The most improved aspect of the Dallas Cowboys in 2014 is going to be their secondary, and yes, that includes the safety play.
It’s definitely insane to hear that for most people, mainly because the defense spent most of last season getting absolutely burned by opposing quarterbacks; but things are going to look different this season. Part of that is due to the fact that I believe Scott Linehan will stand true to his line about “running more and throwing more deep passes” (with the first part of that being the important part).
The more that the Cowboys run the ball with DeMarco Murray and Lance Dunbar, the more time the defense gets to spend on the bench resting up. That’s one reason why, but on top of that, I expect the Cowboys’ offense to be fun to watch this season. But they will also to be smart at the times where they just flat out weren’t smart last season. Up late in the game? Run the football and possibly mix in a quick play action pass sometimes. The Cowboys had an awful way about them of throwing, throwing, throwing and throwing until the defenses were just sitting back waiting on the pass. Expect a change this season at least to some extent.
The other reason why I believe that the secondary is going to be the most improved is that they have a fire lit under them thanks to new defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli. Marinelli is giving the cornerbacks plenty of chances to make plays, and he has complete confidence in them. Brandon Carr put it best when he said that he’s ready to “take over the league” and “become that shutdown corner.”
The hype will always be there for the Cowboys, but this year people actually expect their defense to be awful. They’ll be ready to play with a huge chip on their shoulder in 2014.