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Old 07-27-2002, 11:26 PM   #1
bama4256
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Question Dallas Must Be a Winner in 2002 for Dave Campo's Sake

Any coach who enters his 14th year with the same franchise must be good, or have a loyal owner, or plenty of political savvy. Head coach Dave Campo must be guilty on all three counts.

He started as a defensive assistant in 1989 with Dallas. He has outlived Jimmy Johnson, Barry Switzer and Chan Gailey. Thatís saying a lot. But is his luck about to run out? He enjoys a fantastic relationship with owner Jerry Jones.

Campo is in his third season as head coach. He went 5-11 in 2000 and 5-11 in 2001. 2000 was quarterback Troy Aikmanís last season. He had been banged around as if he were in a pinball machine. In 2001 Campo had to deal with a payroll of $23.4 million that was due to players that were no longer there. He also had to deal with four different starting quarterbacks. What a headache. Two is bad enough. It was Campoís job to maintain a positive attitude and determine which players would contribute in the future.

Owner Jerry Jones is expecting a winning team in 2002. Nothing less will satisfy him. I donít mean the team must go to the playoffs or the Super Bowl, but post at least a 9-7 record or better. I think itís safe to say that would allow Campo to keep his job.

I believe Dallas does have what it takes to be a winner in 2002. The question that looms the largest is, will quarterback Quincy Carter be ready to lead Dallas back to respectability or better. Owner Jerry Jones hired ex-Bengal coach Bruce Coslet to run the offense and get Carter going.

You must realize something. Dallas is considered by many to be the New York Yankees of football. Losing records are not tolerated very long by the owner or the fans. Just go to one of their home games and find out.

So itís going to be Carter or Chad Hutchinson(6-5-230) to lead this team in 2002. Hutchinson is a rookie from the University of Stanford. He started for Stanford back in 1996 and 1997. He then pursued a baseball career with the St. Louis Cardinals as a pitcher. Well, things didnít quite work out in his favor so he opted to play pro football. Some have compared him to Troy Aikman. Especially his physical stature.

Carter struggled with some injuries last season, but he also looked like the franchise quarterback Dallas expected. He had thumb and hamstring problems. He looked good against the Giants and the 49ers. He threw for 241 yards and two touchdowns against S.F. in week 16. He ended the season with 1,072 yards and five passing touchdowns.

Running back Emmitt Smith is someone you can always depend on. Yes heís aging quickly, but he has rushed for a 1,000 or more yards for 11 consecutive seasons. He is 33 years old and the odds are that he wonít be able to keep that pace up for very much longer. Smith is second on the all-time rushing list, only to ex-Bear Walter Payton. All Smith needs is 640 yards to break the all-time record of 16,726 held by the late Walter Payton.

Soon the Cowboys must look toward the future and draft a good young running back. They will probably do that in the 2003 NFL Draft. Troy Hambrick, a 240 pounder has played some halfback and fullback, but heís not their running back for the future. I may be wrong about that. He may be capable of rushing for a 1,000 yards or more in a season. Heís just 26 years old. He rushed for 579 yards in 2001.

Another area the Cowboys must improve is their receiving corp. Wide receiver Joey Galloway has been a disappointment since coming to Dallas in 2000. Heís been injured a lot and just hasnít played up to his potential. If Galloway can catch 90 to 100 passes, that would be great. His best season was in 1997 with the Seattle Seahawks. He caught 72 passes that year for 1,049 yards and 12 touchdowns. Raghib Ismail also had a disappointing year catching only 53 passes for 834 yards.

One thing the Cowboys can get excited about is wide receiver Antonio Bryant, who they drafted from the University of Pittsburgh. The Cowboys feel he could be another Michael Irwin, minus the outside distractions. He may get a lot of playing time soon. Cowboys signed ex-Bengal Tony McGee for their tight end.

The Cowboys offensive line is considered to be in good shape. To ensure it stays that way they drafted offensive lineman Andre Gurode out of Colorado and Tyson Walter out of Ohio State. Soloman Page(6-4-321) is on his way to be a very good tackle. Larry Allen(6-3-326) is great at the guard position.

As for the Cowboys defense, they made some significant improvements in their run defense and they were very good against the pass. But the defense only had 24 sacks and nine interceptions. They played back to avoid giving up the big play. Dallas will be much better since acquiring defensive tackle and ex-Saint LaíRoi Glover and linebacker Kevin Hardy from Jacksonville. Brandon Noble will play opposite of Glover. Heís a decent tackle.

The Cowboys are very proud of their first round draft pick. Safety Roy Williams from the University of Texas and they should be.

Linebacker Dat Nguyen led the team in tackles last season with 172. But Dexter Coakley is considered their best linebacker. He had 134 tackles. He covers a lot of ground.

