Romo Was A Warrior In A Sea Of Ineptitude Against The ‘Skins

   Jason Witten #82 Of The Dallas Cowboys Runs
What a game last night against the Washington Redskins. It had all the drama of a post-season game and all the mistakes and mental lapses of a pre-season game.

The 18-16 win was as maddeningly frustrating to watch as it was wonderfully satisfying and enjoyable, when all was said and done.

And while running back Felix Jones, who rushed for a career high 114 yards, and Dan Bailey, who kicked an amazing six field goals, will get most of the headlines today, to me the game ball and all of the credit for that win goes to quarterback Tony Romo.

  Tony Romo #9 Of The Dallas Cowboys Celebrates

Nobody has given Romo more flack than me on this site, but I have to give credit where credit is due and last night I saw not just a quarterback on that field, but a true leader – a teacher – and a fearless warrior.

Although the score would indicate a hard-fought evenly-matched encounter with Washington, the truth is that the Cowboys should have won this game in a 33-16 blow-out win.

Dallas Cowboys Quarterback Tony Romo Grabs

The number of missteps on offense, defense and special teams were just too many to count and as costly and deflating as you can get. Yes it was a win, and that’s all that matters, but it was as ugly a win as you will ever see, and clearly there’s a lot that needs fixing on this team.

To begin, I wonder if Jerry Jones ears were ringing last night as I cursed him out every time Cowboys center Phil Costa muffed a snap, six times to be exact with four of them being very costly. Was this pathetic performance by Costa worth saving a few million dollars by cutting the always reliable Andre Gurode? I’ve never seen Romo get so infuriated and animated that he would chew out a teammate in front of millions on national TV, and believe me, Costa deserved every bit of that profanity laden tirade by Romo. You have better odds of winning big in a game of online roulette, than Costa going an entire game without at least one muffed snap. That is unacceptable!

  Tony Romo #9 Of The Dallas Cowboys Reacts

And what the heck has gotten into Kevin Ogletree? So far, in the first three weeks of the season, Tree has been taking the field and doing his best Roy Williams impression with pass after pass aimed at his chest and slipping through his fingers. He was killing me last night, running bad routes, muffing up perfect passes, lining up incorrectly, geez… Get your head in the game or get your ass on the bench!

Is there anyone among you who gets as nauseous as I do every time Tashard Choice touches the football? What purpose does Choice serve on this team, can somebody please tell me? He is the biggest waste of a roster spot on this team, oh and while I’m at it, great job by Felix last night, but was anyone surprised he ended the game on the sidelines nursing an injury? Call him Mr. Glass. What I would give to have an every-down running back who can punish defenses and CONVERT on third down and EXECUTE in the red zone!

Marty B? Get outta my face and outta our place – you are as soft as new and improved Charmin. He may be the only Cowboy I’ve ever seen who hits the ground before he even gets tackled and he does it all the time. He’s a terrible blocker, has no toughness, can’t hold onto the ball, and is just a negative impact player on this team. Off with his head…

I should be elated after a big win against a bitter rival like the Redskins, but the truth is I’m frustrated. I saw too many mistakes and too many failures to execute inside the 20 which is becoming very routine for this team I’m sad to say. We need some asses kicked in that locker room and on that practice field this week.

   Roy Helu #29 Of The Washington Redskins Runs

On a happier note, I want to recognize the outstanding efforts by linebacker Sean Lee who is an emerging star, and wide receiver Laurent Robinson who made a couple of key receptions last night. Of course I also tip my cap to place kicker Dan Bailey. Could this spell the end for David Buehler?

Romo Named NFC Offensive Player of the Week

For the fifth time in his career and the first time in nearly four years, Tony Romo was named  the NFC’s Offensive Player of the Week.

Romo led the Cowboys to a thrilling comeback victory last  Sunday against the 40ers with an impressive 345 yard- two touchdown performance.

What made last weekend’s performance all the more impressive was how Romo came back from a punctured lung and broken rib to win the game 27-24 in overtime.

For the Cowboys, this is the first NFC Offensive Player of the Week award since 2009 when Miles Austin won the honor after a 250 yard day in an overtime win over Kansas City.

Congratulations!

Injuries mount for Cowboys as Redskins come to town

Tony Romo, fractured rib and punctured lung

Miles Austin, hamstring

Dez Bryant, bruised thigh

Phil Costa, sprained knee

Felix Jones, dislocated shoulder

Terance Newman, pulled groin

Bill Nagy, neck

Orlando Scandrick, high ankle sprain

Mike Jenkins, shoulder, neck and knee

 With the Cowboys heading into their week three home opener against the 2-0 Redskins, it’s the injuries that stand out and not the great comeback victory over the 49ers and Tony Romo’s courageous performance. Even with the long list of injuries Romo’s performance needs to be recognized.

