Cowboys defensive coordinator won’t get into any specifics about how he plans to contain the assumed Rookie of the Year, Redskins’ quarterback Robert Griffin III, on Sunday night--for obvious reasons. But he knows that his defense will have to be better than they were against the ‘Skins on Thanksgiving Day, when they allowed 38 points (28 in the first half) and 437 yards of total offense.
In a season that’s seen his unit fall to the back of the middle of the pack in terms of total defense at 19th in the league, and going into a win-or-go home road game against the rival Redskins, it’s fair to say that the usually outwardly-confident Ryan seems somewhat humbled. But he remains hopeful that his (very banged-up) defense has a great performance in them.
“We’ve been competitive,” Ryan said, per ESPN Dallas. “Maybe we’re not going to be great, but we need to be better than we’ve been. Need to keep the points down, and that’s how you win, you know, as a team. Our strength is definitely offense right now, but we don’t want to be a second-class citizen. We played that way last week, and it showed against a great offense and a talented quarterback in Drew Brees. We need to bounce back, have a great game here and be a part of this.”
To be certain, Ryan remembers the teams’ Thanksgiving Day meeting, a 38-31 Cowboys loss, well.
“Shoot, it’s a challenge,” Ryan said. “They’re the second-highest scoring offense in football, in the NFC. I think they’re fourth in the league in offense. So they got weapons everywhere. They look like they’re at full strength. It’s obviously a huge challenge for us. They slaughtered us on Thanksgiving, ruined all our plans. But that’s the way it is. That’s who you expect to play for an NFC East championship, a team like that.”
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