Mario Edwards is developing well as a cornerback. Rookie Derek Ross out of Ohio State may be able to show what heís capable of real soon. And of course, you have the veteran Darren Woodson. He led the team with three interceptions in 2001.

Tim Seder the field goal kicker was 11 of 17 in field goals and 12 of 12 in extra points. Jon Hilbert was 11 of 16 in field goals.

In closing I see Dallas being a vastly improved team, especially on defense. If QB Quincy Carter can get the passing game going that will be a big big plus. Galloway must stay injury free and get open often. Cowboys could use another 1,000 yard season from Smith. I wish Smith all the luck on his quest to break the all-time rushing record. I see Dallas going 9-7 this season. I could be wrong. They may even win their division if everything clicks together. Of course, Washington and Philadelphia will have something to say about that. That is for sure. Dallas opens their season Sept. 8th against the new franchise, the Houston Texans. I hope a great rivalry develops there. See you at the game.
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Old 07-27-2002, 11:29 PM   #2
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The Cowboys are weakest at the two key points -- RB with the aging Smith and QB with the unproven and shaky Carter (IMO). But their defense is solid and young. I think Jerry Jones will fire Campo unless they improve by at least two games off last year. Jones won't be able to stand a mediocre franchise much longer.
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Old 07-28-2002, 12:09 AM   #3
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smith is an old fart who is just playing so he can break the record even though walter payton is still better than him. anyway quincy carter is nothing special and i dont think he's gonna be any better this year. there D is rock solid though and the addition of roy williams will make them a top contendor for the NFC East or whaterver division there in.
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Old 07-28-2002, 12:04 PM   #4
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Dallas also picked up Bryant Westbrook to bulster up their secondary as well. Greg Ellis is a very good defensive end and should cause havoc having Glover on the inside, and he will draw some attention.

Troy Hambrick is not really all that bad. Now I am not saying he is the savior of this offense, but I think he can be be productive if Dallas can get balance out of their passing game. Smith will start, but Hambrick will spell Smith often during the game.

I can't wait to see the Washington vs. Dallas series this season... Spurrier has already been running his mouth on this one... and I love it! Both of their games this season should be a dog fight and more than likely a defensive struggle. Mark this down...If Campo loses to Washington 2 times and has a losing record he is gone!

But their record may improve, but I am not sold on the fact that they can have a winning record till I see it.

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Old 08-02-2002, 01:49 PM   #5
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I don't think its Dave Campo fault that the cowboys were stuck in salary cap trouble right from the beginning of his tenure. Dave Campo needs a few more years to prove himself and get out of this salary cap mayhem. However, it doesn't really matter what the cowboys and redskins are going to do this year because it wont be good enough to beat my Eagles. Both teams have no quarterbacks, the most important position in football.
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Old 08-02-2002, 04:59 PM   #6
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Welcome, magman1621! :wavey: Eagles are a good team and glad to see we have a true fan here for them.
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Old 08-03-2002, 03:05 AM   #7
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Actually there's a good reason to question just how talented the Cowboys are on defense. Sure, their stats from last year look pretty impressive on paper, but remember that because their offense has so many problems, most opponents play "not to lose" against them offensively, instead of playing aggressively, to win. If a team feels they can beat you by scoring 17 or 20 points, they are going to be far more conservative in their approach on offense than if they believe they need, say, 30 points to win the game. Very often weak offensive teams show good numbers on defense, but it can be misleading.

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Old 08-05-2002, 03:41 AM   #8
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there's no way Dallas can be better that 8-8 unless Carter has a fantastic season and Emmit stays healthy, neither of which i think will happen.
Also I think the NFC East will be tougher this year than last.
it will interesting to see.
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Old 08-05-2002, 01:37 PM   #9
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crammy, Emmitt Smith is one of the most durable players in the league -- I think he can stay healthy if his O-line is solid. And I'm still not sold on Carter.
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Old 08-05-2002, 04:05 PM   #10
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Troy Hambrick is capable of gaining 1,000 yards or more. He's good.
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Old 08-06-2002, 12:16 AM   #11
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Troy Hambrick may be capable of gaining 1,000 but will he have the # of carries he needs to have to gain that much?? Probably not considering Emmitt Smith is Chasing Walter Payton's record.
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Old 08-06-2002, 03:43 PM   #12
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haven't paid much attention to the off-season development of Dallas' O-line , will they be good this year??
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Old 08-07-2002, 12:51 AM   #13
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They have Larry Allen and he is great of course and Flozell Adams is a good young tackle, but was injured the other day and will be out a few weeks. They drafted a great guard from the University of Colorado in Andre Gurode, and well they do have a decent offensive line I think....not great or anything like what they used to have at all, but I think this group has a chance to be good after molding together.

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