With so much negative said about Romo’s 4th quarter performance against the Jets in week one and I was one who was critical of him. He should get equal praise for coming back into the 49ers game and leading the team to 13 unanswered points which included the game winning field goal in overtime. Romo put himself at risk for further injury for his team and made a statement that the “C” on his uniform is there for a reason.

As the injuries continue to mount for the Cowboys it’s unsure who will be playing and who will not come next Monday night against the Redskins. Reports are that Romo will be playing.

“I would not think there’s any reason to think that he won’t play Monday,” Garrett said. “We’re certainly hopeful.”

As the week moves on it will become clearer whether Phil Costa, Felix Jones, Dez Bryant and Bill Nagy will be able to play.

With Mike Jenkins playing with all his injuries against the 49ers, the good news is that Terance Newman announced on Twitter last night that he will be back for the Redskins game.

“I’m back this week and that’s all I’m gonna say. Good night an God Bless!”

Reports are that Miles Austin will be out until after the Cowboys bye week with his hamstring injury that he re-aggravated in the 49ers game. After the Redskins the Cowboys have another home game against the Lions and then go into their bye week. Coming out of the bye week is a trip to New England to play the Patriots on October 16th.

With Miles Austin out and Dez Bryant’s playing status unclear this week  it looks like a great opportunity for Kevin Ogletree, Dwayne Harris and Jesse Holley to shine in the National Spotlight for the Cowboys.

With the Cowboys at 1-1 and the Redskins at 2-0 it should be a classic Cowboys and Indians showdown in Texas come Monday night.

Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

As the Cowboys took a 24-10 lead on the NY Jets at the start of the fourth quarter last night all seemed good in the world. After that the world came crashing down as the Cowboys were outscored 17-0 by the Jets and lost 27-24. I understand it’s the first game of the season and I understand that sometimes things like this happen. But Tony Romo has made a habit of making bad decisions at important times during games.

We can start with Romo’s decision to dive short of the goal line on 3rd down when the Cowboys were ahead 24-17 and about nine minutes left in the game. Romo fumbled and the Cowboys came away with no points. I understand he wanted a touchdown on that play, but better decisions need to be made. If nothing was there for him then simply throw it out of the end zone. Then attempt a short field goal, which if made would have put them up by ten points, 27-17.  As the quarterback smart decisions need to be made in that situation. Sure as a fan and a writer I can sit here and say what I thought he should have done, but it has been too often in his career that Romo has made bad decisions that have put his team in bad situations. 

Lets move to when the score was tied 24-24. The Cowboys were sitting at their own 41 yard line with 59 seconds left to play. Plenty of time to position themselves for a game winning field goal attempt. On first down Romo rolls to his right and throws a pass right at Darrelle Revis who easily intercepts the pass in front of Dez Bryant. That of course led to Nick Folk kicking the game winning field goal for the Jets. What would make Romo decide to throw that pass? He must have seen Revis standing there. It wasn’t like Revis made a great play or stepped in front of Bryant. It’s just another example of a bad decision that has plagued Romo for just about his whole career.

I will also add this while I’m at it. Regarding the touchdown pass from Romo to Miles Austin. Let’s be honest! It was a pass that went directly to Antonio Cromartie. If it wasn’t for Austin ripping the ball away from Cromartie it would have been an interception for a touchback.

Tony Romo has had many good games since becoming the Cowboys starting quarterback in 2006, but far too often he has shown that he is careless with the football at crucial times and ends up hurting the team. I’m not going to write that he doesn’t care about winning because I’m sure he does. He’s not out there working hard every day because he has nothing better to do. He is out there because he loves the game and wants to win. He needs to be smarter and make better decisions at important times during games. 

Elite quarterbacks make good decisions that put their teams in a position to win games. They are not careless with the football. Maybe Romo is all he can be at quarterback. Maybe he is at the highest level he can achieve. But how long should the Cowboys stay patient and wait to see if there another level of play?  Does Tony Romo have a championship level like Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, or Ben Roethlisberger? As a fan it’s beyond frustrating and it’s at a point where you are not waiting to see if Romo makes a bad decision, but wondering when Romo will make a bad decision that will hurt his team again.

The Cowboys Reflect On 9/11

What an emotionally charged evening it will be tonight when the Cowboys take on the New York Jets on the tenth anniversary of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

DallasCowboys.com had a nice tribute piece compete with video that is definitely worth a look.

They also have four narratives from current Cowboys who were very close to the events of that fateful day. Here are two of them.

