Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

October 4, 4:00 PM ET
Chat with Calvin Watkins

Calvin Watkins
  (4:00 PM)

Guys, thanks for the patience. We had some changes in the Cowboys schedule today and now we're starting the chat.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

Which Dallas Cowboys Rookies are you Impressed with so far?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:01 PM)

Chris,What's up, man, good to hear from you. Dez Bryant for one has impressed me the most. He's got great hands, speed and is very physical. Bryant still needs work on the playbook, but that takes time and once he masters that, he's going to be a force.

AliBen 567 [via mobile]

Can the boys line ever get back to the nasty dominating ways of glory years? Also when is the running game going to show up this year!

Calvin Watkins
  (4:04 PM)

I think Jason Garrett always wants to run the football. It's something he always talks about, yet doesn't do it on a consistent basis.In Week 1, the Cowboys ran for over 100 yards, which is a positive step. The next week was pretty bad and the game got away from them and Dallas didn't pass as much in the second half. Three runs in the third quarter vs. the Bears.In Week 3, where the Cowboys finally won a game, you saw how strong the run game can be. Marion Barber finished out the game with some hard runs in the fourth quarter and if he continues to do that I expect the Cowboys to have more confidence in running the ball 15-20 times a game.

Rob (Delaware)

Will this team ever play with fire on a regular basis ? Last week they seemed to play aggressive and with some fire ,they just need it every week. Whats the problem?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:06 PM)

That's a good question, Rob.Wade Phillips said the team had some good practices last week and it continued on Monday. The Cowboys, I think, have had some dry practices and it's carried over into the games. Phillips wants an uptempo practice and if he gets it he expect things to get better once the games start.

Lex (Calgary, AB)

Hi Calvin,Due the Cowboys win their next 2 Games?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:08 PM)

Maybe. I think the Titans game is very interesting. Vince Young is hard to judge sometimes. Chris Johnson was shutdown a little bit by Denver. Overall, I like the Titans team speed, but the Cowboys should win this game.As for the Vikings, when they got those horns blowing, look out an opposing team is in trouble. As much as that Week 3 win was important for the Cowboys, it seemed to inspire the Vikings as well. Brad Childress gave his team the week off and you wonder if the Vikings will come in with a little win streak going into that Week 6 contest. I'm not sure if Dallas wins in Minnesota.

chris (harlingen,tx)

Is the coaching staff being over cautious by not letting our other inside linebackers see game time? Besides on sp teams. Players sometimes preform better in game time. I mean they are taking up a roster spot, now it's time to see if they are worth it. Thoughts?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:13 PM)

Nope. Keith Brooking and Bradie James are two inside linebackers who are quality players. The bottom line is Sean Lee and Jason Williams are struggling with areas of the defense. Lee should play in the base package because he's not ready for the pass coverage stuff. Williams just can't do it in most areas. He's better against the run than the pass. Dallas should give Brooking and James a few plays off in the first half on the base defense to make sure they don't wear out later in the season.

Kevin (Sugar Land)

why is everyone still giving Romo such a hard time? i guess im the only one that remembers the days of Vinny T, and Quincy Carter. I'm just happy to not have a crusty old man for a quarterback.

Calvin Watkins
  (4:19 PM)

It's hard for a Cowboys quarterback sometimes to get the support of the fans.Romo has been good for the Cowboys and if you remember all the Carter's, Vinny's, Drew's etc., etc., you will understand how special Romo is. He was on the roster all those years, watching and learning and took advantage of his time on the field. He's doing well. He should be respected more, but I guess he won't until he gets a Super Bowl ring.

Bigwave Dave (McKinney, Tx)

Calvin, which Cowboy team do you expect to show this week? The one we saw againt the Texans or the one we would rather forget about the first 2 games?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:20 PM)

If the Cowboys want to make a strong playoff push, then the team that played vs. Houston needs to show up. If not, a 1-3 start is hard to overcome.

