Theme Music. Every good super hero should have some.
And like every good super hero, every good NFL storyline gets some theme music too. In lieu of NFL Films getting an early jump on a “Season to Remember” documentary for the 2015 Cowboys, CHQ felt it would be a good idea to assign theme music to the early journey of several members of this year’s team. The music is unapologetically NSFW (not safe for work, or young children)… and represents my impression of the situation each player (or group of players) find themselves in. Press play.
DE Randy Gregory
"What! The kids better buy my rookie card now, Cause after this year the price ain't comin' down. And if you got a joint bubblin' then get money now, Cause in a minute, there's gonna be some real trouble comin' out. Just a warnin', as usual some cats wont heed it. The hard headed always gotta feel it to believe it. It's a shame the jealous gaze is too short to see it, But when they face hit the cement, they nod in agreement" - Oh No, Nate Dogg feat Mos Def and Pharoah Monch (2000)
Gregory has a unique opportunity to prove he is worth more than what was bargained for. He went from regarded as possibly the best pass rusher in the draft to a late second-rounder thanks to his marijuana test. He fell into a perfect situation as Dallas tries to resurrect their pass rush that has been missing recently; able to get rush opportunities without having to be an every down player. If he can amass 5 sacks on the year (rookies rarely get sacks, expectations should be tempered) he’ll be well on his way to making that rookie card value skyrocket. From all reports, Gregory ain’t scared to hustle.. and if that translates to pressures, it will be opposing quarterbacks screaming out, “Oh No!”
QB Tony Romo & WR Dez Bryant
"I got the drink in me going back-to-back
Yeah, goin’ back-to-back
Not even when she tell him that they better as friendsNot even when you sayin’ “Drizzy tell’em againI been puttin’ on a show, it was a sellout eventOh, you need better seatin’I didn’t want to do it, gave me every reasonThe point I’m trying to make is I don’t ever need’em”" - Back-To-Back, Drake (2015)
Let’s suspend everything we feel about the fact that Drake’s sing-songy career has launched him to the top of Hip Hop’s totem pole for now.. take this abstract. Folks have been coming at Tony Romo and Dez Bryant for years, and in 2014 they finally broke through and proved to be the most dynamic duo in the league. Standing back-to-back like the cover of Lethal Weapon, this QB-WR combo is set to merk lesser adversaries and haters the same way Drake has dispatched Meek Mill’s attempt to discredit his worth in the game. The Cowboys offense is indeed a sellout event and, with Bryant’s new deal, should remain top billing for the next several seasons. If you don’t think so, you’re seats probably aren’t the best and you have a distorted view on reality. So while Chip Kelly is busy breaking up with players and pretending they're still friends, Romo and Bryant are set to embark on more record-setting jaunts through the NFC East… and claim the division title Back-to-Back.
DB Byron Jones
"Hope you heard that introThis that ‘I been grindin’ cause I’ve been saving for that Benz’ flowTo mash on a**holes with petty badgesTell’em n***as we throwed, but they never gon’ catch us.If I get pulled over, I know they gon be on itCause it’s hot in here and I got no L like the 7-2 DolphinsWhoooo, race my n***aAnd I bet you’ll never pass me like a free safety, n***a” - 600 Benz, Wale (2011)
Dallas’ first round pick was highly lauded by Cowboys draftniks everywhere, including the crew of the Cowboys Crunchtime podcast (listen here as we waxed poetic for over 30 minutes how Jones would be a perfect fit for Dallas.). His blend of supreme intelligence and other-worldy athletic ability will serve him well in the league. Dallas has yet to lock Jones down to one position, but even through a short time in camp, he’s shown great position flex and the ability to play on the outside, in the slot, or yes… even as the single-high free safety. Learning curves are always steep for rookie DBs, but Jones is ready to mash on any receivers with designs to reach the end zone.
Cowboys Offensive Line
"They say a family that plays together, stays together. And one that walks apart just falls apart. So, together we stand, divided we fall. United, we form Voltron and take on all. Let’s move. Yes, the birds left the nest. I’m all grown up I gotta fly with the rest. Best of the best is what we strive to be. Yeah. A legacy is what we trying to leave.Ya dig? Now say goodbye to the past. The future is here at last. The second coming. The new beginning. The truth is speaking. You should listen. So glorious. Victorious. We take what we want we born warriors.” - Juelz Santana, Second Coming (2008)
Much has been made about the fact that the 2015 Offensive line unit rolls everywhere together. Not just the starting five, the entire group of 15 that’s in training camp. They ascended to the throne as the league’s top line last year, but still had work to do on their pass protection. This year, with an additional first-round talent in La’El Collins, they will try and build a legacy to rival the original Great Wall of Dallas. With the zone-blocking scheme Dallas employs, they really do resemble Voltron, five kings-of-the-jungle working in unison to defeat all evil-doers. They’ll take what they want, and that includes the lunches of defensive linemen across the league.
RB Joseph Randle
"Everybody looking at you crazy (Crazy) What you gone do? (What you gone do?) Lift up your head and keep moving (Keep moving) Or let the paranoia haunt you? (Haunt you) Peace to fashion police, I wear my heart On my sleeve let the runway start You know the miserable do love company What do you want from me and my scars? Everybody lack confidence, everybody lack confidence How many times our potential was anonymous? How many times the city making me promises? So I promise this..And I love myself” -Kendrick Lamar, I (2014)
That’s the reaction of every non-Cowboys fan when one tries to explain why it’s so likely for Joseph Randle to have success, “out of nowhere”, in 2015. Everybody looking at you crazy. Randle had a couple hiccups with a dropped domestic violence investigation and a plea deal for shoplifting and is now set to be the Cowboys lead back behind the monstrous offensive line effort described earlier. To many, his potential is anonymous, but to those that have watched him closely, including Dallas’ brass that rated him the same level as Demarco Murray coming out of the draft it’s limitless. Randle has improved on each of his physical limitations he was marked with coming out, getting bigger, faster and stronger every year. Unlike Murray, he makes sure to “lift his head up” to see holes and attack them, instead of running into his own linemen. The miserable love company, so Randle just has to keep adding defenses to wake as he careens down the runway the OL paves for him.
DE Greg Hardy
"Eventually, I knew that I would find my way, After the darkest night, always comes a brighter day, And some would say, that turned away is all you'll get, I just said, "bet," and never let 'em see me sweat. Cause in the end, I knew that I would have it all, while non-believers, were prayin for my downfall. And some would call, and tell me that they wish me well, but in my heart, I'm knowin that they wish me hell” -Strictly For My, 2Pac (1993)
First things first, no one is condoning domestic violence and rooting for a player on your favorite team does not constitute supporting illegal or immoral actions. With that out the way, Hardy is set to become the pass rushing terror that Dallas has so badly needed. There are many who doubt him, but the skills cannot be denied. Through it all, he’s remained (publicly) upbeat and full of candor, and is apparently a workaholic that is showing the way for the Cowboys Rushmen. Hardy of course knows that there is a large contingent of NFL fans that wish him hell. The only thing he can do from this point forward is to unleash that fury on opposing quarterbacks.