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Thread: Archer: Cowboys leave Philadelphia healthy, ready for playoffs

  1. #1
    Amateur football god Iamtdg's Avatar
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    Archer: Cowboys leave Philadelphia healthy, ready for playoffs

    Cowboys leave Philadelphia healthy, ready for playoffs
    10:00 AM CT
    Todd Archer
    ESPN Staff Writer

    PHILADELPHIA -- Jason Garrett couldn’t say it during the week leading up to Sunday’s season finale against the Philadelphia Eagles, but he could after.

    “We had different objectives coming into the game,” Garrett said. “There were going to be certain guys who weren’t going to play this game because of injury. We held a couple guys out, a guy on each side of the ball. And then we had a plan for a few other guys about how much we wanted them to play.”

    Ezekiel Elliott never got the chance to go after Eric Dickerson’s rookie rushing record. Sean Lee, the team’s leading tackler, was active but did not see a snap. Neither did Ronald Leary, who did not practice during the week because of a back injury.

    “Sean’s been doing a helluva job all year long dealing with some different injuries,” Garrett said, alluding to a knee injury that has limited his work in practice the last three weeks. “Obviously he’s as productive a player as we have on our team, fought through some things a lot during the last couple of weeks. It just felt like it was the right thing to do with him, to keep him out. Obviously Zeke has gotten a tremendous workload over the course of the year, been a really important player for us. I thought this was a good opportunity to keep him out, freshen him up and also give some of the other guys an opportunity to play.”

    Dak Prescott played two series. Jason Witten and Dez Bryant played three series. In the second half, cornerbacks Orlando Scandrick and Brandon Carr and safety Barry Church were held out. Byron Jones saw action only in the sub packages in the second half.

    “Everybody wanted to play,” Garrett said. “Even the guys we took out at different parts of the game wanted to stay in, that’s the nature of them. They’re competitors, but they understood what the objectives were.”

    Tyron Smith (knee, back), Morris Claiborne (groin), Justin Durant (elbow), Tyrone Crawford (shoulder, hamstring), DeMarcus Lawrence (back), Cedric Thornton (ankle) and Terrell McClain (ankle) were inactive and did not even make the trip to Philadelphia.

    Garrett said they would all be available when the Cowboys play in the divisional round.

    And perhaps more importantly there were no injuries from those who did play Sunday.

    “It seemed like from the information I’ve gotten that we are doing OK on the injury front,” Garrett said.

    That is more important than a victory on the field.
    2016 DCC LOTY Fantasy Football Champion

  2. #2
    El Other Presidente' UncleMilti's Avatar
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    That's good news about getting those key players back for the playoffs. If Gregory somehow avoids another suspension the defense will be a handful for whoever we face.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by UncleMilti View Post
    That's good news about getting those key players back for the playoffs. If Gregory somehow avoids another suspension the defense will be a handful for whoever we face.
    Weird. Starting the year I was hoping our defense would be average. It feels like our rookie QB/RB combo has inspired everyone to play better.

  4. #4
    Senior Member jeebs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shoop View Post
    Weird. Starting the year I was hoping our defense would be average. It feels like our rookie QB/RB combo has inspired everyone to play better.
    I don't think it works like that.

  5. #5
    You don't think an offense playing well can inspire a defense to play better? Maybe not but I certainly didn't expect our defense to play this well

  6. #6
    Amateur football god Iamtdg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shoop View Post
    You don't think an offense playing well can inspire a defense to play better? Maybe not but I certainly didn't expect our defense to play this well
    I think the whole team working together makes the whole team better. Meaning the offense or offensive players getting pumped up and practicing hard can impact how the defense practices and play. So, in short, I agree with you.
    2016 DCC LOTY Fantasy Football Champion

  7. #7
    Senior Member townsend's Avatar
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    I think defensive back coaching change makes a big damn difference. I think Jerome Henderson fucking sucked. Greg Jackson and Joe Baker have taken over a DB group that's consistently underperformed. Claiborne, Carr had both stepped up their game, Brown is playing lights out, Jones is developing nicely, and Church, Heath, and and especially Wilcox look like different players.

    Add to that we cut out toxic personalities like Hardy and McClain, got a lot younger, have an offense that frequently forces teams to play from behind, and a healthy Sean Lee, and you finally have a defense that can live up to Marinelli's coordination.

  8. #8
    Senior Member chevycowboys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by townsend View Post
    I think defensive back coaching change makes a big damn difference. I think Jerome Henderson fucking sucked. Greg Jackson and Joe Baker have taken over a DB group that's consistently underperformed. Claiborne, Carr had both stepped up their game, Brown is playing lights out, Jones is developing nicely, and Church, Heath, and and especially Wilcox look like different players.

    Add to that we cut out toxic personalities like Hardy and McClain, got a lot younger, have an offense that frequently forces teams to play from behind, and a healthy Sean Lee, and you finally have a defense that can live up to Marinelli's coordination.
    Still in the draft they need 2 CB, Safety, and at least 1 huge DT, a Pass Rusher, and 1 LB. Then this defense will be a force. Oh and a replacement for Free. That motherfucker has to go!

  9. #9
    Senior Member ravidubey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shoop View Post
    Weird. Starting the year I was hoping our defense would be average. It feels like our rookie QB/RB combo has inspired everyone to play better.
    It's Marinelli +Sean Lee minus the locker room cancers we picked up the last couple of years.

    Our offense gives our defense the opportunity to play lights out, and the defense has come through. Got to hand it to Marinelli.

    But let's get serious. These are the playoffs. We are going to have to score to win now.

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