on the run for most of the day before knocking him out with a concussion at the end of the third quarter. In the fourth, the Cowboys defense feasted on Philly's third stringer, rookie and former USC pretty boy QB Matt Barkley, who tossed three interceptions in his 20 attempts.
Offensively, it was an average day for Tony Romo, who went 28-47 for 317 yards. In addition, Joseph Randle stepped in passably for the injured Murray, picking up a respectable 65 yards on 19 carries. Overall however, the offense maintained its season-long pattern of sleepwalking through two or more quarters and the result was another low output for a unit that seemingly has shown up for four full quarters in just two of its seven games so far. And the result was a desultory 17 points for a squad that somehow came in averaging 31 points a game.
If the Cowboys take anything from the victory against the Eagles, it's a road win against a division rival and first place in what's shaping up to be an incomparably lame division. Beyond that, I hope NFL Films destroys every copy of this game so that today's ugliness never has to be seen again.
Next up for the Cowboys; a trip to Motown to visit the 4-3 Lions.