Dallas Cowboys: New York Jets

SMU pro day observations

March, 27, 2013
3/27/13
8:52
PM ET
UNIVERSITY PARK, Texas -- There were numerous NFL scouts and one head coach, Rex Ryan of the New York Jets, at SMU's pro day. Here's our observations from Wednesday's events:

*One of the biggest surprises of the day was Cincinnati Bengals defensive line coach Jay Hayes and Ryan working out defensive end Margus Hunt at outside linebacker. The coaches had Hunt drop back in deep coverage to intercept passes. Hunt said he didn't drop back much last season at SMU, but thought he performed well in the drill. Hunt didn't run the 40 or bench press but measured at 6-8 and 283 pounds and has a 82 1/2 inch wingspan. He did other position drills, such as pass rush and the cones, and looked quick and showed a good burst. Hunt said he'll attend the Cowboys' Dallas Day coming up next month. Hunt added he's got some workouts planned with some NFL teams.

*Toward the end of the workout, most if not all of the NFL scouts in attendance marveled at a kicker. Two Cowboys' scouts, led by Henry Sroka, took charge of the kicking workout of Jose Carlos Maltos. He measured at 5-9, 201 pounds. Maltos made kicks of 35, 40 and 45 yards against the wind at Ford Stadium. He also made a 56 yarder, with Sroka as the holder, with the wind. He made a hurry up 35 yard field goal attempt into the wind. He also did a good job on kickoffs. He send one kick 10-yards deep, against the wind, into the end zone and two others of five and two yards deep. Maltos has an interesting story. A few years ago, Maltos tried to enroll at SMU but coach June Jones told him to attend junior college then comeback for admission. It seems now, Maltos is going to play professionally.

*Quarterback Kyle Padron is someone who could be a camp quarterback for the Cowboys. Padron, 6-3, 220 pounds, was invited to Dallas Day. Padron has a good arm and can grasp an offense pretty quick. Padron throws a sharp ball but needs to prove to NFL teams he's got the arm strength to make deep throws.

*Defensive lineman Aaron Davis impressed the scouts with his bench press. He lifted 225 pounds 34 times. Davis is 6-2 3/8 and 291 pounds. His arm length is 32 inches and his wingspan is 76 7/8. Davis displayed some speed as well. He ran a 4.75 and a 4.76 in the 40. In the pass rush drills, Davis was smooth and didn't seem to have any problems.

*Ja' Gared Davis, an outside linebacker, didn't do well on the bench presses. He lifted 225 pounds just 14 times. He's got to improve that moving forward, because NFL teams want strong, quick outside linebackers. Davis, 6-0, 238 pounds, has a 78 1/2 wingspan.

*Among the NFL teams in attendance: Houston, New York Jets, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Indianapolis, Seattle, Oakland, Jacksonville and New Orleans. ... Former Washington State, Texas A&M< Pittsburgh and Mississippi State coach Jackie Sherrill was in attendance. ... The SMU wide receivers put forth some slow 40 times. Austin Fuller: 4.90 and 4.78 and Darius Johnson, a slot receiver, whom June Jones likes, ran 4.68 and 4.59. ... Keep an eye out for fullback Zach Line. He ran an impressive 4.70 and 4.65 for a fullback.

Texas pro day observations

March, 26, 2013
3/26/13
4:21
PM ET
AUSTIN -- The University of Texas held its annual pro day Tuesday. Here are some observations from the event:

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Calvin Watkins joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett from the Texas Longhorns' pro day to discuss potential Cowboys draft pick Kenny Vaccaro, Vince Young and if any other pro prospects stood out.

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  • Safety Kenny Vaccaro had an impressive day. He didn't run the 40 because of a hip flexor injury, but he displayed a burst, lateral movement and quickness while performing position drills for Cincinnati Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer. Vaccaro said he's studied various defenses, including the Tampa 2, and is getting ready for the NFL game from a mental standpoint. Vaccaro said he was disappointed he couldn't run the 40, but indicated that he has run it in the low 4.40s during training. Vaccaro injured the hip while working out but re-injured it during his drill session with the Cowboys last week. After three drills, Vaccaro shut it down so he wouldn't further injure himself. Vacarro said his goal is to be the first safety taken in the draft.

