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December 8, 1:30 PM ET
Chat with Tim MacMahon

Tim MacMahon
  (1:35 PM)

Sorry I'm running a little late. Had to stop by the AAC for a little Mavs action this morning. On to the Cowboys questions ...

Busy at Work (Austin)

Who's performing the best out of Dallas' draft picks this year?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:37 PM)

There are only two draft picks who are really performing. Tyron Smith and DeMarco Murray both look like outstanding picks. Murray appears to be a third-round bargain. We won't know about second-rounder Bruce Carter until next year. Fourth-rounder David Arkin needs to get stronger or he'll be a bust.

Clovis Mike (CA)

Why do you think Garret is not coming out and taking responsiblity for mismanaging the end of the Cardinals game. I think everyone would respect him more and have more confidence going forward if he admitted his mistakes and learned from this experience. Is he that egotistical?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:38 PM)

I agree with you. He's too smart to really believe that he made the right decision. The only possible explanation for sticking to his guns is because his ego is getting in the way. The danger with that is it could cost him credibility in the locker room.

Nathan (East Texas)

I love you work Tim! I am a Garret fan. I have read severl articles that garret could be fired if the Cowboys do not make the playoffs. Would Mr. Jones do something that beetle-headed?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:41 PM)

Jason Garrett is not going to be fired after this season. Period. Jerry Jones made a long-term commitment to Garrett, and he's got more invested than just money. If Garrett succeeds, Jerry looks like a genius for identifying and grooming him. Plus, if you look at the big picture, Garrett has done a pretty good job. His errors have been major and magnified, but he still has the Cowboys in contention a year after the most embarrassing season in franchise history.

Jason (Nashville)

Remember me? I'm the one who said I could see Dallas lose and the Giants win...and you thought I was crazy. How can I get paid to be so out of touch too? Sounds like a sweet gig.

Tim MacMahon
  (1:42 PM)

Yes, it is a sweet gig. I made the mistake of trusting the Cowboys against a bad team. Shame on me. Last I checked, the Giants lost last week, though.

Bryan (Springdale, AR)

Kind of late in the week, but any chance Jason Garrett reads your article and decides "hmmm, Tim's right: If I expect other's to be accountable for their actions, maybe I should be for mine", followed up by some humility at a press conference?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:43 PM)

You're referring to JJT's column, although I agree with the premise of it. The chances of Garrett publicly agreeing with it are about as good as your chances of starting at QB against the Giants.

Ben (ATL)

Will M. Manningham be available for the Giants this week vs the Cowboys? If so, how do you see the matchups going? (NY WR's vs DAL DB's)

Tim MacMahon
  (1:45 PM)

Manningham had limited participation in the Giants' Wednesday practice, an indication he'll be ready for Sunday night. I see the Giants' WR having the edge over the Cowboys' corners. The Cowboys need to get pressure on Eli Manning to keep those edges from being exploited. Victor Cruz vs. Orlando Scandrick in the slot is especially concerning from a Cowboys perspective.

raul (rio grande city)

T MAC what's up with the Cowboys Secondary, they have had some bad games huh? What's ur take on this.....If Morris Claiborne is there in the first round and he is within reach say they trade anywhere from 1 to 4 slots up...will Jerry pull the trigger?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:46 PM)

Morris Claiborne will be gone way before the Cowboys go on the clock, but cornerback should be a priority. The Cowboys need to get a corner in the first couple of rounds.

Kyle (Trumbull, CT)

In your complete honest opinion, do you believe the Cowboys are good enough to win more than one playoff game? I'm a diehard 'Boys fan and I'm having trouble trusting Rob Ryan's live by the blitz die by the blitz mentality.

Tim MacMahon
  (1:47 PM)

I will not pick the Cowboys to win more than one playoff game. I don't think they're good enough to be expected to beat the Packers, Saints or 49ers on the road. However, a win over the Saints or 49ers wouldn't be a total shocker. Beating the Packers in Lambeau would be a stunner for the ages.

