His is not an impossible situation, certainly not an easy one.
Hired in the offseason to be the team's offensive line coach, Callahan inherited talent (Tyron Smith) and then a series of large question marks. Thus far, the answers aren't pretty.
* The Cowboys running game ranks 29th in the NFL, averaging 3.4 yards per carry (generally, that's not very good).
"It changes so rapidly; you get on a roll and start running and you quiet the critics," he said today when I asked him if there is a correlation between the quality of the line and the team's yards per carry average. "Look at the Bears game, you don't get those attempts to get into a rhythm. I'm not using that as an excuse. Look at the Seattle game and the Chicago game and you don't get into the run rhythm like we did against the Giants."
* The offense averages 16.2 points per game, 30th in the NFL (rule of thumb says that sucks).
Both statistics suggest the line stinks. Buuuut ... according to the "offensive line statistics" as measured by NFL.com, it tells a different story.
* The line ranks 8th in the NFL based on combined starts from the two guards, two tackles and center; rushing first downs; rushes for negative yards; rushes for 10 + yards; rushing power; a few other measurables as well.
* Tony Romo has been hit 14 times, third-fewest in the NFL. He has been sacked 8 times, which is 27th.
Where the Cowboys offensive line seems to be flopping is the eye-ball test. Tony Romo looks like he is under pressure, and DeMarco Murray looks as if he has had no where to run the last three games.
"There is no question the ability is there. We believe in our players," Callahan said. "It does become a matter of consistency."
That seems to be a recurring theme with this team.
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