Dallas Cowboys at Green Bay Packers: Standouts, Notes, and Observations


The Catch? Whatever catch do you mean? All Dallas Cowboys fans obviously know about the catch (or I suppose it should be known as the “overturned catch”). Our resident “lawyer”, Stephen Kenny did a pretty good job breaking it down earlier today.

In order to get some other game observations in, I’m going to skip over my analysis of “the catch” today and look at it more tomorrow once the dust has settled a little more. Even without the end-of-game travesty, there is still plenty to discuss regarding yesterday’s game.

Here we go, one last time this season:

Leaving plays and opportunities on the field is what separates a good team from a great team. I’ve always made it a point to single out bad plays by the Cowboys, after wins and losses alike, because the missed opportunities matter – even retrospectively. That is all too true today. Late in the game the Packers fumbled a kick return that would have given the Cowboys the ball inside the red zone. James Hanna fell on the ball but mishandled it and GAVE it back to the Packers. The Cowboys were already up and could have made it a two possession game even with a field goal. Instead, they game the ball back and the Packers responded with their game-winning drive.

  • Ronald Leary looks slow and lazy for much of the day. Julius Peppers made him look like a clown, but when you really look at it, Peppers was making everyone look like clowns. Peppers may have been the best player on the field for both teams. He was absolutely great. Clay Mathews, once again, pretended to be absolutely great.
  • The Packers were completely locked in on Dez pressing with the CB, dropping a LB for slants and intermediate, and using a safety deep. The Cowboys simply waited for single coverage and took advantage. Unfortunately that was overturned.

    More from Sports Dallas Fort-Worth

    FB Tyler Clutts

    wasn’t getting much push lead-blocking. It’s not extraordinarily cold but some Dallas Cowboys were playing like it early. Clutts and many of the Cowboys improved as the game progressed but they looked pretty contact-shy early in the game.

  • On the Cowboys first TD, Clay Matthews went low and VERY LATE at Romos legs. After receiving a beneficial PI no-call it’s tough to argue a ton about a questionable no-call here, but this is a call that’s made 90% of the time and if it happened to Aaron Rodgers, I guarantee you’d see a whole lot of yellow flying.
  • Popup kickoffs and squib kicks are only a smart move if your kicker can’t muster the leg to send the ball out of the endzone. You have to assume that’s the case with Dan Bailey kicking in cold temps because spotting the Packers the ball between the 30-40 on multiple occasions is a pretty crappy strategy.
  • Matching up JJ Wilcox on Randall Cobb is asinine. Thank goodness Rodgers struggled with accuracy. Later the Cowboys matched Patmon with Cobb. Cowboys fail. Orlando Scandrick should have been shadowing Cobb all day.
  • Blitzing Scandrick was a waste of time. When Scandy meets HBs he rarely tries to make a play. He pulls up and receives his block. Scandy is way too valuable in coverage to be wasted blitzing.

  • Joe Buck mentioned that TE Jason Witten had 22 catches for first downs during the regular season. In what seemed as a down year for the future HOFer, is nothing but. He ranks as one of the very best blocking TEs in the NFL and is still every bit as important in the pass-receiving side of things. He can’t break a tackle but the man is a beast and we’re lucky to have him.
  • It’s inexcusable to go into halftime up by 4 after driving deep into Green Bay territory up by 7 with less than 2 minutes. The inability to continue a drive, the false start and the blocked kick are all unacceptable in games like this. The Cowboys seemed determined to fail early in the game.

  • The Cowboys were not fearing Aaron Rodgers arm (minus his legs) very much. They even stacked 10 on the line against a Packers O facing 3rd and 1.
  • Eddie Lacy was having his way with the Cowboys defense (not surprising since the Cowboys are a poor run-stopping team and they were particularly focused on coverage this afternoon).
  • I said it the start of start of the season, and I’ll say a big I TOLD YOU SO today – Jason Garrett refuses to hold players accountable and DeMarco Murray is proof. He should have been repeatedly benched and shamed early in the season when he was fumbling on a weekly basis. His carelessness continued all year with no repercussions. As I said then, “it’s all fun and games until he fumbles in the playoffs when it matters the most.” His fumble lost points for the Cowboys and the Packers scored points as a result. Very costly.
  • Joseph Randle isn’t nearly the bulldozer or pass-blocker that Murray is, but he’s much faster (on the field, not straight timed speeds). I’ve been very clear saying that DeMarco Murray is mostly (85%) replaceable next season, but Randle makes it easier to digest.
  • Gotta love it when Romo gets hurt to the point of lameness, the Packers recognize it and stack the box with all 11, and DeMarco Murray and the O-Line make all 11 look like fools as he breaks a long run on the edge.

    Our pass-rush looked lazy most of the day. It’s normal for every pass-rusher to take plays off. It’s not fun to hear but it’s the reality. On a couple plays, the Cowboys pass-rushers appeared to all take the same play off at the same time. That’s not a good thing especially on a line which boasts high energy and a deep rotation.

  • I’m not sure why you have a deep safety if he can’t play safety (Wilcox). You allow man-press up front because you trust your safety. Wilcox has been good and has still has “great” potential, but he’s far from trustworthy.