Sunday, December 1, 2013

5-foot-8 North Texas grad who survived Katrina

Even when the levees broke in 2005, when Katrina’s flood waters surged and his family said goodbye to New Orleans and spent two weeks in a Mississippi evacuation center before coming to live with a family friend in Haltom City — even then, Lance Dunbar believed his day was coming.Cowboys fans were thankful that day arrived in time to light a fire under a dormant offense as Dallas rallied from 14 points down to defeat the Oakland Raiders, 31-24, and take sole possession of first place in the NFC East.DeMarco Murray, the seasoned back who has done this before, got the three touchdowns, but Dunbar led backs from both teams with 82 yards on 12 carries in the Cowboys’ seventh win of the season.He entered the game with 68 rushing yards for the entire season.“I was waiting for this day,” Dunbar said. “I’ve had to be patient. But I’ve always believed it would happen.”Dunbar finished the day on the Dallas bench after suffering a sprained knee late in the game. His status going forward is uncertain, but with extra time off before the Cowboys play a Monday night game in Chicago, it’s possible he won’t miss any time.That would be a good thing for a Cowboys offense that has been searching for a spark of any kind from a back, a receiver … anyone, really.The spark came in the third quarter with the Cowboys, still shaking the cobwebs from an improbably awful start, trailing Oakland 21-14. Dunbar took a handoff from Tony Romo at the Dallas 30, darted through a hole in the left side, then froze future Hall of Famer Charles Woodson to scoot into a huge opening down the field for a 45-yard gain. 

Dunbar could find no special words to describe the special move he put on the Raiders safety. “Just a jump cut,” he said,Buy cheap Coach Grade Sunglasses, Custom Fit Stripe Shirt and more. smiling. “It wasn’t anything I planned.”Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who had said after the New Orleans loss that the team wanted to establish Dunbar’s skill as a playmaker, said, “That first move can kind of freeze them; that second one, they’re going in the wrong direction. Dunbar, we’re proud of him. He’s a hard-working kid.”The Cowboys had planned to make more of the Murray-Dunbar tandem earlier this season. Injuries to both derailed those plans, although Dunbar said after Thursday’s win that his costly fumble in the Chiefs loss slowed his timetable.“I have had to earn their trust,” he said.The Cowboys have it. Dunbar’s quickness and shiftiness seems the ideal complement to Murray’s more powerful style.“I love it,” said Murray. “He’s a great back. He deserves to play and get his touches. We were clicking.”Actually, Dallas did not have much of a running game going at all until Dunbar put the Raiders back on their heels. Even when Murray scored his third touchdown of the day early in the fourth quarter, he had just 25 yards on 10 carries. But he finished with 63 on 17 as the Oakland defense ran out of gas.Yes, the NFL’s No. 4-ranked rushing attack was on display at AT&T Stadium. You never would have known it belonged to the Raiders, who were held to 50 yards on 25 carries.The Cowboys aren’t going to become a run-first offense anytime soon,cnbattachment nor should they try to make that happen.Food paper bag wholesale  But the useful running component that’s necessary for any team trying to protect second-half leads has been missing in action all too often in recent years.Through 11 games,nike shox shoes the Cowboys stood 29th in rushing yards — the lowest rank among clubs with winning records.It took longer to put away an Oakland team with a 4-8 record and an undrafted rookie quarterback than it should have. But in the process, the Cowboys may have discovered and established an important asset moving forward.Maybe this was Lance Dunbar’s one shining moment in professional football,Sexy Lingerie Factory his only game to lead all rushers and hear the roars of 87,000-plus in a Thanksgiving Day game at AT&T Stadium. Or maybe it was the start of what Dunbar has believed was coming all along no matter how long the odds, no matter how high the waters.

1 comment:

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