The Cowboys got the season started with a bang, as they threw and ran their way right through Cleveland in dominating fashion. The final score read 28-10, as the offense racked up nearly 500 yards of offensive force despite the "Dawg Pound" trying to do anything they could to distract. A few important points we here at DallasDedicated want to go in depth on:
-Is Marion Barber's injury a telling reminder if his risky running style?
Yes, Barber's injury is not serious. However, what worries me is that this will happen more often. Barber is getting more carries than last season now that he is the lone starter, and his powerful running style makes him far more prone to injury than most backs in the league. He loves contact, and he loves hitting even more. Let's just hope this is a separate, random case and Barber will be fine. The good news is this...
-The backup of all backups: Felix Jones
He was impressive in preseason, but the Razorback rookie was remarkable yesterday. After Barber was put on the bench in the 3rd quarter, Felix Jones earned that rookie signing bonus. His very first drive of his NFL career was an 11-yard touchdown run. He finished with 9 carries for 62 yards. While Barber is a power back that stiff arms and bulldozes his way down the field, Jones cuts and jukes past defenders who barely see him flash by. Not many teams have tandem backs that play so well off each other. The red-headed playmaker Jason Garrett's mouth must have been salivating as he watched the first of many Felix Jones' highlights. Felix will certainly get more carries Monday night against Philly with the coaching staff being safe with Barber's injured ribs.
-Tony, Tony, Tony
Romo matched the hype surrounding him, as he went 24-of-32 for 320 yards. Not only that, but he was sacked zero times and had countless plays where he had all day in the pocket to pick apart the Browns. The offensive line let up a little after halftime, and Romo's chin paid for it. After being sandwiched between two defensive backs, it appeared at first as if Romo might have to be taken out. He grimaced, stood up, and continued to dominate. After the game, where Romo received 13 stitches, Jason Witten called Romo's play "the best game the QB has played in his 3 years as a Cowboy." While bumps and bruises have made their way into the Cowboys locker room, let's look at the big picture. Nate Burleson is out for the season, Vince Young is out 2-4 weeks, Brodie Croyle is out indefinitely, and pretty boy Tom Brady suffered what could be a season ending injury. Just to be safe, the Cowboys signed quarterback Brooks Bollinger, giving the 'Boys 2 solid passers behind Romo in case of a dreaded injury.
Terence Newman was out, Pacman Jones was in his first game since December of 2006, yet the defense stood strong. The score at one point was tied at 7 and things looked like they were heading towards a shootout. Yet, the defense got their act together and quickly ended all confidence Cleveland had. The Browns ended the night with under 100 yards rushing and only 114 yards passing (compared to 167 and 320 for Dallas). The biggest key to the defense was how they shut down wideout Braylon Edwards, who had just 2 catches for a measly 14 yards. Edwards recently signed a contract extension and is said to be the most important piece to the Browns' offensive puzzle. Dallas didn't let anyone get in their way.
-Owens has a body odor problem?
Back in 2004, some Cleveland fans from New York came up with the genius sign that read "T.O. has B.O." when Owens played for Philly. T.O. torched the Browns that day, even slamming the football against the sign after a touchdown reception. Cleveland fans thought they should try again. The sign was back yesterday, and Owens once again had a great game. Not only do the Browns have the most uncreative mascot and logo, the fans are even more lame.