Thursday, November 25, 2010
Behind The Scoreboard
Changes in Dallas
It happened without a lot of hoop-la and fanfare. The beleaguered coach of “America’s Team” was shown the gate prior to the Cowboys’ game with the New York Giants. It would be safe to say that Wade Phillips knew that his demise was imminent. There are Dallas fans who had been calling for the action since shortly after the current campaign began.
The Cowboys didn’t reach very far to find a viable replacement for Phillips. As is customary, the franchise elevated one of its own. Jason Garrett humbly accepted the new responsibility and his new title of “interim head coach.” He had only praise for his former boss and said he had learned a lot from Phillips.
Garrett had an almost immediate baptism by fire. His first test was to take the Cowboys and their 1-7 record on the road to try and corral the New York Giants and their 6-2 mark. If you were privy to the odds before that meeting, then you know they were not very uplifting. They had the NFL number one defense fairly crushing the Cowboys. How does the old line go? “But a wonder came to light to show the rogues they lied.” The Vaqueros battled through the negativity and saddled the Giants with loss number three.
Next up for the Cowboys was this past Sunday’s contest with the Detroit Lions (after an early press deadline for this article). And the Lions’ record? Would you believe 2-7, same as the Cowboys. Will Jon Kitna, taking over for the injury sidelined Tony Romo, be up to pulling Dallas through again? You can bet America will be watching its team.
Dallas wasn’t the only entity drawing a bag of attention last week. The Titans were patting themselves on the back for claiming Randy Moss off the waivers roster. Tennessee has had some ups and downs and before they met the Dolphins November 14, had been on the ups, tied with the Colts for the lead in the AFC South. But these things never quite work out as earlier conceived. Moss’ debut with his third team this season was less than stellar. The Titans lost to Miami and an old teammate of Moss, Chad Pennington, QB for the Dolphins. Titan bosses stand by their decision to acquire Moss and say he will be given the support needed to contribute to Tennessee’s future.
Last week was week 11 in the NFL and unlike the collegiate ranks, all the unbeatens had disappeared from the landscape. The best records in the NFL were 7-2 (N.Y. Jets, New England, Atlanta) and 7-3 (Chicago). But this is the NFL and the landscape is subject to change on any given Sunday. Hey, just ask my Kansas City Chiefs.
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