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  1. #1
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    What changes do the Cowboys need to make?

    What do you think is the biggest issue plaguing the Cowboys right now?

    Obviously injuries are a big issue for us right now. Losing Lee means our defense is just terrible and we are 0-4 now in games without Lee. But, we held the Eagles in check in the first half defensively before falling apart in the second half, so that tells me we have the ability to play good defense without Lee.

    I think aside from injuries, our coaching staff might be our biggest problem right now. It's clear that Garrett is being absolutely outcoached each and every game. He cannot deal with injuries at all. Every other team in the NFL can deal with non-QB injuries and still compete. We lose two guys, Lee and Smith, and our team completely crumbles. Those guys are great, but the coaching staff needs to be able to make adjustments to their absence and create conditions that lead to successful football. The play calls on some third downs are also absolutely mind boggling. A draw play to Rod Smith on 3rd and 5 when we need to get a score to stay in the game? I get it if you're planning on going for it on 4th down but they weren't.

    This is to say nothing of their inability to make in-game adjustments. The Cowboys are last in the NFL in points allowed in the 3rd quarter and 29th in points allowed in the second half overall. In contrast, the Cowboys are 11th in first half scoring defense. This tells me that Garrett is decent at pre-game planning but absolutely terrible at halftime adjustments. Our entire coaching staff is just getting out-coached and if it keeps going like this then a change absolutely has to happen this year. They'll use the Zeke excuse and say those distractions are why we didn't do well (but isn't that supposed to be Garrett's calling card? Leading through adversity?)

    Anyway, I think their biggest issue right now is the lack of good in-game adjustments and lack of good coaching overall. We have the talent to win games and play well, but they aren't doing it and aren't putting our players in position to win.

  2. #2
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    Coaching staff is terrible at making halftime adjustments. I thought Bell played good in place of Smith. I would start with coaching changes. Also draft or sign 2 offensive lineman. Trade Dez, he has less than a 50% reception ratio. I think Dak plays better without Dez in the lineup. Until yesterday I would have said a better return man. On the other side of the ball, draft or sign a big body for in the middle and someone talk to Irving about charging up the field for steam. They need at 1 more linebacker unless Smith can come back 100% next year.

    If I had 1 thing to change it would be coaching staff now.

  3. #3
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    I agree I would have to say it is the coaching staff and their inability to make in game adjustments... It seems like we always play well in the first half and then come out and play terrible in second half. This is 2 games in a row we had the lead at half and were playing well and then get destroyed in the second half. Its almost like garrett just says keep doing what your doing guys just because we have a lead and doesn't adjust at all to whats going on. Ive been saying since day 1 that Garrett is not the guy to get us where we want to be. The whole coaching staff needs to go.

    I also think we need a new wr core. I have stated time and time again we have no one that scares anyone in our receiving core. Dez isn't even a top 25 wr anymore... Twill has absolutely no hands and teams have now figured out Beasley... we could also use a more explosive tight end.

  4. #4
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    I will disagree with the TE, Witten might not be the fastest but he isn't targeted that often. He can still get it done in the receiving game, just don't expect him to out run someone to the end zone.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mamba42 View Post
    What do you think is the biggest issue plaguing the Cowboys right now?

    Obviously injuries are a big issue for us right now. Losing Lee means our defense is just terrible and we are 0-4 now in games without Lee. But, we held the Eagles in check in the first half defensively before falling apart in the second half, so that tells me we have the ability to play good defense without Lee.

    I think aside from injuries, our coaching staff might be our biggest problem right now. It's clear that Garrett is being absolutely outcoached each and every game. He cannot deal with injuries at all. Every other team in the NFL can deal with non-QB injuries and still compete. We lose two guys, Lee and Smith, and our team completely crumbles. Those guys are great, but the coaching staff needs to be able to make adjustments to their absence and create conditions that lead to successful football. The play calls on some third downs are also absolutely mind boggling. A draw play to Rod Smith on 3rd and 5 when we need to get a score to stay in the game? I get it if you're planning on going for it on 4th down but they weren't.

