Tuesday News & Notes

The Cowboys accomplished at least one goal on Sunday in getting their struggling running game going.

They rushed for 166 yards as a team with Eddie George leading the way with a season-high 75 yards. Richie Anderson had the second-best rushing day of his career with 56 yards on the ground. ReShard Lee added 28 yards on just four carries, and fullback Darian Barnes had seven yards on two carries.

All four runners had season long runs, of 24, 14, 14 and eight respectively.

Yet, none of it mattered.

A Giants defense that was more concerned about the Cowboys pass offense did its job in limiting quarterback Vinny Testaverde to a season-low 126 yards and the offense to a season-low 10 points, including none in the second half.

"We didn't get much out of the run," coach Bill Parcells said. "We were able to run on them. But at the end of the day it wasn't as productive as it should have been."

Parcells said the Cowboys left points on the field when the suddenly vaunted running game couldn't convert a fourth-and-inches at the Giants' 5-yard line in the first quarter. He said the passing game was undone by poor throws from Testaverde and poor blocking up front.

* A magnetic resonance imaging exam on Monday confirmed what the Cowboys feared Sunday night: Cornerback Bruce Thornton tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee and will be lost for the season.

Thornton will join cornerback Pete Hunter on the injured reserve list. The Cowboys are in process of looking for more help to shore up their injury depleted cornerback position. Practice squad cornerback Lenny Williams is an option for the active roster.

The player likely to be able to help them the most is veteran cornerback Tyrone Williams, who was signed following Hunter's injury two weeks ago.

Parcells said Williams wasn't ready to play against the Giants but should be available for Sunday's game against the Steelers.

* Though the running-into-the-punter penalty on safety Keith Davis seemed like a ticky-tack call, it was the correct call and one Davis had been warned about earlier last week. "That situation was specifically covered with him in the team meeting -- the punt defense meeting -- this week," coach Bill Parcells said. "We always remind our force people on our punt defense that if it's under 5 yards to go on fourth down you're not supposed to go near the kicker at all. He didn't run into the kicker, but he ran under where the kicker's leg came down and the guy called it. I don't know I think it's a judgment call, but you shouldn't be putting yourself in that position."

* WR Antonio Bryant, who was carried off the field with an apparent ankle injury on the last play of the game, will be fine, according to Cowboys coach Parcells.

* CB Jacques Reeves had a so-so first start in place of the injured Pete Hunter. He didn't get burned for a touchdown, but the Giants picked on him for easy first downs all game. Toomer had six receptions for 66 yards.

* DE Greg Ellis has four sacks on the season after getting one against the Giants. But he did more to hurt the Cowboys than help them in the game with a helmet-to-helmet hit on the quarterback and facemask penalty that directly led to 10 points.

* RB ReShard Lee is proving to be a solid kickoff returner for the Cowboys. He had a 36-yarder against the Giants. The Cowboys are looking for someone to pair with him. Earlier, Jacques Reeves was taken off of returns to concentrate on playing right corner. Bruce Thornton was back deep against the Giants but suffered a season-ending knee injury. The Cowboys are now considering cornerback Nate Jones on returns.

CowboysHQ Top Stories