Ralph Scott (Canton, Ohio)

With all the teams in the NFC East all being 2-2 do you think Dallas will still prevail out on top?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:22 PM)

You know what, yeah, I think the Cowboys still have a shot at winning the division. I don't believe they will blow people away but I can see somebody winning this thing with a 9-7 mark.

John (New Jersey)

Calvin - enjoy your work - does the D stack the line to stop CJ and dare Young to beat them? Also I believe short passes and play action should be used to offset Tenny pass rush. Thoughts?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:25 PM)

I would let VY beat me over Chris Johnson. Then again, the Cowboys have allowed just two 100 yard rushers the last three seasons, the last game at Texas Stadium in 2008 and the Texans game in Week 3. Dallas has a very good run defense, but VY is inconsistent, so I would challenge him to beat me.

Seth Newell (Big Spring TX)

I saw last night in the Bears game how the flanked Forte out wide and ran a quick slant to him. Seems to me that would make a great play for Felix Jones. Is that something the Cowboys have considered doing with him or is he just not that good of a reciever?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:31 PM)

There are times where Jones is lineup up wide, but the Cowboys have three good wide receivers, Dez Bryant, Roy Williams and Miles Austin. I would suspect it's better to take care these receivers than Jones. But when Felix Jones is lineup wide it does give the defense something to think about.

Dale Schultz (Waterloo, IA)

It has been said that the move of cowboys lineman Doug Free to the left side has paid off, Isn't that a bit premature being that t'is very early in the season, the running game hasn't been the greastest, and free has yet to face a dominant DT like Jared Allen?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:33 PM)

When the Cowboys run toward the left side, they have more success than to the right and Free hasn't allowed a sack or a tackle this season. He's given up a few quarterback pressures but Romo hasn't been sacked. I think to praise Free, who has been the Cowboys best offensive linemen to date, is fair to say. Wade Phillips said Free was the highest graded linemen in the first month of the year.

boysfan (MN)

are there any rumors that maybe a coaching will be made if the Cowboys falter in the next few games if so where do those rumors point

Calvin Watkins
  (4:34 PM)

Don't expect a coaching change in 2010.

CowboyPete (New Jersey)

Calvin, how come the Bears were able to make adjustments and shred our defense but couldn't against the Giants ? Is Perry Fewell a better DC than Wade ?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:35 PM)

I don't think so. The Giants were able to get most of those sacks because Jay Cutler held onto the ball longer. Against the Cowboys, Cutler got rid of the ball faster.

Michael (Blanton)

I am a die hard cowboys fan and wanted to know if you thought the Cowboys are the best team in the NFL right now?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:35 PM)

No, Michael, I don't. Not in my Top 10.

GP (New Jersey)

Felix Jones weight gang seems to be slowing him down. Can you discuss?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:36 PM)

I don't know if he is slowing down. He's bigger for sure, but for whatever reason he doesn't have that same burst like he did last year. He's still quick and he makes people miss in space.

Jimmy (Fort Rucker)

Calvin, why are you habitually late for your own chats?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:36 PM)

I was on time today.

SprungOnSports (Long Island)

Based on the first four weeks, who would you say was the best team in a seemingly weak NFC?

Calvin Watkins
  (4:38 PM)

I still like Green Bay. Not by much. Philly is good, but with Vick's health a problem, I'm not so sure. The Saints have won some close games and you should get credit for that. Atlanta and San Francisco should be better. Dallas should be better and New York should be better. Chicago was impressive the first two weeks, but took a step back vs. the Giants last night.

Chaz (Abilene Texas)

Jason Witten, in my opinion, is still one of of the premiere tight ends in the league. This year, he looks a little different. Granted, he has been banged up a little, do you think Witten is starting to decline a little bit or are teams more capable of running with the him considering more teams are in the 3-4 this year???

Calvin Watkins
  (4:44 PM)

I think Witten is a little banged up. He's got a little knee problem and that's a reason why his numbers are down.

Calvin Watkins
  (4:45 PM)

That's all the time I have for today. Take care.