    This is to say nothing of their inability to make in-game adjustments. The Cowboys are last in the NFL in points allowed in the 3rd quarter and 29th in points allowed in the second half overall. In contrast, the Cowboys are 11th in first half scoring defense. This tells me that Garrett is decent at pre-game planning but absolutely terrible at halftime adjustments. Our entire coaching staff is just getting out-coached and if it keeps going like this then a change absolutely has to happen this year. They'll use the Zeke excuse and say those distractions are why we didn't do well (but isn't that supposed to be Garrett's calling card? Leading through adversity?)

    Anyway, I think their biggest issue right now is the lack of good in-game adjustments and lack of good coaching overall. We have the talent to win games and play well, but they aren't doing it and aren't putting our players in position to win.
    That's because we over-rely on the talent of our players. Having Tyron Smith, Sean Lee, Zeke erases a lot of holes and mistakes...when their significant talent level is not there, the team suddenly doesn't look so great. Same thing, when we had Tony Romo....when he was out, we lost almost every game. I don't think the coaching staff is the worst...I think they are just average or slightly above average.... but, there's a noticeable difference when you see the elite coaches and what they can do. Some of the elite coaches seem to be able to draw up plays with much more misdirection. That being said, I think our o-line is by reputation from past years....this is not the same line...we don't have Ronald Leary....and Leary is just better than whoever we have there this year. Our right tackle is not better than what we had last year.

    I think we just need more depth at linebacker....Sean Lee won't be healthy for every game---it's the way he plays, where he flies to the ball. It's one of the most violent positions, so you're going to need extra guys that play at a high level there if someone gets injured. I agree on the wr core.... if you freeze the game tape, you'll notice that our receivers do not get that much separation. Dak almost has to thread it in there at times...and that's why we rely so heavily on play action. If you have a speedy receiver that scares corners, they would play off. Losing Tyron and Zeke has been devastating because it's really taken away the strengths that were hiding our weaknesses--we only get separation when the defense has to worry about Zeke and the play action.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by lbz88 View Post
    I will disagree with the TE, Witten might not be the fastest but he isn't targeted that often. He can still get it done in the receiving game, just don't expect him to out run someone to the end zone.
    I didn't say we should get rid of Witten... I was saying we could use someone more explosive maybe gathers could be that guy?

  7. #7
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    Heres my take. Like pretty much everyone else I agree that Garrett and his staff are a huge part of the problem. Just like you guys have said, he is not good at making adjustments. Either in game, at the half, or game to game. Ive said it before and Ill say it again, I think Jim Harbaugh would be the bereft coach for this team. The style he likes to play fits the personnel on this team perfectly. The only problem with bringing in Harbaugh is Jerry. Jerry wants a yes man and Harbaugh is not that guy. Hes more Parcells/Jimmy than Jason Garrett. Thats the first change Id make.

    Second, Id improve the depth. Id spent some FA money on the OL and at LB. this may sound crazy but Id look at what Cleveland is going to do with Joe Thomas in the off season. He has a $1 mil roster bonus in the off season and if picked up will have a $10.3 mil cap hit (Ill post the link where I got these numbers). I dont see why Cleveland would pick up that option. Id make some cap room (Stephen needs to do what hes touted for) and convince Joe Thomas to sign on to be the RT. Then move Collins back to LG.

    I would also move Jaylon to the Strong Side. He showed some promise against the Eagles in the 1st half. I wasnt completely disgusted with his performance which is an improvement. His cap hit is not bad and he still has time to prove himself. He would just have to do it playing the SAM if it were up to me. I would then use one of my first three picks on a MLB. We need to get to a point where Hitchens is the 1st backup at all three LB positions and then Jaylon is the other backup. They should not be inept by losing 1 LB even if that LB is Sean Lee.

    Then I would consider signing Adrian Peterson to backup Zeke. Hes obviously an older back but does still clearly have some left in the tank. AD gets to finish his career playing for his favorite team.

    Those are the main things I would do. Im sure Ill end up adding to it.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by lbz88 View Post
    Coaching staff is terrible at making halftime adjustments. I thought Bell played good in place of Smith. I would start with coaching changes. Also draft or sign 2 offensive lineman. Trade Dez, he has less than a 50% reception ratio. I think Dak plays better without Dez in the lineup. Until yesterday I would have said a better return man. On the other side of the ball, draft or sign a big body for in the middle and someone talk to Irving about charging up the field for steam. They need at 1 more linebacker unless Smith can come back 100% next year.

