The loss to the Chiefs hurt. It was probably as exhausting to watch as it was to play. But before you call our troubles typical and close the book on the season pre-maturely, I invite you to read the following reasons as to why Dallas Cowboys fans should keep their chins up and look excitedly ahead to the rest of the season.
1) Perhaps it shouldn’t be any consolation, but it is: the rest of the NFC East lost. Of course on the flip-side, it means that a win would have given us a nice jump on the division. The fact of the matter is, though, the standings are the same as they were after week 1.
2) The run defense was excellent. Anytime you hold Jamaal Charles to a 3.4 YPC avg. (career is an unreal 5.7), you’ve done a good job. Granted, he hurt us in the passing game with 48 yards and a TD, but even that was on 8 receptions. He had double the catches of the next leading receiver on the Chiefs. All things considered, the Dallas D should be proud.
3) Anthony Spencer and Brian Waters had solid debuts. Two of the team’s most crucial pieces showed that, though not 100% ready yet, they are well on their way.
In addition, some players look to have made big strides since last season. Barry Church looks more mature and refined every game; hopefully he’ll stay healthy. The same could be said about Dan Bailey, who cleanly knocked in a 51 and 53-yarder: feats that weren’t so guaranteed last season Jason Garret is rightfully displaying more confidence in the young Kicker.
4) With the exceptions of Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley in Week 8, we will not face as good a DT as Dontari Poe. This is not to say the O-Line will get off easy, but with a rookie Center, alongside a second year UFA and a 36-year old one year removed from retirement at the Guard positions, it’s nice to know our interior won’t be tested quite so often.
5) The call on Morris Claiborne. In Little League, I was taught you should play so well that your fate is not left in the hands of an official. The Dallas Cowboys should be taught the same lesson. Several opportunities came and went, so we should not have been in such a precarious spot come the fourth quarter. That being said, most would agree that Morris Claiborne was flagged unfairly, and such a call had a direct impact on the Cowboys’ chances.
6) This offense needs time to mesh. Sure, most of the players have been together for a few years, but the play-calling is in someone else’s hands and Tony Romo is clearly not yet comfortable with his new duties. Watching him audible to screens on 3rd down, and seeing Dez and Murray get confused on numerous occasions was downright painful. They all need to work out the kinks, and Tony needs one or two big performances under his belt before he could settle down. The weapons are there, now what’s needed is trust.
7) Speaking of Dez - Dez Bryant. WOW. He was sort of quiet after the first half, but still – watching that display of talent had to make every fan feel good.
A win yesterday would have meant volumes to the team and its fans. However, yesterday’s loss does not indicate the re-emergence of typical Cowboys woes. If this were week 9 or 10, then maybe. But after week 2, there is ample opportunity to correct mistakes and gain the confidence necessary to go far. The team is not perfect, but all would agree: we’re miles ahead than this time last year.
Be sure to comment below with your takeaways from the game, or with any thoughts on the season ahead!