Time to Bounce Back

IRVING, TX - Dallas veterans seek to help young teammates through slide.

Losing is never easy. Whether it's by a single point, or a blowout, NFL players as a rule are too competitive to tolerate losing.

"It was a shock," defensive end Greg Ellis said of Sunday's 35-7 thrashing at the hands of the rival Washington Redskins. "(After a game like that), you're down. It's never a good move to have a loss to anyone. But you've got to go out and do something about it."

The Cowboys will get that chance Saturday when they face the Carolina Panthers.

"After a game like that, a lot of guys want to take a 30-minute break and play it over," tight end Dan Campbell said. "But it doesn't work that way -- that's why I think it's good that we're playing Saturday."

Ellis said the best way for the Cowboys to get back on the winning track, while licking their wounds from Sunday's loss to the Redskins, is to remain focused on what's at stake.

"We're still in the hunt," he said of his team's pursuit of a spot in the playoffs. "If we lose this week, we're out of the hunt. We know how good Carolina is as a team. If a player says 'this is too much for me,' then we don't have to worry about it, because if you have too many like that, you're not going to be successful. But I don't think we have many of those on this team."

Campbell said it's partly his job to help the team's younger players recover their confidence and put forth an effective effort Saturday against the Panthers.

"That's part of our job," he said. "That's why (head coach) Bill (Parcells) has a lot of veterans on this team. It's do-or-die time. It's always tough, but we can't lay down. It's time to make a push."

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