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September 19, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Todd Archer

Todd Archer
  (1:01 PM)

OK, let's go. On to Tampa Bay but I'm sure there will be a lot of talk about Seattle.

Tim Irvin (LA, CA)

Now that the game is over and done with...Can we all just say the Seattle game in week 2 following an emotional game against the Giants in week 1 was the perfect scenario of a so called "trap game"...and the Cowboys fell right into it.

Todd Archer
  (1:02 PM)

I don't agree with the "trap" game sentiment. Here's what happened: Seattle kicked their tail, as Jason Witten said. The Cowboys somewhat weathered the storm early after a bad start and were trailing 13-7 at halftime. They were in the game. In the second half they got manhandled.

eric (cali)

With the cowboys big play threats on the outside, why dont they take more chances down the field? Dez and Miles have both proven that they can make plays on the deep ball you rarely see tony get picked off deep

Todd Archer
  (1:03 PM)

In order to throw the ball deep you need time to throw. Romo had no time to throw against Seattle. And when he did have time he sometimes felt pressure that wasn't there. That's a byproduct of poor protection.

Adam (Toronto)

Where are all the playmakers that this D added? Not 1 pick, not creating any turnovers and unless I am mistaken, why were the DBs playing so far off the receivers? In week 1 they were playing a lot of bump and run and shut down the NYG WR group.

Todd Archer
  (1:05 PM)

The Cowboys didn't lose because Seattle threw it all over the place. They lost because Marshawn Lynch ran crazy in the second half. Seattle's WRs had seven catches for 79 yards. Wilson threw eight passes in the second half. That's it. They didn't have a lot of opportunities to get picks.

Shawn (NC)

Todd,Hope all is well. What is Dez need to do in order to get his game going? Camp talk was that he had a great camp, but he doesn't really produce in games. Any thoughts?

Todd Archer
  (1:06 PM)

He had a great camp last year too. He gets frustrated easily, in my opinion. He tries to make the big plays all of the time and that hurts him. He does not handle press coverage well at times. He's still developing as a receiver but this is who he is. Dez has been more this guy than a receiver many think should dominate.

fred (Miami)

Do you think Witten is in the decline?

Todd Archer
  (1:08 PM)

Off two games? No. I think he deserves some leeway for the poor start based off his history. It's way too early for people to think this is the beginning of the end for him. He is a guy who needs practice time and he missed more time in camp than he missed his entire life. I wouldn't write him off yet.

William (VA)

Rob Ryan Has the players he need so wheres the aggression on the defense been so far?

Todd Archer
  (1:10 PM)

There's a lot of talk about this stuff. I guess it comes down to how you want to define being aggressive. If your definition is "blitz more" then OK. He brought seven times vs. Eli Manning and seven vs. Russell Wilson. I'd think coordinators would prefer to be able to rush four and get after the passer that way rather than trying to devise some scheme to get it done. Last year I think Ryan got in trouble by being to wild and crazy so the scheme would get credit. He needs to rely on players. I said this earlier: the Cowboys did not lose because they didn't pressure Wilson. They lost because they could not stop the run. And one time they did blitz Lynch went for 36 yards.

Jude (ft lauderdale)

You guys reported that the cowboys started talk with romo last week, where have does talks gone so far?

Todd Archer
  (1:11 PM)

Very preliminary. There's not a rush to this deal. Yet.

chris (willis tx)

If Romo is the cowboys most important player why dont they bring high price freeagent or dedicate a draft to protect him? wouldnt that be more romo friendly? seems like he's been running for his life the last couple of years

Todd Archer
  (1:13 PM)

They've done it at times in the past with free agents with some success. Leonard Davis was pretty good his first two years. They drafted Tyron Smith in the first round last year. But even if they dedicated a draft to protecting Romo would they pick the right guys? There's something wrong in the evaluation process with this team considering how many linemen they've missed on in the last 10 years.

Vinnie Vinci (Laurence Harbor, New Jersey)

Hi Todd,I don't get why Felix Jones returns kicks. It's not just the fumble last week that could happen to anyone but he looks hesitant every time he returns the ball and is definitely lacking burst. I find it hard to believe that Dallas can't come up with a better returner

Todd Archer
  (1:14 PM)

I'm with you, Vinnie. I don't understand it. He doesn't make anybody miss. He lacks the burst he had in the past. I don't know why he's active, hontestly. They need to change it up somehow.

