We've seen more than enough to declare DeMarco Murray a legitimate lead horse. He has 466 yards in three games since Felix Jones went down, the most in a three-game span in franchise history. OK, more than half of those yards came against the Rams' miserable defense, but you definitely can't knock the competition after this 22-carry, 139-yard performance. The Seahawks entered the afternoon allowing a league-low 3.3 yards per carry. Murray has great speed and consistently gains yards after contact. That's an excellent combination.
Jason Garrett and Tony Romo won't have to answer questions about the Cowboys' vanishing vertical passing game this week. Dallas attacked downfield effectively while throwing for 279 yards on 19-of-31 passing. Romo hit Dez Bryant and Miles Austin on go routes and found a wide-open Jason Witten up the seam for a 33-yard score, one of Romo's two touchdown passes. An impressive performance would have been excellent if Romo didn't miss an open Austin in the back of the end zone. Bryant's fumble at the Seattle 1 was another blemish.
The Dallas defensive linemen weren't happy despite the win. Nor should they have been. A week after the Eagles ran the ball down the Cowboys' throats, the Seahawks rushed for 162 yards, averaging 5.4 yards per carry. Leading tackler Sean Lee's absence definitely doesn't help matters, but the defensive line should take accountability for the unacceptable rushing totals the last two games. They are determined to identify and fix the issue before Buffalo's Fred Jackson, the NFL's rushing leader, arrives in his hometown next weekend.
You could make a case that Seahawks QB Tavaris Jackson was the Cowboys' MVP. He threw three picks and no touchdowns. But give the Cowboys credit for forcing those turnovers. Jay Ratliff's pressure caused Jason Hatcher's pick. Hatcher's pressure caused Jackson to throw a ball up for grabs, which led to an easy interception for Terence Newman. And Gerald Sensabaugh had great position and battled a receiver for the ball on his pick. It's surprising that Jackson threw for 221 yards and was sacked only once, but the Seattle passing game didn't produce points.
The return game was an adventure because of the poor decisions by Dez Bryant and Kevin Ogletree, and Jesse Holley committed an even dumber post-play penalty after a fumbled kickoff had the Seahawks pinned deep. But all in all, it was a good day for the Dallas special teams. Punter Chris Jones excelled as Mat McBriar's fill-in, averaging 43.0 yards on four kicks, with no return yardage and two inside the 20. Electrifying Seattle return specialist Leon Washington was a nonfactor. And Dan Bailey extended his streak of made field goals to 19.
It's hard to complain too much after a double-digit win, but the home crowd did boo Jason Garrett after the Cowboys sputtered inside the 10 for the second time in the first half. Red zone play-calling continues to be Garrett's biggest problem area. It seems that the closer the Cowboys get to the end zone, the cuter Garrett tries to be. Two passes and a misdirection pitch after first-and-goal from the 1? That'll fire up even the most passive crowd when it fails.