IRVING, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys are last in the league in yards allowed. They have allowed four quarterbacks to pass for at least 400 yards. They have allowed two teams to rush for more than 200 yards.
But defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin believes hope is always around the corner.
“There’s no [such] thing as magic,” Kiffin said. “We’ve just got to do a better job. We’ve all got to do a better job.”
Kiffin believes the bye week will help the Cowboys, and not just because of the return of players such as DeMarcus Ware, Jason Hatcher, Morris Claiborne and J.J. Wilcox. He believes the bye week helped the coaches.
“Sometimes you go so fast from Sunday to Sunday, Sunday to Sunday and here comes Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and this and that, now we can sit back,” Kiffin said. “We had a good walk-through on the field with our staff and everybody. Then we got the guys back and re-evaluated some stuff, work your cut-ups in how we attack and what they’re doing.”
This week's opponent, the New York Giants, put up 478 yards on Kiffin’s defense in the season opener. Eli Manning threw for 450 yards and four touchdowns (and was intercepted three times). The Giants converted on 6 of 11 third downs.
The Cowboys' defense has had to sit on an embarrassing effort against the New Orleans Saints: a franchise-record 625 yards allowed, an NFL-record 40 first downs surrendered, and 49 points.
“It definitely motivates you to play a good game, no doubt,” Kiffin said. “Bad games aren’t a lot of fun, I’ll tell you that right now.”