Earlier this week I laid out the case how the 2012 Dallas Cowboys were learning to become winners and today proved exactly that. The Cowboys have been injured, they’ve faced adversity and oh by the way, they are tied for first in the NFC East.
Instead of finding new ways to lose, which they seemed to do for the first year and a half in Jason Garrett’s coaching career, they are now finding ways to win. That’s the sign of a winning team.
The Cowboys sit at 8-6 with their playoff fate in their control; they win out and they win the NFC East and a playoff berth. First things first though. How about America’a Team!
If you’ve read my columns all week about the Cowboys, the one thing I mentioned in every single one was that the Dallas Cowboys were America’s Team. Whether you believe it or not makes no difference because it’s true. This week, maybe more than any other, tests that premise as a Cowboys fan. In reality it’s never been really questioned but there are plenty of Pittsburgh Steelers fans who believe that. Today, they were shown who is truly America’s Team, the Dallas Cowboys.
OK, that’s enough of the fluff at the Steelers’ expense because the bottom line is the Cowboys have now won five of their last six games. I hope that sinks in for you because for a team that’s had an identity as quitters and chokers, the 2012 Cowboys are anything but either one of those.
They could’ve quit after the loss to the Atlanta Falcons left them at 3-5 and on the outside looking in; and I’m not just talking about the playoffs. I mean they were looking in at the better teams in the NFL and trying to figure out how to win games that mattered. They aren’t on the outside anymore. In fact, they are right in the middle of the playoff picture and playing winning football.
Does that sound funny to any of you?
A year ago at this time the Cowboys were blowing double digit leads in the fourth quarter and finding ways to lose. Turnovers and poor defense down the stretch last year, have turned into big plays from Tony Romo and sacks by the defense this year.
Everything that could go wrong for the Cowboys often did last year, the lights got into Miles Austins’ eyes last year and affected the entire season for the Cowboys last year. This season, not even crippling injuries can derail this team. Don’t look now but the Cowboys are turning into winners.
That was an injured DeMarcus Ware out there at half his normal self getting a big fourth quarter sack. That was the injured Dez Bryant out there making plays with a dislocated finger, scoring a touchdown and that was the Cowboys MVP Anthony Spencer out there with two huge fourth quarter sacks to keep the Cowboys in the game.
That was also Tony Romo, by the way, throwing for 341 yards and two touchdowns against the best defense (statistically) in the NFL. And if anyone doubted that Romo could play winning football when it matters most, since the Falcons game, Romo has thrown for 12 touchdowns and thrown only three interceptions. Not surprisingly, the Cowboys are 5-1 in those games.
The Dallas Cowboys are playing winning football when it matters most and no matter what happens in the next two games, they deserve to be applauded. These aren’t Wade Phillips’ Cowboys anymore, they are Jason Garrett’s team and Garrett has taught his team how to play winning football.
Anyone asking who is America’s Team got their answer again tonight, and it’s been the same for the past 34 years, the Dallas Cowboys.
Sorry, I couldn’t resist throwing it out there one last time.
you can contact or follow Ben on twitter @BenGrimaldi