Here's a little provalone for my puke pals...I say we just hand over the trophy to them now...
July Brings Out Sentiment, Excitement
-- Greg Forshay, Dallas Cowboys
Cowboys Football fans everywhere are beginning to salivate. It’s like you’ve placed your order at your favorite steakhouse and are just waiting for them to bring that slab of beef to your table, hoping it is cooked juuuuuust right. Yes, Bocephus, we are ready for some football!
But alas, we must wait. We were allowed to wet our appetites with the waves of free agency, the draft, the mini-camps and the OTAs. But now we have to wait. And wait. And wait. Three more weeks and counting until the start of Camp Cowboys and for the rest of the NFL teams, give or take a few days. In times like these, I like to reflect, and even do a little prognosticating about the upcoming season.
For example, the Dallas Cowboys have a winning tradition that is hard to argue; 5 Super Bowl wins in 8 Super Bowl appearances, 16 NFC/NFL Championship games, 19 Division Championships, 28 Playoff appearances, and 20 consecutive winning seasons. That’s a whole lotta winning!
But we, the fans, want more. We’re used to winning, and anything less is unacceptable. It’s been eleven years since the Cowboys won a playoff game, and twelve years since they won a Super Bowl. I know, I know…for teams like the Cardinals and the Browns whose team highlights are all in black and white, this sounds like Bill Gates complaining about his taxes. But those fans are used to not winning championships…it’s a real hardship for us!
I’ve spent hours upon hours discussing with fellow Cowboys’ fans how the 1990’s Cowboys would have won four straight (at least) Super Bowls if only the two JJs (Jerry Jones & Jimmy Johnson) had been able to coexist a little bit longer. As it is, they won three in four years; the first franchise to ever do that. And yet, we spend our time lamenting the fact they didn’t win the championship game in January ’95 against San Francisco.
How sick is that?
But since we can’t change the past, what about the future?
Well, let’s look at that. The Cowboys have themselves a new coach in Wade Phillips. He seems to have brought a more relaxed atmosphere. The players are talking about how they’re having more fun. Phillips is implementing his defensive scheme that led the league in sacks and helped win 14 games for the San Diego Chargers last year.
DeMarcus Ware will terrorize opposing quarterbacks even more. Defensive ends Marcus Spears and Chris Canty will finally play up to their potential. Safety Roy Williams will be playing closer to the line of scrimmage and will not be exposed as a liability in coverage.
New Offensive Coordinator Jason Garrett is bringing a new and innovative offense for quarterback Tony Romo and company to play with. Terrell Owens’ finger appears to be fixed, and he’s showing up and shutting up. Running back Julius Jones is excited that he won’t be running like a “robot” anymore. He’s looking for a big payday as this is a contract year for him. And should he get hurt, hey, Marion Barber is ready to go. Tight end Jason Witten and wide receiver Terry Glenn will continue to be big time contributors.
New additions Leonard Davis, Ken Hamlin and first round draft choice Anthony Spencer look to shore up the problem areas from last year. So am I excited? Do I think the Cowboys can win a playoff game or three? Absolutely. And why not? It’s July! I’m just like every other fan.
In a way, this is the best time of year for football fans. For fans of the winners, aka the Indianapolis Colts, they get to enjoy their team being called the defending Super Bowl Champions. That certainly has a nice “ring” to it, pun intended. (And if you didn’t get it, you might be on the wrong web site.)
For the rest of the fans, you get to explain how your team re-loaded via free agency or the draft, or how the new coaching staff will turn things around, or how it will be different this year now that your impact player(s) will be back healthy this year.
Yes sir, we’re all winners in July.