Tuesday, November 23, 2010
NFC East Week 11 decisive moment
By Matt Mosley
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Dallas Cowboys interim head coach Jason Garrett should suggest a long-term contract extension for rookie cornerback Bryan McCann immediately. For the second consecutive game, the former SMU Mustang made a game-changing play that contributed to a win. Last week it was a 101-yard interception return for a touchdown against the New York Giants.
On Sunday against the Lions, McCann made a brilliant play with 9:38 left in the third quarter and the Cowboys trailing 12-7. The Lions' John Wendling saved the ball from going into the end zone on a 53-yard punt by Nick Harris. But once Wendling touched the ball, McCann knew there wasn't any downside to trying to grab it and take off. That's exactly what he did en route to a 97-yard touchdown that put the Cowboys up 14-12 and completely changed momentum. Within three minutes, the Cowboys made the score 21-12.
As McCann raced down the sideline, fellow cornerback Orlando Scandrick delivered the final block to spring him into the end zone. And as some of you will recall, McCann didn't even make the Cowboys' opening day roster. He was released and then signed by the Baltimore Ravens. When the Ravens released him and tried to stash him on the practice squad in September, the Cowboys convinced him their practice squad would be a better situation. The Cowboys had only three cornerbacks on the 53-man roster at the time.
Now McCann may have won himself a permanent spot on the roster. Everyone's waiting to see what he'll do on Thanksgiving against the New Orleans Saints. McCann may have been the NFC defensive player of the week for his efforts against the Giants, but now he's received a much more prestigious honor from the Beast blog. I'll get back to you regarding the presentation ceremony at Valley Ranch.