  • Defensive end Alex Okafor needed a solid pro day to prove to NFL scouts that he's healthy and worthy of a Day 2 draft selection. He declined the bench press, standing on his combine numbers of 21 times at 225 pounds, but he ran a 4.88 and a 4.96 in the 40 and was concerned about being too stiff when he worked on his individual drills. Okafor ran through some of the drills smoothly and looked comfortable, but he still needs some work. Okafor said he believes he can play defensive end in a 4-3 or outside linebacker in a 3-4. Weight could be an issue. He came in at 262 pounds and might have to pick up more bulk to play end.

  • Vince Young looked slim and seemed to be in good spirits during his pro day. Most, if not all, of his throws were tight spirals and he displayed good arm strength. It seemed that when he threw to a variety of receivers inside and outside, he didn't have that funky shot-put motion. Young is throwing more traditionally and no longer appears to be dropping his elbow low when he throws.

  • Running back D.J. Moore ran the fastest 40 time of the prospective draft picks in 4.41 and 4.38. One negative: Size. He's listed at 5-foot-9, but he measured at 5-foot-7, 175 pounds. That's not to say little guys can't play in the NFL, but it will be hard for him to get significant playing time at running back unless he impresses an NFL team during training camp. He might be a solid return guy on the next level.

  • Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin measured in at 5-foot-9, 177 pounds -- good size for a slot receiver. He didn't run the 40, however his three tries at the vertical jump were 41, 42 and 42 inches. Goodwin has the speed it seems to make some plays from the slot at the next level. He just needs to make sure he can be a consistent player.

  • Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin attended the pro day. The Cowboys had two scouts, and Denver, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Houston, Miami, Kansas City, Oakland, Cleveland, the New York Jets and San Diego also had reps in attendance. ... Texas coach Mack Brown and former running back Ricky Williams were in attendance. ... Most scouts will either go to LSU's pro day Wednesday or SMU's.
  • The first day of free agency is over and things will probably slow down a little on Day 2. With that, we review what we heard, saw and talked about Tuesday night and preview what could happen down the line.

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    Randy Galloway and Matt Mosley discuss the latest free-agency moves going on around the NFL.

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    The loss of John Phillips: The Cowboys lost their backup tight end to the San Diego Chargers on Tuesday. Phillips was part of that dreadful 2009 class that produced very little for the Cowboys. Only free agent linebacker Victor Butler remains, and he's drawn interest from the New York Jets. Losing Phillips isn't a big deal because James Hanna has more upside as a solid pass-catching tight end. The Cowboys are in need of a blocking tight end, and this is where drafting someone in the late rounds could be important.

    Chase Blackburn vs. Kevin Burnett: The Cowboys released backup inside linebacker Dan Connor because he refused to take a pay cut. The Cowboys are in the market for another one and like middle linebacker Blackburn, who started 15 games last season for the New York Giants at middle linebacker. He finished second on the Giants with 97 tackles and had eight tackles for loss and seven quarterback hits. He also had three sacks and six pass breakups. If signed, Blackburn, an eight-year pro, would be a nice backup for Sean Lee at the inside linebacker spot. But what about Burnett? The former Cowboys linebacker was released by the Miami Dolphins on Tuesday and might be a nice pickup to start at that vacant outside linebacker position. Burnett, who started 16 games for the Dolphins last season at one of the outside linebacker positions in the Dolphins' 3-4 scheme, would like a return to Dallas. He was credited with 109 total tackles (second on the team), picked up 2 1/2 sacks, five tackles for loss and five quarterback hits. Who would you rather have, Blackburn or Burnett?

    Martellus Bennett goes to Chicago: The tight end signed a four-year, $20 million deal with the Chicago Bears. He's come a long way since his days in Dallas, when he fumed at times for not getting enough passes thrown his way. Bennett had an excellent season for the Giants and, while they wanted him to return, the Bears had a need at the position. One of the biggest problems with Bennett in Dallas was his lack of maturity and the Cowboys' inability to know how to use him. Bennett's career is summed up this way in Dallas: He caught four touchdown passes his rookie season (2008) and none the next three seasons. He caught five TD passes during his one year with the Giants. He's a good blocking tight end, something the Cowboys need, and he's athletic enough to make plays on the field. We'll see how Bennett does with Jay Cutler.

    Jenkins and Jones drawing interest: Free agent cornerback Mike Jenkins and running back Felix Jones didn't have any visits the first day of free agency. But with the biggest day of this period over with, both are starting to draw interest. The former first-round picks, especially Jones, need to prove to NFL teams that they can stay healthy for an entire season and are willing to accept backup roles. It will be interesting to see if Jenkins, a former Pro Bowler, gets a two- or three-year contract to become a starter or maybe gets his role changed to possibly get snaps at safety, where he played some in 2012.

