Cowboys coach Wade Phillips had an opportunity to return to his hometown on Sunday and match his father’s career win total.
And then there’s the whole “avoiding 0-3” thing.
In the end, Wade’s Cowboys climbed to 1-2 — and Wade tied Bum’s 82 all-time victories — with a 27-13 victory over the Texans in Houston.
The win fulfilled a promise that the players made to their coach.
“You could tell that we were ready,” Phillips said after the game. “I emphasized that we need to be that
ready every game. And that’s a promise that
I got from the team, that they will be.”
The result was a decisive win that few expected.
“Our team came out and showed the way we can play,” Phillips said. “The little
things that were missing for a couple games, I thought we came through with. We
played solid all the way around, made a lot of big plays in the game. It’s nice to
come back to my hometown and win this game. We said there was a sense of
urgency, we needed to win this game. We put some pressure on ourselves to win
the ball game and we came out and did it. We had a lot of guys that played
really good, a lot of guys that impressed me.”
A trying week following a second straight loss to open the season resulted in a players-only meeting. From Wade’s perspective, the fact that they won means that the move worked.
“It did now, yeah,” he said. “The
players’ team meeting helped now. I think it’s just the team itself getting ready
to play. We practiced well all week. It’s a combination of a lot of things.”
And so the Cowboys enter their bye week on a high note, and three of the next four games are at home (Tennessee, at Minnesota, New York Giants, Jacksonville). Though the Titans look pretty, pretty good, the Cowboys could win all four — and they’d be back on the road to, um, Dallas.