Rob Ryan isn't here anymore because his defense allowed a team-record 5,687 yards last season and produced only 16 takeaways. Monte Kiffin is here to fix the problem.
But the 2013 Cowboys defense is on pace to allow 6,116 total yards, and after forcing six takeways in the season opener against the Giants, including one on special teams, the Cowboys have only two takeways the past three games.
Though owner Jerry Jones said it is different than last year, it looks a lot the same.
Only once last season did the Cowboys allow more yards than they did Sunday in giving up 506 to the Chargers, and that was an overtime game against the Saints on Dec. 23 when Drew Brees threw for 446 of the Saints’ 562 total yards.
“Those days, I wish they were behind us,” Cowboys cornerback Brandon Carr said. “You sure would hope so. That’s why you put in all the work. You want to get better each week you come out on the field. Today was a big letdown.”
The Cowboys will have to turn it around in a hurry with Peyton Manning and the Broncos next up on the schedule.“We’ve got to bounce back, man,” Cowboys defensive tackle Jason Hatcher said. “We’ve got hands down the best quarterback in the league coming in here [in Manning next week]. This guy right here, he’s a scientist out there. We’ve got to shake this one off quick. If not, we’re going to go out there and get embarrassed.”
-- Charean Williams