Doug Free has allowed a sack, and he has six penalties. It is not what he expects of himself or what the Cowboys expected when they signed Free to an extension that included $17 million in guarantees.
"It needs improvement, definitely," Free said of his play. "I haven't pass protected well enough. [We] haven't run the ball well enough, and [I] definitely contributed to [that with] what I've done. I don't think I've done a good enough job, and we've got to get it fixed. I have to fix it. I have to take coaching and keep working the techniques I've been taught and really focus on it."
The Cowboys have 12 false start penalties this season, including six at home. Their tackles have been responsible for nine of the 12. Left tackle Tyron Smith leads the NFL with five. Free has four, including three at Cowboys Stadium last week, which rank him second in the league in that category.
Free also has two holds, giving him six penalites. Smith has a horse collar penalty to go with his five false starts. The Cowboys' tackles lead the league in penalites.
"It's mainly on me and Ty," Free said of the false starts. "We’ve just got to focus more. I think the distance from the center could [explain] some of that, but I ain’t going to blame it on all that. Just a matter of we’ve got to focus better, really stay focused on what the count is and just have our stuff right and ready for the next game."
-- Charean Williams