Hines Ward: Dallas Cowboys figuring it out at perfect time

Two-time Super Bowl champion and CNN Sport contributor Hines Ward talks about his experiences from his 1...

Posted: Dec 12, 2018 3:13 PM
Updated: Dec 12, 2018 3:13 PM

Two-time Super Bowl champion and CNN Sport contributor Hines Ward talks about his experiences from his 14 years in the NFL as well as providing other football observations. He was speaking to CNN's Perry Kostidakis.

In the 2005 season, we lost three straight heading into December, then won four in a row to end the season before winning another four on the way to a Super Bowl championship.

Dallas Cowboys

Football (American)

Football (American) events

Hines Ward

Misc people

National Football Conference

NFC East

NFL

Sports and recreation

Sports events

Sports organizations and teams

Super Bowl

How'd we do it? We leaned on our veterans. Jerome Bettis, heading into the season, figured it might be his last ride, and we felt obligated to him to turn things around. We weren't exactly playing our best football, and we knew that it started with us. Since our playoffs basically had already started, we had to take each game at a time.

I remember, the first game of that streak against the Chicago Bears, we put Jerome in and he ran over Brian Urlacher for a touchdown and it galvanized our team.

It inspired us to see this guy, in probably his last year, pushing himself that hard, and we thought, "if he's doing it, we definitely need to be." We rallied behind it, put our egos aside, and really never looked back.

If there's a team today that reminds me of us then, it's probably the Cowboys. They've grinded out two big wins the last two weeks, over New Orleans and Philadelphia, and that gives you a different mentality and confidence at the end of the season.

The defense is playing well, Ezekiel Elliott is running hard and Dak Prescott is getting more comfortable in that game manager role and making less mistakes. They've got everything you want in a playoff team.

Rapid reactions

New England taking on Pittsburgh was supposed to be two Super Bowl contenders, now, both need to win to fix their season. The Patriots still are in a position to lock up that one or two seed with a win, but that loss to Miami shook things up a lot. The Steelers, if they don't turn things around, might end up missing the playoffs completely. That rivalry speaks for itself, you don't need to hype it up anymore other than, "Tom Brady is going to Heinz Field."

I think the Chargers are set to surprise a few people. A lot of people aren't picking them to go far, but they've still got a chance to win their division and maybe pick up a top-two seed, and it comes down to a big game this week, playing Kansas City on the road. If they win that game, look out -- they've got an experienced quarterback, Melvin Gordon's coming back from injury, you look at them all around, they're solid from top to bottom.

On the flip side, the Vikings have surprised in a bad way. Last year, they were one game away from the Super Bowl, and then this year they're so up and down. They had a disappointing loss to Seattle, and the theme of all season has just been too many mistakes. You see a team with that much talent, who just paid a quarterback a bunch of money, and you expect so much more.

Saquon Barkley has by far been my favorite rookie to watch this year. He's just so electrifying, so explosive, he's a threat to do something every time he touches the ball and I think he should definitely end up winning Rookie of the Year. What he's done for the Giants, especially in a down season, has been so much fun to watch. I just really love seeing the kid play.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 38136

Reported Deaths: 1508
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hennepin12329786
Ramsey4855227
Stearns236119
Dakota233090
Anoka2200109
Nobles16686
Olmsted112415
Washington108240
Mower9512
Rice8427
Scott7154
Clay58738
Kandiyohi5731
Blue Earth4702
Wright4655
Todd4012
Carver3761
Lyon3122
Sherburne3125
Freeborn2920
Steele2311
Watonwan2240
Benton2153
St. Louis17815
Martin1685
Nicollet16612
Cottonwood1360
Goodhue1308
Winona12415
Crow Wing10612
Pine1030
Le Sueur1001
Chisago981
Otter Tail931
McLeod910
Carlton870
Dodge860
Polk812
Chippewa791
Unassigned7737
Isanti720
Waseca680
Douglas640
Itasca6412
Murray630
Meeker611
Morrison591
Becker560
Faribault560
Jackson550
Sibley542
Pennington510
Pipestone442
Renville352
Mille Lacs342
Wabasha330
Rock310
Beltrami300
Brown302
Fillmore300
Yellow Medicine300
Houston250
Swift211
Norman200
Wilkin203
Redwood180
Roseau160
Aitkin150
Cass152
Koochiching151
Wadena150
Big Stone140
Kanabec141
Marshall120
Grant110
Lincoln100
Pope100
Mahnomen81
Clearwater70
Hubbard60
Lake60
Traverse60
Lac qui Parle40
Stevens40
Red Lake30
Kittson20
Cook10
Lake of the Woods00

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 31430

Reported Deaths: 720
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk6578179
Woodbury324144
Black Hawk228758
Buena Vista171211
Johnson12928
Dallas128129
Linn127782
Marshall104919
Scott79810
Story7753
Pottawattamie72611
Wapello70830
Dubuque69922
Crawford6782
Muscatine63844
Sioux4720
Tama46529
Wright3841
Louisa36113
Jasper32417
Plymouth3225
Warren2861
Dickinson2672
Washington2409
Webster2192
Hamilton1881
Cerro Gordo1781
Boone1481
Clay1340
Clarke1312
Allamakee1284
Mahaska11617
Clinton1131
Shelby1130
Poweshiek1058
Carroll981
Pocahontas961
Bremer946
Des Moines902
Franklin900
Emmet870
Henry863
Cedar841
Taylor790
Monona760
Cherokee751
Floyd752
Hardin750
Marion700
Benton671
Guthrie664
Sac640
Jefferson630
Osceola610
Jones580
Butler552
Hancock540
Humboldt541
Lee542
Harrison530
Buchanan521
Delaware511
Iowa510
Monroe516
Fayette500
Calhoun492
Madison472
Clayton443
Lyon440
Palo Alto410
Davis401
Grundy380
Winneshiek380
Mills370
Mitchell370
Kossuth350
Howard340
Jackson320
Chickasaw310
Lucas314
Greene290
Union280
Winnebago280
Ida240
Cass220
Keokuk211
Van Buren210
Appanoose203
Page200
Worth190
Audubon161
Unassigned160
Adair150
Ringgold150
Decatur110
Montgomery102
Wayne100
Adams80
Fremont70
Rochester
Scattered Clouds
72° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 72°
Mason City
Clear
68° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 68°
Albert Lea
Clear
70° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 70°
Austin
Clear
70° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 70°
Charles City
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 72°
Hot, sticky, and stormy
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

How did businesses do on the 4th of July with tourism

Image

Stewartville's Will Tschetter commits to Michigan

Image

Covid-19 concerns, Rochester Boys and Girls Club temporarily closes

Image

Looking at the Role of School Resource Officers

Image

Seans 4pm Weather 7/6

Image

Treasury Department unveils relief loans

Image

Mandatory Mask Mandate for Rochester

Image

Approving Cares Act Funding

Image

Mountain Bike Trail System Being Developed

Image

Seans 6am Weather 7/6

Community Events