    If I had 1 thing to change it would be coaching staff now.
    Dez certainly hasn't been playing like one. Young Dez would have destroyed Darby on those one on one screen plays. I think the injuries have just sapped a lot from him at this point. I'm thinking he'll be most effective in an Anquan Boldin-like role going forward. That is, first downs and in the red-zone. Those deep, explosive plays will be rare I'm thinking. That's partly on Dez but also partly on Dak where he hasn't quite figured out where to throw him the ball exactly. But yeah, I agree, maybe we should draft a young guy to help out Dez and make some plays. I wasn't opposed to drafting a guy like Mike Williams if he had fallen to us this year, and I think we should be more active in finding a good complement to Dez going forward too.

    Quote Originally Posted by KiNgJaMeS315 View Post
    I agree I would have to say it is the coaching staff and their inability to make in game adjustments... It seems like we always play well in the first half and then come out and play terrible in second half. This is 2 games in a row we had the lead at half and were playing well and then get destroyed in the second half. Its almost like garrett just says keep doing what your doing guys just because we have a lead and doesn't adjust at all to whats going on. Ive been saying since day 1 that Garrett is not the guy to get us where we want to be. The whole coaching staff needs to go.

    I also think we need a new wr core. I have stated time and time again we have no one that scares anyone in our receiving core. Dez isn't even a top 25 wr anymore... Twill has absolutely no hands and teams have now figured out Beasley... we could also use a more explosive tight end.
    Yep, JG might need to go if he can't turn this around. As I said above, I think Dez can still be good but he's not exactly a top 3-5 WR anymore. I think he is certainly still a top 25 guy (I can't name 25 guys I'd rather have than him), but he's lost a stop due to injuries I think.

    Quote Originally Posted by rocketfuel View Post
    That's because we over-rely on the talent of our players. Having Tyron Smith, Sean Lee, Zeke erases a lot of holes and mistakes...when their significant talent level is not there, the team suddenly doesn't look so great. Same thing, when we had Tony Romo....when he was out, we lost almost every game. I don't think the coaching staff is the worst...I think they are just average or slightly above average.... but, there's a noticeable difference when you see the elite coaches and what they can do. Some of the elite coaches seem to be able to draw up plays with much more misdirection. That being said, I think our o-line is by reputation from past years....this is not the same line...we don't have Ronald Leary....and Leary is just better than whoever we have there this year. Our right tackle is not better than what we had last year.

    I think we just need more depth at linebacker....Sean Lee won't be healthy for every game---it's the way he plays, where he flies to the ball. It's one of the most violent positions, so you're going to need extra guys that play at a high level there if someone gets injured. I agree on the wr core.... if you freeze the game tape, you'll notice that our receivers do not get that much separation. Dak almost has to thread it in there at times...and that's why we rely so heavily on play action. If you have a speedy receiver that scares corners, they would play off. Losing Tyron and Zeke has been devastating because it's really taken away the strengths that were hiding our weaknesses--we only get separation when the defense has to worry about Zeke and the play action.
    I think Collins has done a better job than Free at RT. A big problem is that when our line started to jell we got Smith injured and lost Zeke. So that threw a wrench in everything I think. I wouldn't mind moving Collins back to LG though, like Mr. B said. I also think you're right about Lee not being healthy given his play style. I hope that Jaylon can build off of his solid play in the first half against the Eagles, he looked better. I still think as he heals and plays more he can be a really explosive player for us. Maybe the heir to Sean Lee as our defensive captain.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.B View Post
    Heres my take. Like pretty much everyone else I agree that Garrett and his staff are a huge part of the problem. Just like you guys have said, he is not good at making adjustments. Either in game, at the half, or game to game. Ive said it before and Ill say it again, I think Jim Harbaugh would be the bereft coach for this team. The style he likes to play fits the personnel on this team perfectly. The only problem with bringing in Harbaugh is Jerry. Jerry wants a yes man and Harbaugh is not that guy. Hes more Parcells/Jimmy than Jason Garrett. Thats the first change Id make.