G-Money (Chicago, IL)

Hi Todd - Thanks for hosting today's chat. I didn't see Sunday's game but I'm wondering: are Garrett & Callahan making a focused effort to get Dez in more one-on-one situations so he can use his natural size

Todd Archer
  (1:15 PM)

Dez will get the ball when he's open. He wasn't open very much and when he was open he had two drops (maybe one is tough to call a drop since the hit he took but that's the nature of the business). I don't see the Cowboys just saying Get Dez the ball no matter what. It will happen in the normal progression of a game/scheme.

CAleb (Illinois)

How do u see our corners matching up vs there WRs?

Todd Archer
  (1:17 PM)

Vincent Jackson will be a tough test but Brandon Carr has a working history of going against him from their days in the AFC West. I like the matchup overall for the corners this week but they need to get after Josh Freeman.

Aggie (TX)

Biggest mistake was punting on 4th and 3 at the end of first half on Sea 40. If they score there momentum has completely shifted and if not Russell Wilson has to move them 30 yards for a fg.

Todd Archer
  (1:17 PM)

I don't know if it was the biggest mistake, but I think they erred too. I would've taken the chance there since the defense had shut down the Seattle offense up to that point.

john (mass)

Afternoon Todd! was Ogletree just a 1wk wonder? thx

Todd Archer
  (1:19 PM)

I don't think so but it depends on the expectations. If you're looking for No. 3 wide receiver numbers in this offense then he'll be in the 35-45 catch range for the year. That's less than three catches per game. He wasn't a big part of the plan last week and didn't do enough to get open either, but I don't think he's a one-week wonder either.


So Todd, if not a "trap" game, what will Tampa bring? another Beat Down? or more like wk1 & a Win? thanks

Todd Archer
  (1:20 PM)

Cowboys aren't good enough to overlook any team. They have to be ready Sunday. What's the trap here? It's the home opener, they're coming off a loss and need a win. I think they win.

Aggie (TX)

What happened to Doug Free version 2010?

Todd Archer
  (1:21 PM)

Great question, Aggie. Nobody seems to know the answer. He's been too inconsistent and I think he's getting used to the right side still. He needs to be better. A lot better. But I can say that about all five guys on the line. I don't think this is a situation where he got paid and was content. He's not that kind of guy. He's just slumping and it's gone too long.

Mike (San Diego)

Todd, does Jerry Jones have final input on the game day rosters?

Todd Archer
  (1:22 PM)

No, he doesn't. I'll have something on this subject on ESPNDallas tomorrow for what I'm writing. He has input but I've never heard a coach (head or assistant) say Jerry made the call on this guy being active.

Bryan (Springdale, AR)

How do the players feel about the effort from Felix Jones? Is he packing on weight to protect his body to prolong his career?

Todd Archer
  (1:23 PM)

I can't say what the players feel but I'm sure they're wondering what's going on because he has produced in the past. But how does packing on weight prolong his career? He's in a contract year and so far I don't think he gets more than the minimum from somebody next year with how he's played.

Norman (NY)

How would you assess Tyron Smith's performance this past week? I thought he looked pretty good at least compared to the rest of the line.

Todd Archer
  (1:24 PM)

He was OK. I still think he needs to be better. He had a critical false start that set up a second-and-20 when the score was 20-7. His play just doesn't seem as tight as it was last year when he played right tackle. I'm a little surprised, honestly.

Dave (Brooklyn )

Looking at the cowboys schedule outside of cleveland they play a really good quarterback just about every week. so are they never going to send pressure because of the respect they seem to give a guy like Wilson?

Todd Archer
  (1:26 PM)

Each week the plan changes. Sometimes you go after guys. Sometimes you play coverage. It's two games so I don't want to make a broad judgment but the Cowboys got killed by the big play last year. Ryan wants to be more sound. You do that by not tricking things up. Again, they didn't lose to Seattle because of a lack of pressure on Wilson.

Ramon (El Paso TX)

Just wondering: back in 05 the cowboys had two 1st round picks. picking ware and spears. did the cowboys have any interest with aaron rodgers with that 20th pick?

Todd Archer
  (1:26 PM)

I'd have to ask on that. I don't remember. Let me check.

Victor (Texas)

Do you think the cowboys are predictable on offense, because teams anticipate what there doing well?