    The good news: The Cowboys couldn't participate Tuesday because they have just $175,000 in cap space. Anthony Spencer signed his franchise tender, and the team can continue having talks with their defensive end about a long-term deal. Also, if the team can finalize a new long-term deal with Tony Romo, it'll lower his salary cap number from $16.8 million and open the door for the Cowboys to sign some second-tier free agents.

    Jets interested in Victor Butler

    March, 10, 2013
    3/10/13
    7:36
    PM ET
    A report in the New York Daily News says the New York Jets are interested in Cowboys free-agent linebacker Victor Butler.

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    Ed Werder joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to discuss Tony Romo's potential contract extension, the Cowboys' plans for Anthony Spencer and how Joe Flacco's final month of the season impacted the Cowboys' offseason.

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    A source said the Cowboys have no interest in Butler's return at this time. Of course, things change in the NFL, and the Cowboys are trying to find fresh faces at the linebacker spots.

    Butler is credited by the Cowboys coaches with 23 tackles, but he also had three sacks, one tackle for loss, seven quarterback pressures, three pass breakups and one forced fumble.

    Those aren't bad stats for a backup player. However, Butler's inconsistent play was the reason why he finished seven different games without a tackle.

    If Butler does return to the Cowboys, and it appears doubtful he will at this point, he might play defensive end or maybe outside linebacker. However, it seems Butler is better suited to play in a 3-4 defense.


    IRVING, Texas -- You can't go back and re-draft now but just two years into this and the 2011 NFL Draft could be something worth looking at again.

    That year the Cowboys selected USC tackle Tyron Smith with the ninth selection overall. The Cowboys needed to upgrade their offensive line and selecting Smith was the right choice because he was projected as a left tackle.

    But it left Wisconsin defensive end J.J. Watt on the board and he was picked No. 11 by the Houston Texans.

    In barely two seasons, Watt has 13 career sacks, including 7.5 this season.

    Smith has switched positions, going from right tackle in an impressive rookie season to the left side in 2012. After three weeks, he led the NFL with six penalties.

    What's interesting about this is it appears Cowboys defensive coordinator Rob Ryan pleaded with the front office to draft Watt over Smith. Or at least that's what his brother, New York Jets coach Rex Ryan said Wednesday afternoon in a conference call with the Houston media in anticipation of Monday night's clash.

    "Well, the first thing, you love the fanatical effort," Rex Ryan said. "The guy plays with his hair on fire and that’s something you notice. But the size, strength, athleticism; it’s rare to find a guy with that kind of combination. I know my brother was wanting him when he was in Dallas. He lost out in that battle. They took that tackle instead. We kept saying, 'You got to get this kid, you got to get this kid.' And sure enough, Houston ends up with him.

    "(Watt) might be the first overall pick if you’re having that draft all over again. He might be the first overall pick. Certainly, he makes a huge difference and an impact. Really, it’s a guy, as a defensive coach all my life, it’s one of those rare guys that comes along once in a long time and he’s doing a tremendous job."

    At the time, the Cowboys didn't really need another pass rusher alongside outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware, given their high-praise for outside linebacker Anthony Spencer and the expected emergence of defensive end Jason Hatcher.

    But it's interesting to note the 2012 struggles of Smith and the solid play of Watt. This could all change, and Smith might become a solid tackle for many years, which is what the Cowboys project.

    But to compare the careers of Smith and Watt moving forward is interesting.

    When asked who does Watt remind him of, Rex Ryan said, "I’d say maybe like Dan Hampton. That kind of length and size and power. That’s the kind of guy he reminds me of."

    LeQuan Lewis could make NFL debut Sunday

    September, 13, 2012
    9/13/12
    9:00
    AM ET
    IRVING, Texas – Cornerback LeQuan Lewis has never played in an NFL game. But it appears that will change Sunday when the Cowboys take on the Seattle Seahawks in Week 2.

    The Cowboys signed Lewis on Wednesday to beef up the secondary and give them some help on special teams.

    "I'm very excited about being active," Lewis said. "It's a long road for me. This is my fourth team (and) I think I finally found a home. I'm not going to get comfortable just being here. I want to make an impact to make sure I stay and make sure that reaper don't come back after me."

    Lewis was signed by the Jets on August 15 but was released from their practice squad Tuesday.

