Pre-season Game #1 at Dallas

Rambling, off-the-top-of-my-head thoughts during the game:

1) The D looked bad on the first drive, that is to say they looked exactly like last year’s team. In fairness though they were playing without several important cogs. About halfway through the first drive, Deshawn Zombie said, like it just occurred to him, “Bob Sanders isn’t playing. Of course they look bad.”

2) The offense looked as good as ever. I didn’t notice Anthony Gonzalez do anything, but I may have missed something because we were kind of in the middle of a huge family reunion (I was meeting my 11 month old nephew for the first time).

3) The D looked much better on the second drive, but they just couldn’t get off the field on third downs. Mostly second and third stringers, but they very much held their own. They are hitting, too.

4) Special teams look much improved, especially in coverage. TJ Rushing had a great kickoff return as well. We won’t miss Terrence Wilkins (although I think he had an amazing Super Bowl which almost went unnoticed).

5) Dallas is using Marion Barber like there is no tomorrow. Or like he’s Larry Johnson.

6) I’m not sure we have seen enough to say anything about DeDe Dorsey.

7) To tell you the truth I forgot to observe how Tony Ugoh was doing. No one died or was maimed as a result of his play so I give him an A+ at this point.

8) Gonzo starts the second half with a nice catch and run. Damn he’s quick.

9) Very lame touchdown by the Dallas defense on a Sorgi ball tipped at the line of scrimmage. Wade Phillips and Jerry Jones look absurdly thrilled given it’s the second half of a pre-season game. Weird moment.

10) GUUUUZMAN. I don’t know who you are, but you just jacked somebody up. The solid kick coverage continues.

11) 10 minutes to play in the third quarter and it is officially Scrub Time. I’m thinking we have learned as much as we are going to about any Colts players we were analyzing tonight.

12) Sorgi has not been in sync with his recievers in the second half. Overthrows abound. The Dallas offensive scrubs, on the other hand, seem to be having no trouble completing pass after pass. In other words, the Dallas guys who are going to get cut next week are better than the Colts guys who are going to get cut next week.

13) I got a laugh out of the shot of a Cowboys fan with the sign reading Tony is my Homie. That sign is great and all, but doesn’t it invite some crude individual to create a rival sign reading Romo is a Homo?

14) Indy gets on the board again very late with a nice touchdown drive led by the very mobile Josh Betts.

15) I would say the back-up running back spot is still up for grabs at this point. I would expect Joe Addai to be shelved for most of the remainder of the pre-season in favor of figuring out which of the other backs can perform against a first-string defense.

16) Interesting comment by Tony Dungy. He said that Edgerrin James had the highest football IQ of any player he’s ever been around. . . and somewhere tonight Peyton Manning is weeping softly.

17) The Cowboys earned this victory. Really special stuff. I think tonight totally made up for that botched snap last January.

Deshawn Zombie’s Comments: Thanks for the welcome back. I’ll admit that my ability to focus on the game was compromised by all the joy of seeing friends and family and dealing with kids who just traveled for about 20 hours. That being said, from what I saw, Demond has it right. I thought Josh Betts looked great, although the INT he threw was awful. I can see why they cut Navarre. I think this kid might be worth keeping around as the third stringer. I think he’s a better long term backup than Sorgi, although I wouldn’t want to make that switch this year.