Cowboys Haven’t Impressed Everyone

Dallas CowboysIt’s probably a mistake to look outside of Cowboys circles for feedback on how the team has done or is doing, but a few stories have popped up lately that aren’t quite as optimistic as what we are hearing from the Cowboys’ faithful.

This is from the Washington Times, noting that the Cowboys did not draft for needs:

Dallas and Green Bay dominated the NFC from 1992 to 1997, winning five conference titles and four Super Bowls during that stretch. But since then there have been as many seasons without the Cowboys or Packers in the playoffs (two) as there have been postseason victories.

And though each team still owns its state’s heart, their first-round picks in last month’s draft weren’t greeted with hosannas.

Not only did the Cowboys pass on popular Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn, further tying their destiny to second-year starter Tony Romo, they didn’t land a young receiver although starting wideouts Terrell Owens and Terry Glenn will both be 33 this season. Instead, Dallas took Purdue defensive end Anthony Spencer, its fourth front seven first-rounder in three years.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said the Dallas braintrust had only 21 players rated as worthy of being first-rounders, which is why the Cowboys traded down from No. 22 and picked up Cleveland’s first-rounder in 2008. Said new coach Wade Phillips: “We did not have to draft because of need.”

They just need to win a playoff game for the first time since 1996, let alone Jones’ fourth Super Bowl.

Peter Schrager from Fox says this of the Cowboys’ offseason:

There’s a new regime in Dallas, as the Wade Phillips era starts in 2007. Whether this is a positive or a negative is yet to be seen. At the very least, there’s new blood in the locker room. Roster-wise, the Cowboys picked up a lot of new talent in the off-season. Ken Hamlin will join Roy Williams for a pretty lethal starting safety combo, and offensive tackle Leonard Davis — a former top pick of the Arizona Cardinals — comes to Dallas with a lot to prove. Brad Johnson joins the Cowboys as a reliable backup quarterback who will help guide Tony Romo’s growth as well. In the draft, Dallas scooped up the guy they wanted all along in Anthony Spencer, while picking up the Browns 2008 first round pick in the process. Cowboys fans chanted “Jerry Jones! Jerry Jones! Jerry Jones!” after the Brady Quinn trade. The Dallas faithful has reason to be happy.

Biggest gain: Leonard Davis, OL
Biggest loss: Jason Fabini, OL

Are they in better shape than they were in January? It depends. As horribly as the season ended for Dallas, they did make the playoffs and came a bad snap and some luck short of a shot at the Bears. They play seven games in primetime next year — we’ll have plenty of opportunities to determine whether they’re better than the ’06 version.

And here is a somewhat disheartening piece about former third-round draft pick Stephen Peterman, now the starting right guard for the Detroit Lions:

A third-round draft pick by the Dallas Cowboys three years ago, Peterman never got settled in Texas and was released by them last season.

He was signed to Detroit’s practice squad and played in the final three games, starting two. Peterman was so impressive that the Lions told him from the first day of off-season workouts this year that he would be practicing with the starters.

Peterman was in the mix for a starting job in Dallas during his rookie season but tore a ligament in his right knee in the final preseason game. He was never in the plans of head coach Bill Parcells after that.

“I don’t know, man, it was weird. It was a weird deal,” Peterman said. “I went through a lot of frustrations there and they kind of turned their back on me. I think he felt that once I got hurt, I wasn’t ever going to come back so his plans went to other places. Coach Marinelli gave me a shot here and everything’s been great since I left there.”

Peterman believes a minor injury at the start of camp in Dallas might have put him on the wrong path with Parcells.

“I broke a finger on the first day of camp and Parcells said I wouldn’t miss practice and I casted it up,” Peterman said. “Then I tore my knee up and I think he thought I was injury prone or something and I just had some bad luck there. Things have changed here and I’ll never forget that game, going back there and winning.”

Peterman had an outstanding game as the Lions stunned the Cowboys 38-31 in last season’s final game. It also turned out to be the final regular-season game for Parcells in Dallas, as he left the team after they were eliminated in the playoffs.