    It's the second time the Cowboys have signed a cornerback who played for Jets coach Rex Ryan, defensive coordinator Rob Ryan's brother. Last year, the Cowboys signed Frank Walker.

    "After playing for Rex and seeing his brother, I'm basically in the same place but with a different logo," Lewis said. "They're both jokers and good people and I really like coach Rex. I appreciate what they're doing for me."

    Lewis worked on all the special teams units with the Jets and that was attractive to the Cowboys, who like speedy, physical players that can get down the field.

    If Lewis is active, he will mainly get snaps on special teams.

    "Special teams, I think I can get real familiar with that," he said. "There's no thinking with that, you just go down there and make plays."

    Bill Parcells versus the Cowboys

    April, 9, 2012
    4/09/12
    1:32
    PM ET
    We're not sure when the Saints will play the Cowboys this season -- the NFL schedule is to be released this month -- but it's clear a new coach will take over for New Orleans now that Sean Payton's appeal of his season-long suspension was turned down.

    Bill Parcells is one man who could take over for Payton in 2012.

    The last time Parcells coached against the Cowboys was Dec. 19, 1999, when he ran the New York Jets. Joe Hall's 37-yard field goal beat the Cowboys 22-21 at Texas Stadium. Parcells' defense picked off two Troy Aikman passes that day.

    Parcells went 9-7 against the Cowboys when he coached the New York Giants, including a six-game win streak on the back end of his tenure.

    In New England, Parcells coached against Dallas once, losing in 1996.

    Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said he still respects Parcells and considers him a friend. It will be an interesting game if Parcells replaces Payton in 2012.

    Several players Parcells drafted or signed are still with the Cowboys, including Tony Romo, DeMarcus Ware, Marcus Spears, Miles Austin, Jay Ratliff and Jason Witten.

    Remember Rob Ryan's harsh take on Tim Tebow?

    March, 21, 2012
    3/21/12
    12:33
    PM ET
    Rex Ryan apparently didn't ask for his twin brother's advice before the New York Jets pulled the trigger on a trade for Tim Tebow.

    Rob Ryan wasn't real impressed with Tebow this season, to put it politely. Of course, the Cowboys' defensive coordinator didn't put it so politely the day after he watched a Tebow-led comeback beat his brother's Jets, saying he was disgusted by watching such a gimmicky offense in the NFL.

    “It made me, uh, throw up,” Ryan said, pausing mid-sentence to make a vomiting motion. “That stuff comes into play. You get that crap. I don’t like it because it’s college football. The things you see [is] a lot of spread. We’re getting a lot of two tight ends blocking for empty sets.

    “Who would have ever thought that? This is the NFL. Those teams don’t win.”

    Ryan was reminded that Tebow's team did win. The Broncos beat the Jets, 17-13, despite generating only 229 yards of total offense after Tebow and Co. marched 95 yards for the winning score, a 20-yard touchdown run by the passing-challenged quarterback.

    “That team did win last night, but it was horse----, and thanks for pointing that out,” Ryan replied. “The guy made a hell of a play, though, didn’t he?

    “Just a second, I’ll take a knee myself.”

    Don't know if Rex Ryan will take a knee -- "Tebowing," as the prayerful pose became known -- but his Jets are taking a chance on Tebow, which could make for some interesting conversation at family functions this offseason.

    Cowboys will not raise ticket prices

    March, 20, 2012
    3/20/12
    1:38
    PM ET
    For the fourth consecutive season, ticket prices at Cowboys Stadium will not increase, according to Brett Daniels, senior director of corporate communications.

    The Cowboys have not raised ticket prices since they moved into the $1.3 billion facility in Arlington.

    The Cowboys join the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins as teams who won't raise ticket prices in 2012. The Green Bay Packers, meanwhile, will raise their prices.

    The Cowboys averaged the second-highest ticket price in the NFL last season at $110.20, according to Team Marketing Report, which measures ticket prices for fans.

    The New York Jets averaged the highest ticket in the league at $120.85. NFL average tickets costs $77.36.

    Cowboys sign safety Brodney Pool

    March, 15, 2012
    3/15/12
    10:34
    AM ET
    SportsNation

    How would you grade the Cowboys' start to free agency?

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      10%
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      3%
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      2%

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    The Dallas Cowboys have signed former New York Jets safety Brodney Pool, coach Jason Garrett said during a Thursday morning conference call.

    Terms were not disclosed.

    Pool played for the Jets the last two seasons and was credited with four quarterback hurries, three pass breakups and one interception last season.