Austin (Houston)

I think Romo's great play since the horrible Detroit game has restored Jason Garrett's faith in him (though he would publicly say he never lost faith). But I think Garrett still coaches scared and I think it's now due to the suddenly shaky run game and offensive line. What do you think?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:48 PM)

It's all about the offensive line. I think Garrett came up with reasons after the fact for letting 19 seconds tick off the clock, but the things he cited were all about the offensive line being a liability.

Jeri (San Diego)

Hi Tim, enjoy your chats Bro!Why is it that Garrett refuses to use the screen pass to either Rb's. I know Robinson was hurt on a screen pass last week, but that was just bad luck. It seems like the best way to avoid the rush is to dump off the ball on a few screens to stop the G-men from overtaking are OL. I just think even if they only use this 4-6 times it would equal less presure on Romo and give him that extra 1-2 seconds he needs to find his #2-3 guys. Thanks Tim Happy Holidays to you and your family.

Tim MacMahon
  (1:49 PM)

Interesting point, Jeri. The Cowboys worked on screens for a practice session every day during training camp, but they've abandoned them lately. I don't know why. You'd think they would look for ways to get Murray or Jones the ball in space.

Shawn (Ashe County, NC)

Tim, Would we expect to see D Murray go "hard in the paint" against the G-MEN? I know Fiammetta will be returning and this should be a big boost. Your thoughts?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:51 PM)

I think you'll see a lot of three-WR sets, a lot of two-back sets and hardly any two-TE sets. That would make sense even if Martellus Bennett wasn't hurt. The Cowboys now have the WR personnel to force teams out of eight-man fronts, but they've been at their best running the ball behind Tony Fiammetta, who is also back this week.

Bingo (State of confusion)

Tim, What do you think the split will be between Murray and Jones?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:53 PM)

I've argued that Felix Jones needs to have a significant role. He's too explosive to just stand on the sideline, and they shouldn't run Murray into the ground. I think Murray should get about 20 touches per game and Jones about 10-12.

Kofi (Accra)

Tim Mach, why cant Victor Butler play in pass coverage as an ILB rather than having Brookings and Brady James in pass coverage, or he is stictly an outside line backer...........

Tim MacMahon
  (1:54 PM)

He's strictly an OLB. He converted from a college DE and doesn't have any experience covering backs and TEs other than in the flats. The Cowboys need Bruce Carter to develop. He's the guy capable of being a good coverage ILB.

BG (Tampa)

You having clock management issues today?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:54 PM)

Yes, but at least I admit it.

JS Cowboy (NY)

Admittedly I don't look at individuals on the O-Line during games, but Phil Costa just seems to be waaay overmatched each week. Kind of reminiscent of Al Johnson days....can the Cowboys do anything different to help out the situation?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:55 PM)

They have to give him as much help as possible, which is why they needed to get bigger at left guard. When Bill Nagy was in there, they had two guys who got overpowered a lot playing next to each other. They need to upgrade the center position next season.

mykelle (tyler)

tim, when wade screwed up, you guys in the dallas media showed him no mercy in his monday press conference. sometimes it would get downright disrespectful. why did yall give jason a pass this past monday? the pc was tense, but you guys seem to tip toe around jason moreso than with wade.

Tim MacMahon
  (1:57 PM)

I disagree. The first 21 questions were about him screwing up. That included a couple of questions when he seemed to channel Wade and say, "I don't have a great answer for you."

Lincoln (Bethany, MO)

Do you think the Cowboys should start looking for a possible replacement for Romo in April's draft? maybe RG3?

Tim MacMahon
  (1:59 PM)

I don't think they'll take a QB in the first round. I expect that they'll draft one in the mid-rounds and try to develop him. There's a good argument for taking a guy like RG3 if he's on the board -- see Aaron Rodgers -- but Jerry Jones is committed to Romo and will probably try to fill other needs.

Tim MacMahon
  (1:59 PM)

Appreciate all the questions. Gotta go now.