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October 02, 2012

Garrett says defense's body of work so far has been 'pretty good,' considering all the turnovers

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said the defense has been “pretty good” the first four games and that is has stepped up in the face of turnover after turnover.

“It’s not a good situation for them to be put into,” he said. “I think in general, they’ve handled that well throughout the season. There have been some different sudden-change opportunities that they’ve had that they’ve stepped up and held teams to field goals or forced them to drive a long distance and really make them work.

“But obviously they’re not in that situation when two of them get returned for touchdowns. They have no chance on those.”

The Cowboys have given up three touchdowns without the defense on the field – the blocked punt at Seattle, the second-quarter interception return Monday night by Charles Tillman and the third-quarter interception/fumble return by Lance Briggs.

The defense itself has given up seven touchdowns (two by rush, five by pass) and six field goals. With the defense on the field, the opponents have scored 17, 20, 10 and 20 points.

Through the first three weeks, the Cowboys were ranked No. 1 in yards allowed per game. This week, they are No. 4.

“I think for the most part the defense has played well,” Garrett said. “Chicago did a nice job both running it at times and also throwing it and making some plays in the passing game against us. But I think if you look at the first four games, the body of work has been pretty good.”

-- Carlos Mendez

Twitter @calexmendez

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