The Cowboys were frustrated, fading, imploding…and then the game started and things got even worse.
If a team and a season can be on the line by Week 5, the Cowboys were walking said line like a drunken amputee on a oily tightrope when regulation time ended in Kansas City yesterday.
But they prevailed in overtime thanks to Miles Austin, who made up for dropping three passes in the end zone by catching two touchdowns and winning the game in overtime.
First I’ve got to say the throwback jerseys look great, particularly the Chiefs’ helmets adorned with Texas state designs with a little star to signify the location of Dallas (shown here in Fort Worth Star-Telegram photographer Rodger Mallison’s game photos). I’ve always loved those dark blue jerseys with the star-studded white shoulders ever since the days of Dandy Don Meredith. A few years ago I saw Meredith in his hometown of Mount Vernon in East Texas. He looked grayer and older but still lean and handsome with that trademark twinkle in his eye. I asked him to autograph a pack of Doral cigarettes and he fished out a smoke for himself with a wink and a grin.
Anyway, back to the game: Patrick Crayton has no business handling punts anymore. He’s on punt probation. He fumbled the first one kicked to him, but the referee ruled the play dead. Then he fumbled the next one for real. Terrence Newman replaced him and allowed a punt to sail over his head at the 20 and get downed near the Cowboys end zone.
Big Jimbo, my football fanatic friend from East Texas, barely escaped a coronary during yesterday’s game and was still feeling queasy this morning: “All of the positives (and there were many including a W) were completely overshadowed by the fumbles, penalties, and bonehead plays,” he said. “And once more the defense was unable to make a game-winning stop at the end of the game.”
Jimbo is worried about Tony Romo’s inaccurate throws, Marcus Bennett’s continued no-shows, and Wade Phillips’ perpetually puzzled looks. And he thinks Austin’s showboating cost them a touchdown in a tight game. “Austin should have caught the ball in the corner of the end zone in the first quarter,” Jimbo said. “It looked to me like he was going for a one-handed circus catch instead of laying out with both hands.”
Austin, of course, atoned for his sins.
“Tashard Choice appears to be the real deal; very impressive,” Jimbo continued. “Jay Ratliff is playing at an All-Pro level. Austin is bigger and stronger than I realized. DeMarcus Ware getting two sacks should help his confidence.”
I’m wondering why this fancy place kicker we signed isn’t putting the ball into the end zone like he was early in the season.
I’m also wondering why Troy Aikman’s wedding ring is so freaking big. During the game, the camera went to Aikman and Joe Buck talking in the booth and I thought Aikman was wearing a Super Bowl ring. But upon closer inspection, it was on his left hand, third finger, and appeared to be the biggest and most garish wedding ring ever made.
Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel showed a lot of heart and toughness, getting drilled senseless all day long but keeping himself and his team in the game to the end.
Play of the Game – Ratliff hurdling the Chiefs offensive line and blocking a fourth quarter field goal attempt that would have put the Chiefs ahead.
Game Balls — Austin on offense and Keith Brooking on defense. The special teams owe us a ball.
Bench the Bum Award – Once again this goes to Flozell Adams for being the most penalized O-lineman since the dawn of time.