Todd Archer
  (1:28 PM)

When teams lose, it's because they're predictable. One of the Seattle defenders said after the game they knew what the Cowboys were doing. The Cowboys of the 90s were predictable, people knew what they were running and they executed anyway.

Irvin (Washington dc)

I believe scandrick has more experience playing safety than mike jenkins does. so do you see scandrick getting some snaps there?

Todd Archer
  (1:29 PM)

Neither has really played "safety" by the traditional definition. They've played a hybrid role in passing situations. I do think Scandrick would be better suited for the role than Jenkins. He's done more of the hybrid stuff over the years and might be able to make a smoother transition. But neither guy has really played the traditional spot.

Mike (San Diego)

Todd...follow up then. I read something on another web-site that the reason Felix Jones is on the active roster is because of Jerry's input. Not questioning you, per se, but this intrigued the heck out of me.

Todd Archer
  (1:31 PM)

I haven't read that anywhere. What Jerry said when he was asked on the radio was about Jones' status on the team and role for gameday. He said nothing will change there. Now, maybe I'm naive, but I think of Jason Garrett didn't want him active, then Jones wouldn't be active. Again, maybe I'm being naive.

Bryan (Springdale, AR)

Any chance we see Demarco more involved in the passing game to take some heat off of Romo? The guy is running for his life.

Todd Archer
  (1:32 PM)

I think you're seeing that with the swing passes to the flat and the screen game. Murray should get more touches, to me.

Phil (TX)

the 1st two week of the season the cowboys have had problems with tightends, and with the two starting saftey hurt it will be harder to deal with dallas clark. do you think Jenkins can handle that assignment?

Todd Archer
  (1:35 PM)

It's been an issue the last couple of years honestly. Tight ends have two touchdowns in two games so far against Dallas. They have to do a better job in the red zone and just outside the red zone on them. Clark isn't the same guy he was with Peyton Manning in Indy but he can be dangerous. Here's what I wonder: the coaches rave about Bruce Carter's coverage ability but they take him off the field a lot.

Gerry (Fl)

Tampa bay has some guys thats hard to bring down in the back field with martin and blount as well as carl nicks on the line. Will this be another week of struggling against the run in your opinion?

Todd Archer
  (1:36 PM)

Blount didn't have a carry last week. Martin has a little something to him but neither one is Marshawn Lynch. That being said the Bucs will test the run defense. They'd be foolish not to. I'd steal some of thos Seahawks runs and make sure the Cowboys have made an adjustment, especially on those back side plays.

Craig (Lindsay, ON)

I don't want to be down on Ware because he is great...but it seems that when he is really needed to make a play he doesn't and most of his sacks come in nothing moments...and what do you think it will take for Dez to become elite, or are his skills not of that calibre?

Todd Archer
  (1:38 PM)

Such an over-reaction on Ware. Don't believe the generalizations on when he gets his sacks. Were the sacks in NY not crucial even if one didn't come late in the game? As for Dez, he is a tremendous athlete. That doesn't make him a tremendous football player. It's not happened yet. Maybe it will but there's something not clicking with him so far.

calvin (nyc)

do oyu think theory of getting off press coverage in seattle is overblown because they face press coverage in practice everyday

Todd Archer
  (1:40 PM)

They don't really face it every day in practice because they go against what the other team will do, not what the Cowboys D will do. In camp, yes. In season, no. Austin is the best receiver they have against press because he's quick. Dez isn't as good because he just tries to overpower corners. Remember, TO wasn't good against press either.

Aggie (TX)

Is Joe D on the hot seat? I can't remember a single season where ST was our strength.

Todd Archer
  (1:41 PM)

I doubt it. The Cowboys blocked him from going to Oakland and Jacksonville. It's difficult to make an in-season move like that. The coverage teams are usually pretty good. The punt return is OK. The kick return game has been dreadful. They need to junk that plan and try something else.

Dean (dALLAS)

Is Mo Claiborne Holding his own out there because he has yet to been tested?

Todd Archer
  (1:42 PM)

He's been OK. The Seahawks tested him early with a deep ball and he broke up the floater from Wilson. He'll be tested more this week I think.

Todd Archer
  (1:46 PM)

Thanks for all of the questions, folks. If you have more, send me an e-mail. Also check me out on Twitter (@toddarcher) if you have more question there too. See you again next week. Courage.