After Dallas' performance on Wednesday night against the Giants, many experts and fans said the Cowboys made a statement by going into New York (technically New Jersey) and beating the defending Super Bowl Champions. Because of this victory, people are already saying that the Cowboys are primed for a playoff run.
Indeed, it was a statement by the Cowboys. Tony Romo had a career game, passing for over 300 yards, 3 touchdowns, and the Defense did a great job of applying pressure to Eli Manning. Despite the productive showing of Dallas, there are still a few issues that need to be addressed.
Witten showed his toughness by playing in the season opener despite a spleen injury and was even willing to sign a waiver. The fact of the matter is he is not 100%. Witten's role was greatly reduced against the Giants as he was not really incorporated into the passing game, primarily being used for blocking in the running game. When healthy, Witten is one of the better Tight Ends in the league. Not only does he provide vital production in the offensive game, but his veteran status provides great leadership for the younger players.
Don't get me wrong, DeMarco Murray had a great game and looks like he's going to be a quality running back in the future. Felix Jones also provides the team with productive carries (After all, he led the NFL in rushing yards per attempt in 2009) but Dallas' running game is still rather young and inexperienced. After Murray and Jones, the Cowboys really don't have anyone else on the depth chart at running back.
Tony Romo is the best quarterback Dallas has had since Troy Aikman ,and like Aikman, he has put up good numbers over the course of his career. The only difference is that Aikman has also performed well in critical must win situations. Despite relatively successful performances in the regular season, Romo has not fared to well in the playoffs.(1-3) In 2007, Romo mishandled a snap on a FG attempt which he then tried running in the end zone for a TD only to be stopped on the 1 yard line. The following season it looked as if Romo was getting ready to redeem himself, as the Cowboys posted a 13-3 record and the #1 Seed in the NFC, only to once again come up short as the Cowboys were upset by the #6 seed and eventual Super Bowl Champion New York Giants. Since then the Cowboys only appeared in the playoffs one other time (beating Philadelphia then losing to Minnesota in the 2010 playoffs. In order for Dallas to make a primed playoff run, they are going to need Romo to step it up and play at a whole different level.
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