Now we aren't looking too far ahead here but I'm talking about he initial two weeks.
The Cowboys will open up at Cleveland of the AFC Central. The Browns made some strides last year, missing the playoffs despite tying divisional winner Pittsburgh for the same record. The Browns were awful in losing big to the Steelers in their opener at home. But after that they scraped themselves up off the deck to win a shootout over Cincinati(the Bengals' season of high expectations took a turn for the worse after that game) and proceeded to play real well with Andersen at QB with their top pick, QB BRady Quinn, suprisingly not get out there when everyone expected him to win the job by midseason. The Browns then were at Pittsburgh around midseason and ahead throughout before being nipped at the end. They would finish at 10-6 and lose out to the Steelers on a tiebreaker. There were simply too many good teams in the AFC. And the Browns look to take a step further this season. Question is can they avoid listening to all of those talks about high expectations? Sounds like the Cowboys, albeit they have loftier expectations. This match could be a shootout and in this type of a game, that would probably favor the Cowboys. But on the other hand, the only way that the Browns have a CHANCE for an upset is for it to be a shootout, a shootout that they probably don't win. The Browns I think could make this interesting nonetheless. Bottom line: The Cowboys have to win if they're a Super Bowl team. Period. The Browns come in at least based on last year, a solid team but not a Super Bowl team. Remember the 2006 opener? They lost at Jacksonville(a solid team but not Super Bowl contending team) and I believe it set the tone for the underachieving year in Big D. That game right there was the beginning of ROMO talks. The loss at Philly in the fourth game to fall to 2-2 that year, was the beginning of the end for Drew Bledsoe. No there isn't anyone looking over Romo's shoulder for sure. That's a non-issue. It's just that if the Cowboys were to lose the opener at Cleveland, then here comes Philly to Dallas the following Monday night. The Eagles are a mediorcre team and have been. Go back to Super Bowl 39 in Feb. 2005. Since that narrow loss to the Patriots, Philly is 25-25 including the two playoff games of 2006 with McNabb sidelined and Jeff Garcia at the helm. But somehow the Cowboys and Eagles have split the six meetings since then. On Paper, Dallas should win that game too especially at home. IF they're a Super Bowl team, absolutely. But the Eagles, despite not having the swagger from the first half of this decade, are still a division rival and will go in believing that they can pull off an upset, when they have no business doing so ON PAPER. McNabb is not what he formerly was, slowed by injuries over the past few years and not with anywhere near the supporting cast he once had. SO just starting with the two games to open up the season, if they are a SUPER BOWL team, Dallas should win them both. But not to look too far ahead, I'm starting with the first two.