Sunday, August 17, 2008

Faith in the Preseason? Hopefully Not.

The Dallas Cowboys came up short again in their second of too many preseason games last night against Denver. Outclassed from the beginning, the 'Boys lost 23-13. The first team--which looked stellar against San Diego last week--gave up 14 points against the Broncos, while not scoring any. Needless to say, there were not many positives the coaching staff will take away from this game. (But there's always the cheerleaders...)

Tony Romo played a solid game, and was able to connect with Terrell Owens multiple times. The two of them on the same page already is a great sign of things to come. Surprise standout Miles Austin continued his impressive outings...until he was injured. The report on Austin is a sprained MCL, and he will be out the rest of training camp, and possibly even week 1. This is great news if you are Sam Hurd, but if you aren't, this is a minor setback. Overall, every drive stalled and the unit was unable to put anything tangible together.

As well, return defense continues to haunt Dallas. Missed tackles are plaguing special teams. Return defense was again pitiful; however, Stanback and Scandrick both produced returns of 35+ yards.

The defense was sub-par, to say the least. A complete 180 from last week, the "D" was slow, sloppy and not together. Adam Jones was a lone bright spot, his performance dramatically improved from last week--as he said it would.

The question on every fan's mind, now, is how indicative are the preseason games of regular season performance?

Past Performances:

2007: Preseason: 2-2
Regular Season: 13-3

2006: Preseason: 3-0-1
Regular Season: 9-7

2005: Preseason: 3-1
Regular Season: 9-7

2004: Preseason: 3-1
Regular Season: 6-10

Thus, recent Cowboys history proves that the season-before-the-real-season is essentially meaningless. It will have no carry over affect on the team. If that isn't enough to convince you, look at the dominant teams from that past few years:

-Similarly, last seasons undefeated (until the Super Bowl) New England Patriots went 2-2 in the preseason, dropping their first two games (noticing a correlation?).
-In 2006, the Super Bowl Champion Indianapolis Colts went 1-3 in the preseason.
-2004 champs New England went 1-3.

By some odd, unexplainable force, the NFL preseason gives the fan no inside view on what the regular season may hold. When teams ride high in the preseason, fans love to point out that it is a sign of things to come; when a team is not so successful, fans are quick to point out that the preseason holds no meaning. So, until the season kicks off, the speculation must be put on hold.

In other news, we here at Dallas Dedicated would like to congratulate Michael Phelps on his amazing feat of 8 gold medals, solidifying himself in Olympic lore for generations to come, and passing the great Mark Spitz.


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