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Wade Phillips Vs. the Scourge of Penalties

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Wade Phillips Vs. the Scourge of Penalties

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When speaking with the media on Monday, Wade Phillips addressed the obscene penalty totals that his team has rung up this season. The team is third in the league in both penalties and penalty yardage, and Sunday's loss was the third time they've picked up double-digit flags so far this season. 

Shocker of shockers: They've lost all three of those games.

It's enough to make a man throw a tantrum for the ages or, if you're Wade Phillips, make a bunch of threats that have absolutely no chance of coming true.

"I don't think there's any doubt about what we want," Phillips said. "Whether it's fines or running 10,000 100s, whatever it is, we're going to get it done."

How fresh off the boat would you need to be to believe that either of those punishments would actually be enacted?  

That sound you don't hear is one member of the Cowboys quaking in their boots. They've been around long enough to know how things go under Uncle Wade. You blow a game Sunday, Wade gets another vote of confidence Sunday night, Monday is for empty promises of improvement, Tuesday starts the process of pretending things aren't that bad and that lasts right until Sunday when the whole process starts over again. Nothing changes, no one is held accountable and that's not going to suddenly change right now.

After all, Phillips is the same guy who actually felt it was necessary to publicly absolve Miles Austin for leapfrogging Roy Williams because the team's second straight celebration penalty wasn't actually on him. Ridiculous penalty or not (and it is ridiculous), Austin still broke the edict that Phillips set down last week. When you see the coach doing that, it is pretty hard to take seriously any threat he makes about punishments looming in the weeks to come.

As if that weren't enough, Phillips also hinted at bringing officials into practice this week to go over what is and what isn't a penalty. That's a fantastic idea for junior varsity teams in high school, but is he really trying to suggest that the reason his team of veteran professional football players can't stop being penalized is because they don't know the rules? The accountability train just keeps on rolling.

I don't know about you, but I can't wait for Phillips's eventual self-help book. The title is "It's the Other Guy's Fault Your Life Hasn't Turned Out As You Hoped."

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