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5 Questions With Blogging The Boys

I'm asking the questions here!


I had the opportunity to ask five questions of David Halprin of Blogging the Boys, my long-time mentor andone of SBN's finest. Let's get right down to brass tacks.

Tony Romo

Dave Choate: Tony Romo has been unfairly maligned in the past, but this year he's having a bit of a train wreck season. What's going on there, and will he be able to get back on track in 2012?

David Halprin: It has been a bit of a train-wreck for Romo, but it's not all on him. He's definitely made his share of bad plays this year, some interceptions that were truly his fault. But his receiving corps hasn't helped out at all. They've run wrong routes, dropped passes, and tipped others up in the air for picks. There have been a combination of things going wrong this year and Romo is caught up in it. There's every possibility he could straighten it out for the stretch run of the season, but it's impossible to know. The Cowboys offense is totally unpredictable right now.

The Ground Game

Dave Choate: How dangerous is your ground game without DeMarco Murray? The Falcons have a below average run defense, and that's an area of concern for Falcons fans.

David Halprin: I would say not much of a danger without Murray. When the Cowboys rolled the Ravens defense for big yards on the ground, a lot of guys got in on the act. But last week against the Giants was a dud, and the game before wasn't much better. Murray is the game-changer from the backfield for Dallas, without him the Cowboys have no confidence in their run game. I'm sure they'll give it a go to start the game, but if nothing is happening they'll give up on it fast and go with the passing game.

The Pass Rush

Dave Choate: Tell us a little bit about how the pass rush will attack the Falcons' offensive line. The line has been mostly good but has had a couple of poor games this season, and DeMarcus Ware scares me.

David Halprin: While DeMarcus Ware is certainly the focal point, having Jay Ratliff back from injury is huge. He was a terror last week against the Giants, disrupting plays in both the passing and running game. So his return should help Dallas generate a more balanced rush, from the inside as well as the outside. Anthony Spencer and Jason Hatcher are capable of creating pressure, but they aren't as consistent at it as Cowboys fans would want. Ware and Ratliff are definitely the guys who will do most of the damage.

The Passing Game

Dave Choate: If you're the Cowboys, how do you attack the Falcons through the air? Do you trust Dez Bryant's athleticism against Asante Samuel, or do you try to make the most of Jason Witten not being covered by Sean Weatherspoon?

David Halprin: If I'm Dallas, I'm making a living with Jason Witten and Miles Austin. Dez Bryant and Kevin Ogletree have been in the middle of a lot of the screw-ups mentioned in the first question. With Weatherspoon out, I expect Dallas to ride Witten all day and mix in Austin. When Dallas goes three-wide at receiver Austin moves inside to the slot and is a potent force from there. Bryant will still get looks, but Witten and Austin should be the ones seeing most of the action.

The Score

Dave Choate: A prediction for the game and a score, if you please.

David Halprin: I got to stick with my guys, Dallas 27 - Atlanta 24.