This first half didn't go the way we thought it would. For the first 29 minutes, there were zero offensive points scored. From then on, however, we, as fans, got ours. This was a phenomenal game to view as an unbiased football fan. Kurt Warner put the turnover woes away, Steve Breaston, Larry Fitzgerald, and Marion Barber racked up the receiving stats, and Tony Romo piled up the numbers.
When the dust settled, however, we were left with an unfamiliar feeling. The Arizona Cardinals, through six weeks, are a damn good football team. Say what you will about any of the external variables. There's going to be whining about the officiating (which I'll cover Wednesday), name-calling directed at Romo vis a vis his "clutch" play, and finger-pointing at the Cowboys' special teams.
It's only natural to blame special teams when you miss a field goal, allow a KOR runback, and lose the game on a blocked punt in OT to blame the special teams. And they should primarily do so. Those mistakes are unacceptable if you want to be an elite team. The Cowboys have sky-high expectations, and when you neglect one very important aspect of your team like this, blame is going to be laid.
Another layer to the onion that is the Cowboys ... Terrell Owens, the esteemed selfish mental-midget, is going to be whining all week about the game-plan and/or his lack of touches. He's about to divide your team, Cowboys fans. Whether you love him or hate him, you have to admit, he's alienated two great guys in Jeff Garcia and Donovan McNabb before skipping town and finding someone else stupid enough to pay him. He's going to do the same to another good guy, Tony Romo, if the 'Boys aren't careful.
The real story here, however, is that the Arizona Cardinals wanted this game. They needed it. Ken Whisenhunt even escaped a mistake which is usually karmically punished. He pulled the old wait until the last second before the snap and take a timeout to ice the kicker move. Only we had the luxury of seeing his team block the field goal as the line judge was screaming in, furiously blowing his whistle and waving his arms.
To survive that and still win the game ... wow. The worm, Arizona Cardinals fans, may be turning. You've suffered for a while. Now you have a two game lead, and you just beat one of the most talented teams in the league.
As I said earlier in the week, you deserve this. Enjoy your team and their victory.