Cowboys CB Mo Claiborne says defense always has to carry team

Cowboys cornerback Morris Claiborne says the defense has always had the urgency to carry the team to victory, even with quarterback Tony Romo healthy and under center and receiver Dez Bryant lined up wide.

"We feel it, but that’s our approach every week with Romo, with Dez," Claiborne told KESN-FM Wednesday. "We, as a defense, we feel like we have to go out and play. We have to go out and win the game. That’s our mindset."

Last week, the defense couldn’t prevent a Cowboys defeat as they allowed the Atlanta Falcons to score 22 unanswered points en route to a 39-28 loss to fall 2-1 on the season. The defense only stopped Atlanta once in their five drives with three of them ending in touchdowns.

Claiborne acknowledges that the pressure for the defense to lead the team to wins is emphasized more with Romo and Bryant out of the lineup for multiple weeks.

"Even though it’s more pressure and a little bit more true now, but we feel like that every week we have to go out and win the game," said Claiborne. "We can’t sit around and wait for the offense and win it. We have to win it."

The fourth-year cornerback out of LSU believes the defense has a trio of veteran leaders to keep the team together, analyze situations, and communicate the keys to success. Claiborne says it starts with sixth-year linebacker Sean Lee then flows to sixth-year safety Barry Church and eighth-year cornerback Brandon Carr.

"Those guys are our leaders, and those are the guys we follow in for battle each and every week. Those are the guys that are always bringing us together, breaking everything down, and letting us know what it is. Some key veteran guys that have been in the game a long time, seen a lot of things. So, we follow those guys."