Rangers and Cowboys Face Challenges This Season

By Brian Chapman

Staff Writer

After going to the World Series in back-to-back years, the Texas Rangers players now find themselves at home watching the postseason from the couch.
On Friday night, Oct. 5, the team lost to the Baltimore Orioles in a one-game Wild Card playoff.
The Texas Rangers had the best record in baseball before the July 10-12 All-Star break at 49-25. After the All-Star break, the Rangers started to slump. Players were getting injured and inconsistency was shown throughout the bullpen and in the dugout.
The one player in particular who showed the most inconsistency was Josh Hamilton, the biggest name on the Rangers’ roster. Before the All-Star break, he had a batting average of .308, 75 runs batted in and 27 home runs. After the All-Star break, he accumulated a mere .259 batting average, 53 runs batted in and 16 home runs.
Of all the players on the Rangers’ roster who played a minimum of 30 games, excluding pitchers and players acquired during the season, only David Murphy, Michael Young and Mitch Moreland increased their batting averages after the All-Star break.
The team is looking to keep a lot of its key players for next year. Josh Hamilton and Mike Napoli are the two big names that are going to become free agents next year and could leave for bigger contracts.
During the offseason, the Dallas Cowboys team made some improvements to its defense, adding two cornerbacks: Brandon Carr from the Kansas City Chiefs, and drafting Morris Claiborne with the team’s first round draft pick. The Cowboys started the season on a marginal note and are now sitting at a record of two wins and three losses.
To get over this hump, it seems that Cowboys need to do a lot of work during this extended break. Dallas has the best pass defense in the league, holding opponents to an average of 169.5 yards per game going into week 5. The team’s turnovers have struggled with only one interception on the year. The Cowboys rush defense is 17th in the league, holding opponents to an average of 108 yards per game. That’s not too bad, considering the Cowboys were near the bottom in both categories last season.
There is also a lot of work to do with the offensive line. The offensive line has allowed nine sacks already this season. The Cowboys are also the 10th highest team in penalty yards per game with 62.
The real problem with this team, which seems to cause controversy throughout the city, is the issue with Tony Romo, starting quarterback for the Cowboys. He started out strong with a big win against the New York Giants, but has fallen off and finished week four with five interceptions against the Chicago Bears, and although performing statistically superior in Week 6’s bout with the Baltimore Ravens, couldn’t reel in the win.
As of Week 6, Romo has a 67.4 completion percentage, seven touchdowns, nine interceptions and a quarterback rating of 82.1. All these stats compiled make for a very average quarterback who has been referred to as “elite.”
Going into the 2012-2013 NFL season, the Cowboys seemed to be doomed from the start.
The Cowboys have one the toughest schedules in the NFL. With only a few additions to the defense and almost no additions to the offense, the Cowboys are set up to fail just like they did last year.