TAMPA - Had it not been for another Eli Manning fourth quarter comeback, we would be talking about a 2-0 Tampa Bay Buccaneers team.
However, 510 yards later, Manning's arm and no pass rush turned a halftime lead into a seven point loss.
When you score 34 points, the odds are greatly in your favor. When you turn three Giants turnovers into 21 points, the odds are greatly in your favor.
Perhaps the new defensive scheme of the Bucs is a bit ambitious. Perhaps they might want to reassess their single press coverage by their cornerbacks until the defensive line can lay a QB on his keester.
In the past two weeks, the Bucs have allowed Cam Newton to throw for 301 yards in a TB win, and 510 by Manning in a loss.
That's over 800 yards folks.
Alarming to say the least. As Head Coach Greg Schiano said yesterday, why would anyone not throw again them.
Cue Tony Romo.
The Dallas QB will the be the third consecutive top-flight flame thrower in as many weeks.
If Dallas's offensive scheme isn't to throw the ball 75-80% of the time, they're nuts.
I know the Bucs are anticipating it.
What they don't have right now is the personnel to fit the defensive scheme.
To go a step further, who does?
Dallas will be looking for their fifth consecutive win over the Pewter and Red.
A seven-point favorite and may be the early front runner as the Sybil of the NFL.
An opening week win on the road against the Giants, yet they head to Seattle in week 2 and get hammer by the Seahawks.
Cowboys fumbled four times, limited to 49 yards rushing after dropping 143 against NY.
I really don't see Dallas having all that much success against the Bucs on the ground this week.
If there is a gold star to pin on the D-line, it's their run defense.
Maybe the Cowboys are banking on their past history, having no trouble trampling down the field on this series. The 'Boys have averaged over 120 yds.per game.
KEY FACT: Dallas has lost 18 of it's last 22 games when rushing for under 100 yards.
Can't ignore it. It's a definite trend.
KEY FACT: Tony Romo historically has averaged over 300 yards passing with 11 TD's and no interceptions.
KEY FACT: The Dallas defense has allowed only 160 yards passing this season, third in the NFL.
So, it appears that the key to beating Dallas is running the ball.
Does the rookie RB Doug Martin have what it takes?
Will Demar Dotson replacing Jeremy Trueblood make that much of a difference on the right side of the offensive line?
This Trueblood thing is weird. It's almost as if the Bucs coaching staff couldn't wait to find an excuse to put Dotson in there.
Trueblood goes down with an injury, Dotson plays okay, bingo. Lineup change.
Couple that with the "take a million less this season or we are going to waive you" approach was the double warm.
With Trueblood's main ally, Davin Joseph, going down for the season, that did help either.
In any case, Dotson better be ready to hold his own because he and the rest of that offensive line will have to protect Josh Freeman in the pocket.
The Bucs can't win this game on the ground alone.
Vincent Jackson must be a factor. I look for Dallas Clark to be a factor.
Most of all, special teams will be a factor.
The Bucs will need to play the field position game in this one. Good punts. Good coverage.
If Dallas gets the short field, they'll score.
The line on this one is Dallas -7.
Hasn't moved a bit.
To lay it right out there, I'm having to make a choice between a schizo team and one that can't defend the pass.
The fact that Dallas is home and historically has throttled the Bucs by over 18 points a game should be a red flag.
Then again, the Bucs made amends on Carolina for last season.
I have to believe they want to do the same this week.
With some trepidation, I'm taking the Cowboys minus the seven.
Those 811 yards is beating me upside the head. Can't get it out of my mind.
TK's pick Dallas -7
TK vs. Spread 1-1
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