The Pittsburgh Steelers held running back extraordinaire Chris Johnson to 34 yards in their week two matchup. The Denver Broncos held Johnson to 53 yards in their week four matchup. It’s no surprise then, that these are the two games that the Tennessee Titans have lost thus far in 2010.
In their two wins this season, both of them quite convincing, Johnson has 267 yards on the ground.
Which is to say, there’s no ambiguity about the task facing Dallas this week. Containing Johnson will be the order of the day for the Dallas Cowboys defense on Sunday--and “containing” is the operative word. Hoping that the team will hold Johnson, the feature back on a run-heavy team and a highly talented one at that, to 34 yards or even 53 yards would be unreasonable--they just can’t let Johnson, as he is wont to do sometimes, single-handedly kill them.
Which makes this a nice test for Dallas. The team takes pride in their ability to stop the run, and though they’re currently ranked eighth in the NFL in this regard (they finished fourth last season), they’re out to prove that they are among the best in the game. If they do that this week, they will most likely win. Then again, whenever speaking of a runner of Johnson’s caliber, this is easier said than done.
“[Johnson]’s too fast to have one guy tackle him and take him down,” said linebacker DeMarcus Ware, per ESPN Dallas. “I think it’s going to take all 11 guys, corralling him, sort of like corralling a bull in a ring. When you just have one guy, it’s over. You’ve got to have guys surrounding him and taking him down.”
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