Cowboys - Lions Report Card

As the Dallas Cowboys made quick work of another opponent on Sunday, it was clearly obvious that Quincy Carter was in position to have one of his best games ever.

PASSING OFFENSE: A -- It may have been Quincy Carter's finest game. He started off completing 11 of his first 12 passes before finishing 18 of 25 for 190 yards and a career-high three touchdown passes. His quarterback rating of 133.3 was also a career high. Terry Glenn had a career-high three touchdown receptions.

RUSHING OFFENSE: B -- This ground-game by committee thing is working. Troy Hambrick rushed 24 times for 74 yards, averaging 3.1 yards per carry. However, fullback Richie Anderson kept the defense off balanced with 52 yards on seven carries and Carter had two scrambles for 13 yards.

PASS DEFENSE: A -- Cornerback Terence Newman was supposed to be the next Deion Sanders. But Mario Edwards had the best primetime imitation with a 27-yard interception return for a touchdown. Newman did have three pass deflections and reserve cornerback Derek Ross added a pick against a Lions passing game that totaled 81 yards on just 10 completions.

RUSH DEFENSE: A -- The Cowboys' defense is set up for their linebackers to clean up on the run. Dexter Coakley and Dat Nguyen did their part, combining for 16 tackles. But the defensive line set the tone by its ability to stuff the run early. Reserve tackle Daleroy Stewart (sprained ankle) deserves kudos because he wasn't cleared to play until pre-game warmups but showed his toughness with a solid outing throughout.

SPECIAL TEAMS: B -- Punter Toby Gowin was solid, averaging 41.6 yards on five punts. And returner Zuriel Smith was lucky. A fumble on a punt return was nullified by a penalty against the Lions. It won't be overlooked by coach Bill Parcells.

COACHING: A -- Parcells worried all week that his team would be overconfident. He thought they would take the Lions lightly. What he got was their most complete performance of the season in blowout fashion. The Cowboys are proving to be like their coach. They take it one game at a time. What needs to be said. At 5-1, the Cowboys have matched their 5-11 win totals of the past three years in Week 6. They are riding a five-game winning streak and are undefeated on the road.

Quotes & Notes
* QB Chad Hutchinson made his first appearance of the season in the fourth quarter. He completed one of two passes for eight yards.

* CB Mario Edwards' 27-yard interception return for a touchdown was the Cowboys' fourth defensive score of the season. Al Singleton returned an interception 41 yards for a touchdown against the New York Giants on Sept. 15 and the unit had two safeties against Arizona on Oct. 5.

* K Billy Cundiff is 14-of-16 on field goal attempts and has already surpassed his field goal total from 2002 (12). He made a 28-yarder against the Lions on Sunday.

* TE Jason Witten did not run into the training room for painkillers. He was too tired. But he got there as quickly as he could. Witten, who suffered a broken jaw two weeks ago against the Cardinals, returned to action Sunday. He did not catch a pass but was in on short-yardage blocking situations. He said he felt some discomfort but was all right after the game.

"It was tough, but I made it," Witten said. "Next week, hopefully, will be better."

* DT Daleroy Stewart was a game-time decision. Literally. Coach Bill Parcells worked Stewart out before the game to see if his sprained ankle was going to hold up. Stewart promised he was good and then followed through. He was the one getting the double-team blocks, freeing La'Roi Glover for his first-quarter sack.

"I didn't want to let him [Parcells] down," Stewart said.

* CB Derek Ross is recovered from his knee injury. He played in nickel situations and had an interception late in the game.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "When the season started four of those teams were playoff teams. Who knows what's going to happen when the season unfolds. Part of the reason that's their record is because we were able to beat them." -- Bill Parcells on the Cowboys' soft early schedule.

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