    Garrett said the team wanted to sign Pool last year, during the brief free agency period, but was unable to due to finances.

    "He has some really good ball skills," Garrett said.

    Read the full story here.

    Safety Brodney Pool coming to visit

    March, 14, 2012
    3/14/12
    4:44
    PM ET
    The Cowboys will receive a visit from safety Brodney Pool, according to a source.

    Pool played for the New York Jets the last two seasons and was credited with four quarterback hurries, three pass breakups and one interception last season.

    Pool, however, played with Cowboys defensive coordinator Rob Ryan with the Cleveland Browns in the 2009 season. Under Ryan, Pool had a career-high four interceptions and also had 10 pass breakups.

    A second-round pick from Oklahoma by the Browns, Pool is a native of Corpus Christi, Texas. If he signs, it could signal the end of Abram Elam's brief time with the Cowboys. He played one season with Dallas and wasn't offered a contract when the season was over.

    Rob Ryan has no grudge against Brandon Jacobs

    December, 30, 2011
    12/30/11
    2:29
    PM ET


    IRVING, Texas – Rob Ryan swears that bears no ill will toward Brandon Jacobs despite the Giants running back’s rather rude postgame conversation with the Dallas defensive coordinator’s twin brother.

    Jacobs and Jets head coach Rex Ryan had a heated, face-to-face discussion after the Giants’ win over their New York rivals last week. It reportedly started with Jacobs telling the guarantee-happy Jets coach, “Time to shut up, fat boy.”

    A couple of days before the Cowboys and Giants play for the NFC East title, Rob Ryan basically shrugged when asked about the confrontation. He’s much more concerned with figuring out how to stop Jacobs, who had his lone 100-yard game of the season in the Giants’ Dec. 11 win at Cowboys Stadium, than sticking up for his brother.

    “I’m sure it wasn’t just a one-sided thing,” Rob Ryan said. “I don’t want to talk about it. I have great respect for both of them. Obviously blood on one of them with Rex. But this Jacobs kid ran for [101] yards on us. He is a grown man. I look at him. He is gigantic. He has great size and things.

    “Let’s be honest those are two guys that love their team, that love who they are. They’re vocal leaders of their groups. Sometimes people bang heads. That is life. I’m sure you guys have your altercations too.”

    Ryan found the thought of a family grudge against Jacobs humorous, as if anybody needed additional motivation with the division title and NFC’s final playoff berth on the line.

    “Hell, this is a championship game, guys,” Ryan said. “You think that kid is losing any sleep over that incident? Hell, no, he’s looking to take on us, trying to beat us.”

    Abram Elam's father passes away

    December, 1, 2011
    12/01/11
    4:03
    PM ET
    IRVING, Texas -- Cowboys safety Abram Elam left Valley Ranch following Thursday's practice because of the death of his father, Rev. Donald Elam Sr.

    Elam is taking Jerry Jones' private plane to Florida to be with family and close friends. It's uncertain if Elam will return for Friday's practice but it appears he will play in Sunday's game at Arizona.

    Elam said he was notified about his father's passing around noon.

    The Cowboys safety has endured the loss of several family members.

    In May 2008, when Elam played for the New York Jets, he left minicamp because older brother Donald Elam Jr. had been killed. In 1999, Abram Elam lost his 12-year old sister and in 1987, an 18-year old brother.

    Rob Ryan: Broncos' offense made me 'throw up'

    November, 18, 2011
    11/18/11
    2:23
    PM ET
    IRVING, Texas – Give Rob Ryan credit for avoiding any inflammatory statements the teams on the Dallas Cowboys’ schedule. That could be considered progress.

    But if the Denver and Dallas somehow advance to the Super Bowl, Ryan has provided plenty of material for the Broncos’ bulletin board.

    Ryan watched the Broncos’ 17-13 win over the New York Jets on Thursday night. He didn’t enjoy the game, and not just because his twin brother Rex was the losing head coach. It pains Ryan to watch polarizing quarterback Tim Tebow run (and run and run some more) an unconventional offense.

    “It made me, uh, throw up,” Ryan said, pausing mid-sentence to make a vomiting motion. “That stuff comes into play. You get that crap. I don’t like it because it’s college football. The things you see a lot of spread. We’re getting a lot of two tight ends blocking for empty sets.

    “Who would have ever thought that? This is the NFL. Those teams don’t win.”

    Well, actually, that team won Thursday night. The Broncos, who are 4-1 with passing-challenged Tebow as the starter this season, finished with only 229 total yards. However, 95 of those came on the game-winning drive, which Tebow capped with a 20-yard touchdown run.