    Second, Id improve the depth. Id spent some FA money on the OL and at LB. this may sound crazy but Id look at what Cleveland is going to do with Joe Thomas in the off season. He has a $1 mil roster bonus in the off season and if picked up will have a $10.3 mil cap hit (Ill post the link where I got these numbers). I dont see why Cleveland would pick up that option. Id make some cap room (Stephen needs to do what hes touted for) and convince Joe Thomas to sign on to be the RT. Then move Collins back to LG.

    I would also move Jaylon to the Strong Side. He showed some promise against the Eagles in the 1st half. I wasnt completely disgusted with his performance which is an improvement. His cap hit is not bad and he still has time to prove himself. He would just have to do it playing the SAM if it were up to me. I would then use one of my first three picks on a MLB. We need to get to a point where Hitchens is the 1st backup at all three LB positions and then Jaylon is the other backup. They should not be inept by losing 1 LB even if that LB is Sean Lee.

    Then I would consider signing Adrian Peterson to backup Zeke. Hes obviously an older back but does still clearly have some left in the tank. AD gets to finish his career playing for his favorite team.

    Those are the main things I would do. Im sure Ill end up adding to it.
    Interesting point on Joe Thomas. That'd be a great signing for us I think. He's not young, but we don't need a young guy. I like Collins more at LG too. That line would be nasty. I'm just not sure we should put more money into the line when we have such glaring needs elsewhere too (like WR and LB).

    Peterson would be a good backup for Zeke, I agree. I wouldn't be shocked at all if we did that. Morris has played well in the games so far, but I'd rather have Peterson and Rod Smith backing up Zeke. We can let Morris and McFadden walk next year.

    I'd love love love Harbaugh to be our coach. He'd be the perfect fit, but you're right that Jerry probably wouldn't go for it. We need a change though and we need that change to be a fiery guy like Harbaugh.

  9. #9
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    On offense the mistake were making is to try and keep our identity with Zeke out. Morris is not Zeke. I know his stats are not bad but most of his yards are in garbage time. Our first 3 drives of both games he can't get 3 yard
    runs!
    I would try 5 wr formations. Quick hitches to Beasly and Williams. Run some reverses and a little no huddle.
    Got to pass FIRST to set up the run. Quick throws and a lot of options. Anything to make us unpredictable.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mariner4life View Post
    On offense the mistake were making is to try and keep our identity with Zeke out. Morris is not Zeke. I know his stats are not bad but most of his yards are in garbage time. Our first 3 drives of both games he can't get 3 yard
    runs!
    I would try 5 wr formations. Quick hitches to Beasly and Williams. Run some reverses and a little no huddle.
    Got to pass FIRST to set up the run. Quick throws and a lot of options. Anything to make us unpredictable.
    Starting out the game we are fine. This is the stuff that should be done after halftime. Mix up the defense some. Also think Dak needs to learn to control the clock better. Romo wouldn't snap the ball until the last possible second, this keeps our defense off the field longer and they got away from this it seems.

  11. #11
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    We play a certain style and unfortunately, we lost the key players that make that work. We rely heavily on the play action, but that doesn't work as well without the threat of Zeke because now it's keyed in on Dak and our backups haven't punished teams for doing that. Without Tyronn, we can't give Dak enough time in the pocket, so he has to throw on the move. And Sean Lee holds down the fort because he erases a lot of mistakes and it's not noticed until he's not there. Maybe this is where coaching comes in because we can't seem to win in any other way. We saw this in the playoffs and we see this whenever a team takes us out of our comfort zone. What happens is usually the other side forcing us to play a different way to win and we don't have an alternate way to win. It's not as apparent when Tyron and Zeke are there because they're dominant enough that much of the times we can force our style of play.

    Regardless of how Dez does, I do think we need a speed threat that scares teams. Someone that can create separation on his own...and not rely on play action or Zeke.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.B View Post
    Heres my take. Like pretty much everyone else I agree that Garrett and his staff are a huge part of the problem. Just like you guys have said, he is not good at making adjustments. Either in game, at the half, or game to game. Ive said it before and Ill say it again, I think Jim Harbaugh would be the bereft coach for this team. The style he likes to play fits the personnel on this team perfectly. The only problem with bringing in Harbaugh is Jerry. Jerry wants a yes man and Harbaugh is not that guy. Hes more Parcells/Jimmy than Jason Garrett. Thats the first change Id make.

