Monday, December 31, 2007
I hate to say I knew this was coming, but I did. I may have only seen a 10 point Redskins win, but this was a formality. It happens. Teams can play half-inspired and get away with it from time to time. If they are home. If they are not playing a divisional rival. If they are not playing on the road at a divisional rival who must win to enter the playoffs, who may also be playing to honor a teammate who died early this month. Sorry, kids, but this one was doomed before the Cowboys hopped on the Airplane.
Which is why I am not overly concerned. Would I have loved 16 quality weeks of football in succession? Sure! But, the simple fact of the matter is this: they could not match the intensity of the desperate Washington Redskins yesterday, and therefore finished their season in a less-than-impressive fashion, with a 27-6 thrashing. But let us remember a few things. 13-3. #1 seed. And, what appeared to be a reasonable health situation heading into January 13th. In a few days, everyone will regain their perspective, and it will be time to prepare for the first playoff home game in Texas Stadium since Jake Plummer and the Cardinals rolled in here in 1998, and a chance to win a playoff game of any kind for the first time in 11years. Let’s all relax, and prepare for some random notes from a very forgettable day in Washington:
· The completion record? Are we honestly risking a wincing Tony Romo for a 2nd tier record like that? Who cares who has the completion record? Touchdowns is big. Yards isn’t bad. But nobody has ever cared about a completion. Think about it, whether it be a game, season, or career, when have you heard any talk about the completion numbers somebody put up? Who cares, Wade? Why you would even consider putting Romo back on the field after he appeared shaken heading to halftime is completely beyond me. But, now he has it. The 335th completion of 2007. Wonderful. The Cowboys are really lucky he didn’t get hurt. I just don’t understand the logic of this one.
· Mike Sellers is a quality FB. He blocks the way all of the classic FB’s did. I really like his game for Washington.
· I am not overly worried about Tony Romo. If Owens is back, Romo is fine. But, his last 3 games of the season, 22.2, 81.2, and 34.9 were his QB ratings. This after a 7 game streak of ratings over 100.0, and his season average fell below 100. He obviously isn’t crazy about entering the playoffs like that.
· It could be said that you wouldn’t be too desperate to play Washington in the playoffs. Whether we want to believe it or not, Todd Collins appears to have a real nice grasp of what the Redskins hope to do offensively. He knows Al Saunders’ strategy, and it shows. Then, they have a powerful tandem of Runners, and a few dangerous Wide Receivers. I still think I would rather play them than have to beat the New York Giants a 3rd time. That is my “I would like to avoid this team” request. Either way, for the 2nd straight year, the NFC East has put both wild card teams in the playoffs. It surely speaks to the strength of the division that the other three NFC divisions have not had a wildcard team since 2005.
· Roy Williams had another tough day. Was it his inability to cover Chris Cooley or his inability to tackle Clinton Portis that bothered you more?
· You knew the game was going to be odd when Marcus Spears got a sack on the first possession. Talk about Bizarro World. His 2nd sack helped him catch Tank Johnson and Jason Hatcher for 7th on the team in sacks. Not quite Harvey Martin.
· Joe Buck tells us that 6 of the last 8 #1 seeds have made the Super Bowl out of the NFC. How could we forget the 2002 Eagles and the 2003 Eagles, losing to Tampa Bay and Carolina in consecutive enjoyable Championship collapses for our friends in Philly? Otherwise, form has held. Sure seems like the table is set for the feast.
· I like my superstar QB not to wear gloves. Just a personal preference. And while I nit-pick, I also don’t care for my superstar QB to be wearing an I-pod in warm ups. Love you, Tony, but for a QB, those two things are like wearing sunglasses indoors and wearing your blue-tooth in a movie.
· Terry Glenn had a pretty rough 4 plays. LaRon Landry knocked him silly on a play where Glenn thought Landry was dirty and going for his knee. To me, it looks like Landry was just trying to avoid Fred Smoot on a wet field. Look below for yourself. Then he was beat to the slant by Shawn Springs on Romo’s interception. I am quite sure that is not what Dallas had in mind for Terry’s return.
· DeMarcus Ware vs. Chris Samuels was quite a battle. Both guys looked good at times, but in a matchup like that, Samuels has to be perfect or his QB gets blind-sided, and Ware is sure getting good at the sack and strip. I am not sure anyone can match his ferocity right now. But, for what it is worth, at LT, I enjoy Chris Samuels and his quality.
· Witten was in the game in the 4th Quarter. Please explain that. Once again, 100 catches would have been nice, but let’s accomplish our accomplishments in the context of the season, and not risk players that cannot be risked.
· Where was the running game yesterday? 8 running plays in the 1st half? I expected the ground and pound, and it did not happen at all. Of course, when they were running with such horrendous results, I do understand Jason Garrett looking elsewhere in the playbook.
· How is Terrell Owens feeling? Say your prayers.
· Let’s not get carried away. This is not the end of the world. 13-3 is a very good year. It can’t be a great year, though, until we see what they do in January. Stay tuned….