    “That team did win last night, but it was horse----, and thanks for pointing that out,” Ryan replied when reminded that the Broncos were victorious. “The guy made a hell of a play, though, didn’t he?

    “Just a second, I’ll take a knee myself.”

    Yes, that was Ryan joking about “Tebowing,” the devoutly religious quarterback’s prayerful pose that has replaced planking as the nation’s new fad.

    But Ryan, whose comments about the “all-hype” Philadelphia Eagles and the Cowboys having two receivers better than Detroit’s Calvin Johnson received a lot of attention this season, was completely serious on the subject of the Broncos’ butt-ugly offense.

    “They’re back there getting the hell beat out of them the whole game,” Ryan said when asked why he considered the Denver offense to be horse excrement. “It’s unfortunate the kid threw the interception for the TD or I really think that game is going to go a different way.

    “But I don’t care about that game. I only care about us. I don’t like to see my brother hurt after a game, that sucked, but that’s the way it is.”

    Five plays that shaped first half

    November, 8, 2011
    11/08/11
    6:22
    PM ET
    ARLINGTON, Texas -- After every game, we seemingly always spend a couple of days talking about this play or that play and how it affected a Cowboys’ win or loss.

    Well, the Cowboys are 4-4 at the midway point of the season and there have been more of a handful of plays that already have shaped their season.

    The list only will get longer in the second half.

    For now, though, the Cowboys are probably right where they deserve to be as we enter the second half of the season.

    They should’ve beaten the New York Jets and Detroit, games they ultimately lost. And they should’ve lost to San Francisco and Washington, games they stole at the end.

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    ESPNDallas.com's Tim MacMahon joins Galloway & Company to hand out midseason grades for the Cowboys.

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    That said, here’s a look at some of the plays that have played a role in the Cowboys’ season.

    A couple were probably obvious to you, while a couple others may have surprised you.

    They’re all important.

    All you have to do is think how different the season would be, if these plays hadn’t occurred.



    5. Rookie Leaves Mark


    OPPONENT: St. Louis
    SCORE: 0-0, Tied
    SITUATION: First-and-10 from the Dallas 9 with 9:47 left in the first quarter.
    PLAY: DeMarco Murray finds a big hole in the middle of the line, makes a nifty move on the safety and sprints 91 yards down the left sideline for a touchdown. It’s the second-longest TD run in franchise history and propels him to a 253-yard day -- the most in franchise history.

    4. Connection Burns Skins


    OPPONENT: Washington
    SCORE: 16-15, Washington
    SITUATION: Third-and-21 from Dallas 30 with 2:20 left in the fourth quarter
    PLAY: Tony Romo eludes pressure and finds Dez Bryant downfield for a 30-yard gain after a leaping catch and run by Bryant. The play gets an additional 15 yards because DeAngelo Hall grabs Bryant’s facemask as he tackles him, moving the ball to the Washington 25 and setting up Dan Bailey’s game-winning field goal.

    3. Romo's Pick Tips Scales


    OPPONENT: Detroit
    SCORE: 30-27, Dallas
    SITUATION: First-and-10 from Dallas 20 with 4:22 left in the fourth quarter
    PLAY: Tony Romo, pressured by Ndamukong Suh, heaved a pass off his back foot to Jason Witten, who was 25 yard downfield. Stephen Tulloch tipped the underthrown pass in the air before intercepting it.

    2. Bailey To The Rescue


    OPPONENT: San Francisco
    SCORE: 24-24, Tied
    SITUATION: Fourth-and-four from San Francisco 30 with :04 left in the fourth quarter
    PLAY: Bailey missed a 21-yard attempt earlier in the game. The Cowboys didn’t call on him again until the final play of regulation, when they needed him to convert 48-yard with Candlestick Park’s tricky winds to send the game into overtime. He delivered, then sunk the 49ers in overtime as the Cowboys avoided an 0-2 start.

    1. Opening Stumble


    OPPONENT: New York Jets
    SCORE: 24-17, Dallas
    SITUATION: Third-and-2 from NY Jets 2 with 9:12 left in the fourth quarter
    PLAY: A touchdown probably clinches the game, and a field goal makes it difficult for the Jets to win. The only thing Romo can’t do is turn the ball over. After not finding a receiver, Romo scrambled and tried to dive into the end zone. Romo tried to cover the ball up, but it was poked free and the Jets recovered.

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