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Slow Start, Penalties Too Much For Cowboys To Overcome In 48-27 Loss To Patriots

romo-v-pats.jpgThis was the first time the Cowboys were unable to recover from yet another slow, sluggish start to win.  After basically giving the Patriots a 14-0 lead in the first quarter, the Cowboys battled back but came up short.  After taking a brief 24-21 lead late in the third quarter, New England scored 17 unanswered points to put the game out-of-reach for Dallas and won it going away 48-27..

I have to say, it was a good game until New England drove 80-yards and ran 8+ minutes off the clock in the fourth quarter scoring a touchdown after Dallas decided to kick a field goal on 4th and goal on their last possession to close the  score to 31-24.  The last touchdown by New England, somewhat of a slap in the face, was meaningless as the 14-point deficit at that point was more than sufficient to win the game.

There are two overwhelming statistitics that come to mind in this game, other than the non-existent first quarter play of the Cowboys.  First, the ability of New England to convert almost every third down early in the game, and second, the penalty ratio.  Now I am not going to rail against every call, but there were several questionable penalties that favored the Patriots, especially after Dallas had taken the lead, 24-21.  Namely, the pass interference call giving the Pats first-and-goal at the Dallas 1-yard line when Patriots WR Randy Moss clearly ran into S Patrick Watkins in the endzone, but more on that later. 

Of course, the only turnover by Dallas was the killer.  After giving up a long touchdown pass to Donte Stallworth, Tony Romo threw a very questionable pass on Dallas’ next possession that ended their chances for any hope of a comeback and set-up a very efficient New England offense deep in Cowboys territory.  At that point, I knew the game was over, as I’m sure most of the fans at Texas Stadium did.

 Against a good team, you can not afford to commit any type of mistake and although they played a good game, mistakes were ultimately Dallas’ downfall.  Failure to put forth any offense in the beginning of the game and costly penalties prevented them from any chance of winning this game.

New England has a very good team, there is no doubting that, but when everything goes their way, as it did tonight, it takes a superhuman effort to beat them.  I am a little concerned with the obvious favoritism given to the Patriots, but I will address that at another time. 

Dallas still controls their destiny and the NFC East.  As it stands, they have a one-game lead over Washington and two over the always dangerous Eagles.  If Terry Glenn and Anthony Henry were healthy and playing in this game, then it isn’t entirely impossible things could have went differently tonight,  but that is the way it was and nothing can be changed, for now.  However, these two game-changing players will be available later this year. 

Now, Dallas must focus on winning their next game at home against the resurgent Vikings and maintain their division lead.  This game is nothing more than a learning-curve and should be considered as such by the coaching staff.  Regardless of what the media is going to say about the Cowboys after this game, I still believe they can play against any team in the league.

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4 Responses to “Slow Start, Penalties Too Much For Cowboys To Overcome In 48-27 Loss To Patriots”

  1. Nate Acreman says:

    I don’t think the slow start had anything to do with the loss. The Cowboys were able to come back in the second quarter, and eventually lead in the third. The problem wasn’t on offense as much (with the exception of penalties) but the Cowboys defense inability to stop New England from getting their third down conversions. One or two more stops in this game would have been a lot closer. Who knows the Cowboys offense might have even been able to get more going.

  2. sacpd says:

    The slow start had plenty to do with it…the Pats almost doubled our time of possession and by the mid of 3rd Quarter they were running out of gas.. The offense, at a minimum, could have least made a few first downs in the first 3 series, but they failed…

    By the way, their early failings allowed their talented offense great field position…

    Going into the game, I knew that time of possession was going to be KEY for us…Brady and Co. can’t score if their sitting next to the Gatorade and with our penchant of wearing defenses out late in the game, thats what would have happened.

    With all that said, the Boyz showed alot of heart, the refs made some good & BAD calls (T.O. was pushed out of bounds on that catch & bad call on Hatcher’s roughing the passer), I was tired of listening to PHIL SIMMS, besides the penalties the O-line played well (low sacks / decent running game), dink and dunk offense would have kept the ball more, and i like Wade Phillips…

    Ride-On Cowboys!!

  3. gardnerhey says:

    I have to agree with you on the penalties not being called or phantom penalties being called. But I want to point out that it went both ways. The refs evened out the PI call for Moss against Pat Watkins with a phantom one against Moss. Also don’t know which lineman it was that didn’t get called for holding when he ripped Rodney Harrison away from Barber, or was it Jones, in the endzone just as Rodney was going to tackle him for a safety.

  4. sacpd says:

    refs make up call against Moss did not put us on the 1 yard line with goal-to-go…a better payback would have been a no call on that flag when Owens and Whitten were in motion ‘barely’ at the same time, which of course negated a 23 yard 1st down by T.O. with momentum….but oh well, on to the vikings…

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