The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel recently published a treatise on the current state of tackling in the NFL, with several former players--including former Cowboys’ safeties Darren Woodson and Roy Williams--giving their two cents on what they see as the decline of “good” tackling in the league.
The entire piece is pretty interesting, but for our purposes, we’ll focus on Woodson’s remarks on his former team. Specifically, Woodson says that today’s Cowboys “are garbage at tackling. They won't hit a soul.”
We’re in no place to disagree after watching the defense in 2011. The defense whiffed on tackles in pretty much every way one can whiff on a tackle. In one, forgettable game against the Giants, for instance, Terence Newman was hurdled by both Brandon Jacobs and Bear Pascoe--neither exactly known for their agility--while coming up with an armful of air.
Woodson believes this change is relatively new--that in his day, good tackling was a point of pride.
"The guy made the catch but the RAC yards weren't there," Woodson said. "Myself, Deion (Sanders), Brock Marion, even Larry Brown. . . . There was a sense of embarrassment. Now, there's no embarrassment. Nobody's embarrassed if they miss a tackle."
The problem, Woodson says, is that players now are more focused on making ESPN’s Top Plays with a big hit than limiting yards after catch.
"ESPN, and not just ESPN, but every broadcast you see,” he said. “The NFL itself is making money off the big hit. Everybody wants to come in and make that big hit. If they do that, they have a chance at Pro Bowls.”
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