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Thursday, December 24, 1998
Are Cowboys paper tigers?
By DENNE H. FREEMAN
AP Sports Writer
IRVING, Texas (AP) The common perception is once the
NFC playoffs begin the Dallas Cowboys will be sent packing in
Although they were the best team in a bad NFC East division,
Dallas showed less than Super Bowl caliber play and just eked
past lowly Philadelphia 13-9 last Sunday to break a three-game
Seven of the Cowboys nine wins have come against NFC
East foes. Carolina and Seattle were the only other Dallas victims.
Dallas has lost to Minnesota, Denver, New Orleans, Chicago, Kansas
City and Oakland.
Cornerback Kevin Smith, who has three Super Bowl rings, said
the Cowboys are still capable of making a run to Miami, but they
have to play well in the season finale against Washington on
Sunday night in Texas Stadium.
Smith will start at right cornerback for the second week in
place of Deion Sanders, whose big left toe is still sore.
I think we have just as much a chance as anyone else,
Smith said. Whats important now is that we play good
against the Redskins. If we can go 10-6 it would be a complete
reverse of the 6-10 that we had last year.
No team has ever swept the NFC East in a season. That is one
incentive Dallas has going into Sundays game. The game
will have no bearing on the Cowboys playoff position, which
calls for them to host a wild-card team in Texas Stadium on either
Jan. 2 or Jan. 3.
If we play like we did against Philadelphia I dont
see how we can go very far in the playoffs, safety Darren
Woodson said. Were not playing that great so resting
guys against Washington probably wont happen. We need to
get on a roll going into the playoffs.
Fullback Daryl Johnston said he is proud of what the Cowboys
accomplished after what they went through last season.
This is big for us to win the division, Johnston
said. There is still a lot of pride on this team. There
are still some guys here who have been to three Super Bowls and
The Cowboys know they have to kick up their play a notch,
particularly on offense.
If we keep playing like were playing offense are
we going to win another world championship? quarterback
Troy Aikman said. Its highly unlikely unless our
defense keeps holding people the way they have been.
Running back Emmitt Smith said no matter what happens coach
Chan Gailey deserves kudos for turning the team around.
Chan deserves a lot of credit, Smith said. He
has done just a tremendous job. He is a great leader. He has
turned the ballclub around.
All content copyright 1998,
AP, KRT, The Abilene Reporter-News
and Reporter OnLine
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