Breakfast links: False starts in Dallas

September, 26, 2012
9/26/12
8:00
AM ET
You got questions, I got links.

Dallas Cowboys

Among Calvin Watkins' observations from Sunday's game is a very interesting suggestion that the false-start penalties might not be completely the fault of the men committing them. Calvin writes that a large part of the problem is that backup center Ryan Cook, who arrived in the final week of preseason and is playing in place of injured starter Phil Costa, is having trouble with Tony Romo's cadence. Man. I know we've discussed the idea of whether Bill Callahan can help this line improve as the year goes along, but there are serious, fundamental problems he's dealing with, and he has some work to do just to bring it up to baseline acceptable. Callahan is coaching a remedial-level offensive line.

With Barry Church done for the season, the Cowboys have signed safety Eric Frampton, a career special-teamer whose presence could free up Danny McCray to play on the defense more. This shows that there are no very good solutions out there at safety at this point in the season, and the Cowboys are going to have to mix and match to replace Church.

Philadelphia Eagles

Second-year punter Chas Henry had a great first week but wasn't good in Week 2 or Week 3, so he's out and former Cowboys punter Mat McBriar (who lost the job to Henry in camp) is back in and fired up about it. People were asking me on Twitter if the Eagles were trying to "send a message" by cutting Henry after their first loss of the year. I think they were just trying to improve their punting.

Jeff McLane went to the tape (and the stopwatch) to address the questions of whether and why Michael Vick holds onto the ball too long. His findings are interesting, and as usual there's plenty of blame to go around.

New York Giants

The Giants hate that the Eagles have beaten them seven out of the past eight times, and the taste of the most recent loss -- last December's home loss to Vince Young -- lingers for an angry bunch that's hoping to take care of business against its rivals Sunday night in Philadelphia.

The expectation among those who cover the Giants is that Ahmad Bradshaw will reclaim his starting running back job now that he's healthy again, but we're all eager to hear what Tom Coughlin has to say, starting today, about how the carries will be divvied and what role remains for super-sub Andre Brown the rest of the year.

Washington Redskins

The NFL is expected to fine Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan $25,000 for his outburst against the officials at the end of Sunday's game. As I wrote here Monday, the league has no choice but to stand behind its officials, regardless of the job they're doing, as long as they insist on perpetrating the replacement-officials farce. Also, Shanahan was way out of line. That combination of stuff means a big fine for Kyle.

One of the big stories this week in Washington is the number of hits rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III has been taking as he's running around and directing the Redskins' frantic-but-productive offense. Stephen Whyno takes a look at the issue.

Dan Graziano

ESPN New York Giants reporter

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