Springs Enjoys a Special Day

Washington amasses 381 yards with an efficient, well-balanced offense and a banged up Redskins defense limits a high-powered Dallas attack for a victory.
By Mike Wise
Monday, September 29, 2008


The kid who used to spend Thanksgiving at Texas Stadium, to see his father run the ball for the home team, won this game as much as Jason Campbell Sunday afternoon. Shawn Springs's final game on the field that was once his playground was as sweet and memorable as any 8-year-old sprint toward the blue-and-silver painted end zone.

He bottled up and disrupted Terrell Owens, his opponent and friend, in the first half, setting a tone for a defense that had to keep the fuel-injected Cowboys out of the end zone for Campbell and Clinton Portis to have a shot at the end.

"Reminds me of my childhood and of my relationship with my father," Springs said after the Redskins walked off the field in the regular season victors against the Cowboys for the final time at Texas Stadium.

Interrupting an interview after the game, he pulled Jim Zorn aside.

"Coach Z, could I have a minute?" Springs said.

Springs proceeded to ask Zorn if it was okay to visit his father, former Cowboys running back Ron Springs, in the hospital, instead of returning immediately with the team. Since Oct. 12, Ron Springs has been on life support after cardiac arrest and stopped breathing for more than three minutes during a procedure to remove a cyst from his arm.

Zorn was fine with Springs attending to such a personal matter, adding later: "I knew his father was gravelly ill, but I didn't know he was still in a coma. Man, that's a lot to deal with for anyone."

Indeed, and yet it hasn't prevented him from doing his job incredibly well. Springs and London Fletcher and Chris Horton, that Right Time Right Place Rookie who keeps finding the ball in his hands, contained one of the most lethal offensive units in the league.

Randy White was on local-yokel television here in Dallas during a pregame show Sunday morning. He was asked, in a very serious tone, whether the Cowboys' old Doomsday defense, led by White and Ed "Too Tall" Jones, could have stopped the Romo-and-T.O. show -- this beautifully orchestrated, multi-threat offense Jason Garrett transmits weekly from his offensive coordinator headset to Romo's ear.

This early coronation of the Cowboys needs to stop for a minute or two. Never mind Doomsday; in Week 4 Romo and Dallas couldn't even get past Greg Blache's feared Cut-and-Paste Secondary.

The Cowboys are a great, eye-candy team as long as someone isn't lodging their right shoulder into Romo's abdomen or clinging to T.O. or Jason Witten like annoying gnats. Dallas puts up nice Fantasy League points, but in the Cowboys' defining moment a year ago, a nasty Giants defense knocked them down and out.

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