Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Dallas Gives Ryan "A Great Lesson in Humility" 38-3

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Dallas Gives Ryan "A Great Lesson in Humility" 38-3

Article excerpt

Buddy Ryan's hex on the Dallas Cowboys ended Sunday with his worst loss as a head coach in the National Football League. The humiliating rout had the fans sarcastically chanting "Buddy, Buddy, Buddy" even before the first quarter was over.

Emmitt Smith, playing despite a sore right hamstring, scored twice and Troy Aikman threw two touchdown passes as the Cowboys (4-1) snapped a losing streak of seven games to Ryan with a victory over the Arizona Cardinals.

"I can say this was a great lesson in humility," Ryan said. "We were run over by an 18-wheeler."

The 35-point loss was Ryan's worst, eclipsing 32-point decisions to Chicago and the New York Giants in 1987 when he was head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Fans, who had tossed pork chops and water balloons at Ryan in previous visits to Texas Stadium, gave him a popcorn shower as he exited.

"I thought our defensive game plan stunk and that's my fault," Ryan said. "We played terrible. Dallas made a lot of big plays, and I made a lot of bad calls."

The victory was the Cowboys' eighth in succession over the Cardinals (1-4), and the 35-point differential tied a 45-10 whipping of St. Louis in 1973 as the largest defeat inflicted on the franchise by Dallas.

"Sometimes you eat the bear and sometimes the bear eats you," Dallas coach Barry Switzer said. "Today we ate the bear. We proved we have the No. 1 defense in the NFL."

Ryan dominated Dallas when he was at Philadelphia and went into the game with an 8-2 record against the Cowboys. But his pregame boast that the Cardinals would handle the defending NFL champions looked silly. And quickly.

He gave the booing crowd a big thumbs up before the game started, but his head was hanging by halftime. His offense produced only two first downs, and his second-ranked NFL defense looked tired.

The Cowboys rocked the Cardinals with four touchdowns in the first half, three of them after interceptions of Jay Schroeder by the No. …

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