Bradie James: Criticism affects Cowboys

IRVING, Texas -- A team captain provided the latest evidence that the Cowboys might be the most mentally fragile team in the NFL.

“Guys have gotten into a rut, to be honest with you,” linebacker Bradie James said. “It’s a lot of negativity and a lot of criticism and people don’t respond too well to criticism, no way, shape, form or fashion about it.

“But the way you play, criticism sometimes is warranted, and that’s what we have to understand.”

James wasn’t complaining, just stating a fact. There are players in that locker room who are so sensitive that they allow criticism from the media to affect their performance. If that doesn’t change, they are doomed to fail as professional athletes, especially with a team that has this high of a profile.

Maybe the Cowboys wouldn’t be so sensitive to criticism if they actually heard it once in a while from their head coach. But Wade Phillips prefers to pat his players on the back and tell them not to listen to those bullies with notebooks and cameras.

Of course, handling criticism isn’t the Cowboys’ only problem pertaining to the media. They also get their heads pumped up way too easily, causing them to feel like all they have to do is show up to win. Mike Jenkins admitted as much after the Cowboys’ 0-2 start.

Does anybody believe a team so easily influenced by outside sources has any change to dig out of a 1-5 hole?