Was He High?

When Jerry Jones traded up to get Quincy Carter, he made everything difficult for his new "star"

Obviously, attention comes with the job, and he'll have to get used to it sooner or later. But wouldn't it stand to reason that a wide-eyed kid trying to find his way--and he is still a kid, despite his advanced age. For godsake, he has braces and says "thank you"--would benefit from a shadow's protection? Wouldn't it be that much simpler to learn hundreds of plays without scores of flashbulbs popping in your face? Wouldn't it be best to bring him along slowly?

Again, don't mention Tony Banks--the Cowboys equivalent of putting Fix-A-Flat on a tire worn to the rim.

"I don't really want to get into too much of who's gonna start yet 'cause we're not in pads," head coach Dave Campo says, looking at the crowd through those trademark thick glasses. "I feel Tony Banks is our quarterback. Now, he's had some ups and downs, but we expect him to rebound."

A vote of confidence if I've ever heard one. You think this is bad? What happens when Banks skips a pass or 10? Remember, this is the same guy who last season skillfully guided the Baltimore Ravens through five weeks without a touchdown.

From here, it only gets more complicated for Carter. So, pressure?

"I'm not thinking about that too much right now," Carter says. Clad in a pair of gray cotton shorts and a white Dallas Cowboys T-shirt with a single chain dangling from his neck, he looks around contemplatively before continuing. "I'm just trying to learn as much as I can. I'm just trying to concentrate on football."

He didn't ask for this. Probably doesn't want it, either. It's not his fault.

But it is his fate.

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