Players and coaches often talk about "getting back to the basics."
thing is, that phrase is usually said either at the start of a season
or when a player is trying to break out of a slump. But that's exactly
the phrase thrown out Wednesday by Dallas center Al Johnson and
quarterback Drew Bledsoe. Perhaps increased by the cool, damp
conditions in Seattle, the two bungled a the center-to-quarterback snap
in the Cowboys' loss to the Seahawks, and it wasn't the first time this
season the pair had … dropped the ball.
"The one in Seattle was my fault," Johnson said. "It had nothing to do
with the anything earlier in the season, but it gets magnified by the
fact that it wasn't the first time it's happened. That (snap in
Seattle) got away from me. I asked for a new ball for two plays, to try
a ball with another grip."
Bledsoe said that the faulty snaps he has had this season are a first
"The center/quarterback exchange has never been a problem (in) my
entire career," he said. "Al and I work on it, because it's
Both players said the issue can creep into their minds before plays,
and that can affect the overall offense.
"It definitely affects us," Johnson said. "It's something we've got to
take care of."
Bledsoe said that as the leader of the Dallas offense, he can't afford
to be distracted by something as basic as the snap of the ball.
"When you play the position I am," he said, "it takes away a little
from what we're trying to do."
While the weather was not ideal in Seattle -- the air was cool and
there was a misting rain at various points throughout the game --
Bledsoe did not blame the conditions for the errant snap.
"Sometimes when it's lightly raining, it's more difficult than
(playing) in a downpour," he said. "It can be harder for my guys to
catch the ball, too. So I've got to throw it a little different, with
"But I've got to get the ball first."
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