    Second, Id improve the depth. Id spent some FA money on the OL and at LB. this may sound crazy but Id look at what Cleveland is going to do with Joe Thomas in the off season. He has a $1 mil roster bonus in the off season and if picked up will have a $10.3 mil cap hit (Ill post the link where I got these numbers). I dont see why Cleveland would pick up that option. Id make some cap room (Stephen needs to do what hes touted for) and convince Joe Thomas to sign on to be the RT. Then move Collins back to LG.

    I would also move Jaylon to the Strong Side. He showed some promise against the Eagles in the 1st half. I wasnt completely disgusted with his performance which is an improvement. His cap hit is not bad and he still has time to prove himself. He would just have to do it playing the SAM if it were up to me. I would then use one of my first three picks on a MLB. We need to get to a point where Hitchens is the 1st backup at all three LB positions and then Jaylon is the other backup. They should not be inept by losing 1 LB even if that LB is Sean Lee.

    Then I would consider signing Adrian Peterson to backup Zeke. Hes obviously an older back but does still clearly have some left in the tank. AD gets to finish his career playing for his favorite team.

    Those are the main things I would do. Im sure Ill end up adding to it.
    I cant agree more harbaugh would be perfect.. I agree with your other points as well
    Last edited by KiNgJaMeS315; 11-22-2017 at 02:23 AM.

  13. #13
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    Last time I checked we lost our first 3 games with Zeke in the line up and Dak playing well. Until 3 games ago it was the best first 25 game performance by a QB in history. I put the problem completely at the organizational level including Jason ****ing Garrett and his antiquated offensive philosophy of very little deception. Amazing how a change in coaching staff made a 180 degree difference with Rams when they went away from the overrated and antiquated Fisher to the ultra inventive McVay. I would like to see the Boys do the same thing. Also hurts to have a first round bust like Taco when a guy like TJ Watt could have been awesome in a roving LB/DE position but of course we are so wed to a defensive philosophy we couldn't possibly take the best D player on the board we had to take a ****ing "scheme fit". Perhaps those that say we will never win it all while Jerry is still above ground are on to something. Just sayin...

  14. #14
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    I heard this on the Fan the other day and completely agree.

    This team is coached to beat the man in front of you. That works great when you have a slew of All Pros but what happens when those guys are out? You have to be able to mix it up. Call plays to get your WRs open. Move the pocket to help give Dak some tim to throw the ball. Garrett and Linehan seem incapable of adjusting.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.B View Post
    I heard this on the Fan the other day and completely agree.

    This team is coached to beat the man in front of you. That works great when you have a slew of All Pros but what happens when those guys are out? You have to be able to mix it up. Call plays to get your WRs open. Move the pocket to help give Dak some tim to throw the ball. Garrett and Linehan seem incapable of adjusting.
    I was watching the Rams game a few weeks ago and I saw Sean McVay design this play that was almost impossible to defend--it was so creative and full of misdirection. I don't see that enough with our offense. Our motto seems to be that we're going to dictate our style, but what happens in situations where we can't (i.e. Tyron, Zeke or Zach Martin being out). The Patriots don't always have the fastest receivers, their line has issues sometimes and their QB is hardly mobile, but their coaching staff knows how to design a system that makes the sum stronger than their parts. One opponent says that the Patriots can go through half the season and not have the same game plan so it's hard to plan for them. As for our defense, I felt like it was a mistake to keep blitzing Phillip Rivers. Every time they did it, he would burn us for a big play. I understand the reasoning, but a coach should have a better feel for not blitzing certain quarterbacks.

    That being said.....I don't think it's all on the coaching staff. I think the team's not balanced--you have some big stars that are masking the major flaws of the team. Sean Lee hides a lot of the problems. Our running game was also masking a lot of our problems on defense and in the passing game. The teams that seem to go far in the playoffs are all very balanced....and most of them (other than the Packers) have had very strong secondary play.

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