One of the biggest cliches in all of sports is that injuries can't be an excuse because all teams deal with them. That's all well and good, but not all teams had the same problems with injuries in 2012 as the Dallas Cowboys had on the defensive side of the ball.
Defensive tackle Jay Ratliff was limited by injuries all season, inside linebackers Sean Lee and Bruce Carter were lost for the season, as was nickel cornerback Orlando Scandrick. Ratliff, Lee and Carter are the teeth of the Cowboys defense, and their loss was huge.
That's why defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, who just finished his second season in Dallas, deserves another chance in 2013 to prove why the Cowboys coveted him so much after a stint in Cleveland.
When Ryan came to town, he preached chaos, getting to the quarterback and forcing turnovers and so far, none of that has really come to fruition.
This past season, the Cowboys were in the bottom third of the league in sacks and the bottom five and they were 22nd in the league in points allowed with 22.4 points per game.
Those numbers aren't acceptable for such a highly touted coordinator, especially one as brash as Ryan is. But with all that said, it would be unfair to give Ryan the boot now after a season during which he was dealing with a bunch of guys off the street and without his best players.