“I remember after the game him saying it was his lowest low of being Dallas Cowboys head coach,” Peterman said. “For guys like (former Cowboys) Dan (Campbell) and Aveion (Cason), guys they kicked out of there and said `We don’t want you anymore’ — to finish his last regular-season game like that, it was pretty good.”

Not that Peterman has bad memories of everybody in Dallas. It was strength and conditioning coach Joe Juraszek who helped Peterman bounce back after his knee injury.

“I still talk to him once a day because he told me that if I trusted him, he’d get me back on the field. He said `Just listen to me. It’s going to take a while, but I’ll get you back on the field,’ ” Peterman said. “For about two years, I lived in the weight room doing rehab and he brought me back as a better player than I was coming out of college.”

Romo: Still Master of the Second-Person Narrative

Tony RomoWikipedia describes a second-person narrative as follows:

Second-person narration is a narrative technique in which the protagonist or another main character is referred to by employment of second-person personal pronouns and other kinds of addressing forms, for example the English second-person pronoun “you”.

This brings us to our friend Romo, who somewhat famously escorted Carrie Underwood to the Country Music Awards earlier this week. According to a story in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:

The moment all his teammates wanted to talk about was Underwood giving Romo her purse when she accepted an award.

“You have to help out when you can,” Romo said with a smile.

“I am just a secondary protocol there. I am there to do a job and it was to hold the purse. Anytime you do stuff like that you are going to take a ribbing. It goes with the job.”

Enough about the Underwood mess, but if there were ever a masterful use of the second-person narrative, that would have to be it. I mean, deflecting a comment about holding his date’s purse by shifting seamlessly to the second-person point of view? Any time you see or hear something like that, you have to admire the guy.

A Big Page of Cowboys News

Nobody may be any more interested in this than anyone is about the history of Cowboys kick holders, but I’ve become a bit addicted to this site called Pageflakes (and no, this is not an ad). I created a page that has RSS feeds from a number of different sources. If anyone knows of a […]

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A Somewhat Incomplete History of Dallas Kick Holders

I read in the last “short shot” in an article by Josh Ellis of that there is a three-man battle for kick holder on this year’s squad. Here is the blurb: Special teams coach Bruce Read said receiver Jerheme Urban figures into the holder competition in addition to Brad Johnson and punter Mat McBriar. […]

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Leaner (and Meaner?) Linebackers

The Dallas Morning News blog, which has provided outstanding coverage of the mini-camp thus far, had an interesting blurb about the Cowboys’ linebackers today: ** The linebackers all look like they lost a bunch of pounds. Bradie James said he played part of last year around 265 pounds but is now 245. Akin Ayodele is […]

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Owens Shows Up Not Only in Headlines, but also at the Mini-Camp!

Terrell Owens continues to find himself in the headlines, though he really hasn’t done much to find himself there. First, there was a post on the AOL blog indicating that Owens could be a great teammate when he wants to be. Please visit that site if you are dying to know why. Second, Tom Orsborn […]

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MOP Award for 1969: Dennis Homan

I received an email last evening from a former reader who indicated that my blog (or recent post, perhaps) is “sTUPID!” Well, at the heart of this blog’s stupidity is my feature known as the Most Obscure Player Award… so now is as good a time as any for our final installment of the 1960s. […]

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An Epilogue to the Insanity Piece

Yesterday, we discussed my lack of enthusiam with the Cowboys’ string of outside linebackers and defensive ends. I am also going to withhold judgment about all of the dealing until I see what type of pick we get from the trade with Cleveland. Well, a person named Andrew Perloff from posted a 2008 Mock […]

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That’s the Whole Point of This Draft: Insanity

Tim Cowlishaw had a piece yesterday that focused on insanity. His point, especially as it relates to the Cowboys: I was recently reminded that it was Albert Einstein who said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.” Actually, I thought it was a phrase I […]

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Video: Defensive Highlights from 2006

I found this video clip showing highlights of the Cowboys’ defense in 2006. It was made by the guys at Cowboys Vids. Excellent stuff. Tweet

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