PHILADELPHIA -- Rob Ryan’s forlorn face was flashed on the big screen late in the fourth quarter, giving Eagles fans their only reason all night to boo.
Perhaps they should have laughed.
Ryan won the battle of the bulletin board quotes. He was thoroughly beaten where it really counts, though: on the scoreboard.
Dallas’ defensive coordinator had no solution for stopping Philadelphia’s Michael Vick and LeSean McCoy in the Eagles’ 34-7 rout of the Cowboys on Sunday night.
“If I gave them any extra motivation ... I certainly never backed it up,” Ryan said. “I gave our guys a lousy plan. We had no chance. It’s all on me.”
Ryan, the son of beloved former Philadelphia coach Buddy Ryan, called the Eagles winners of the offseason “all-hype” team and predicted the Cowboys would “beat their (butt).”
Dallas ended up the team feeling sore.
The matchup between NFC East rivals was built more around Ryan’s
comments that stirred excitable feelings again last week in Philadelphia’s locker room than the impact on the standings.
Ryan vowed in the postgame locker room he’d continue to speak his mind, but accepted his share of the blame for this disastrous effort.
“It was an embarrassment to the organization,” he said. “It was all on me.”
Well, his defense and an ineffective offense sure shares the blame.
The numbers were abysmal: The Eagles tallied 495 total yards and held the ball for 42:09. McCoy rushed for 185 yards and two touchdowns. Vick threw for 279 yards and a pair of scores.
The Cowboys could hang their star on a defense that was only allowing about 70 yards rushing a game.
McCoy and the Eagles shredded that stat in the first quarter.
McCoy ran for 80 yards and a 2-yard touchdown and the Eagles
rushed for 115 yards overall in the quarter.
“It comes down to preparation and I got beat by Andy Reid,” Ryan said. “It’s ridiculous.”
The Eagles refrained from gloating and pointing fingers back at Ryan. They proved their point on the field from the opening drive.
“You’re dealing with guys where there’s a little machismo, there’s a little bit of pride, a little dignity in your work and all those types of things, so when people say things—especially coaches or players—we take offense to it, just like any other team,” Eagles wide receiver Jason Avant said. “So we took that comment seriously when he said it. But we won’t go out and say the game tonight was because he said that. That would be foolish. The players have to play the game.”
Tony Romo was 18 of 35 for 203 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He didn’t connect at all with receivers Dez Bryant or Miles Austin in the first half. Bryant didn’t catch a pass until late in the fourth quarter.
Bryant argued with an official and shook his arms when a potential TD pass his way was busted up late in the fourth. On the next play, defensive end Jason Babin sacked Romo on fourth down and another drive was finished.
Romo got sacked four times and threw an interception to Nnamdi Asomugha. Asomugha set up Philadelphia’s third scoring drive by picking off Romo’s pass at the Eagles 33 after the ball bounced off Martellus Bennett’s hands.
The Cowboys spoiled the shutout bid in the third quarter when Romo threw a 70-yard TD pass to Laurent Robinson.
Coming off a 253-yard rushing performance in a win over St. Louis, Cowboys rookie DeMarco Murray crashed to reality. He ran for only 74 yards -- 26 coming on one run.
Dallas coach Jason Garrett had no excuses.
“Overwhelmed? I just think we didn’t play well,” he said.
The Cowboys sustained injuries they hope won’t extend beyond
Sunday. Linebacker Sean Lee (left wrist), cornerback Mike Jenkins (right hamstring) and punter Mat McBriar (left foot) all were knocked out against the Eagles. Lee was tied for the NFL lead among linebackers with three interceptions.
Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey replaced McBriar and his 39.5 average on two punts was a just a tick better than McBriar’s 38.7 average on three.
Ryan and the Cowboys were humbled.
“It’s not the first time I may have said something and got my (butt) kicked,” Ryan said. “I don’t say anything I don’t really believe. Hopefully, it will be the last time it ever happens. But whatever happened, hell, it’s all my fault.”