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Three Trends to Consider Through Two Dress Rehearsals

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Three Trends to Consider Through Two Dress Rehearsals

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CANTON, OH - AUGUST 8: Tony Romo #9 of the Dallas Cowboys passes the football against the Cincinnati Bengals during the 2010 Pro Football Hall of Fame Game at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Field at Fawcett Stadium on August 8, 2010 in Canton, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

Before we start, it should be stressed that the past two Cowboys games have been preseason games, and we all know those don't mean much of anything.

However, there are a few trends that have proven true in both games -- Sunday's win over the Bengals and Thursday's loss to the Raiders -- so far.

First of all, the first-team offensive unit once again moved the ball with ease between the 20s, but, once again, stalled horribly once it reached the red zone.

The Cowboys pass protection was horrid as Tony Romo was sacked three times on the Cowboys' first series of the night, and Romo looked lost at times. Granted, teams don't utilize hardly any of their playbooks at this point in the season and everything is very vanilla, but it's still a cause for concern.

With the Cowboys' red-zone struggles comes a reliance on second-year (first-year field goal) kicker David Buehler. To his credit, the hard-hitting (in all seriousness) kicker looked great on Thursday, making good on all three of his field goal attempts and booting kickoff after kickoff five yards deep in the end zone. But still, Buehler is nothing more than an unproven commodity who couldn't even sniff the job last year when the kicker position was up for grabs. But so far, so good, I suppose.

One major positive for Dallas, and its fans, has been the play of the first-team defensive unit, which hasn't allowed a single point in two preseason games, albeit in limited time.

Linebacker Bradie James has been an animal through two games, and his compadres Keith Brooking and Victor Butler have also been great thus far. Also, Orlando Scandrick has impressed so far at cornerback, where he will look to further implant his name on a list of good young corners in the NFL.

So things aren't gloom and doom by any means, but there are some alarming things going on with the Cowboys offense. But then again, it is just preseason.

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