Jesse Holley, Roselle, N.J.

“I was at school when it happened, and every TV in the school suddenly was on the news. You know how things go, there were whispers all over the school, and every classroom you went into was just complete silence. All the teachers stopped their lesson plans, everybody stopped what they were doing, and we were locked onto the TV in each classroom, just watching and praying for everybody that was there, and checking on your family members that might have been in that area to see if they were OK.

“Being that close to the city, it was a scary situation because you didn’t know when the next one was going to come. You didn’t know where it was coming from. You just hoped that it was the end of the madness for that day.

“That afternoon we went out to the practice field for football practice, and you could still see the smoke coming from the buildings all the way in Roselle, N.J.

“It was hard to concentrate. We had a couple of guys whose moms, dads, brothers actually worked in the city, so we were trying to conduct practice that day, but it was a situation that you just couldn’t even focus on the matter at hand. At that time we just wanted to come together as a group and try to be together, make sure nobody was apart. If you had a situation or problem you were able to get some help and have some guys around you.

“I remember we had one kid on our team whose brother was an FBI agent, and actually worked in the city. He was a really good friend of mine, and he was really down. It just so happened that his brother was running late that morning going to work, and didn’t make it into the city on time, was on his way to work when it happened. And that was a blessing because if he had been at work he would’ve been right there at Ground Zero. He wouldn’t be here today.

“I just remember it vividly. You can still smell the smoke. It’s something that you’ll never forget, a lasting memory that you’ll have forever. It was a horrific situation, one I hope we never have to relive.”

Jason Garrett, Manhattan
“We played Denver on Monday night, in Denver, Sept. 10. My memory of that is it was a rough game for us. Eddy McCaffrey, the receiver for Denver, tore his ACL and was going to be out for the year. Morten Andersen was our kicker, and he missed an extra point because the holder didn’t get the ball placed properly. He came over to me on the sideline and said, ‘You’re holding next week.’

“We got back to the Newark airport at, say, 5 o’clock in the morning, and I was living in the city. So we took a bus from the airport to our complex, and then I drove into the city. My memories are the big story on the radio that morning was Michael Jordan coming back from retirement. I probably got back to my apartment at 7, and my wife and I watched the Today Show for a half hour, and I went to sleep. Now it’s Tuesday, we’re working the next day, I’ll catch up on some sleep on the day off. Probably an hour or so later the sirens going past my windows were just unbelievable.

“We lived at 79th and West End, and West End is a quiet street commercially, even though there’s always noise in New York. But it was just ridiculous, siren after siren. I wake up kind of, ‘What is going on?’ At that time we got a phone call, and Eric Bjornson, who used to play here, a good buddy of mine, called from California and said, ‘Are you guys OK?’ We’re like, ‘What do you mean, OK?’

“‘Turn the TV on.’

“So we did, and probably a half an hour later the second plane went in. You’re watching it on TV, probably four or five miles from the site, and it all feels like a movie. Looking at it on the screen, it doesn’t feel like it’s real life right outside your window. I have a number of friends who worked down in that Wall Street area, in and around those building, so the first inclination is, are those guys OK? You try to make the phone calls and you can’t get through to anybody.

“One of the most interesting memories I have is that the weather was so beautiful that day and that entire week. Just beautiful blue sky, you couldn’t describe it unless you saw it. And then you see people coming from Lower Manhattan north, just walking with their briefcases, north, away from the whole thing. In my mind their suits are kind of tattered. Sometimes your mind kind of conjures those things, but that’s my memory, everybody coming from the south to the north. People were very much in a daze.

“My memory is they didn’t officially cancel or postpone that week’s games until like Thursday, which was ridiculously long given the circumstance. And then when you’re in the city, at different points, you’re not allowed to leave. They’re blocking all the bridges and tunnels. Those logistics of life crept in quickly.

“I played a couple more years with the Giants. Immediately it was an incredibly emotional time. The number of people killed in the tragedy was so pervasive. The firemen, the policemen, all the people you saw on a daily basis were affected by it, and indirectly you were affected by it. It was just really, really emotional and sad.

“But then after that, my memories are of a sense of pride in how people responded to it. I remember immediately afterward there was a call to go give blood. And by the time we went to do it, 24, 48 hours later, they were saying we don’t need any more. People rallied around and were supportive of each other. It’s such a diverse place, but you got the feeling everyone was unified in their response.

“During such a tragic time, the immediate response was just so great, loving and caring and compassionate. Those are my memories as much as anything else. And then it fades from memory a little bit, but I don’t think it faded there. It was in the forefront of everybody’s mind for a long time.”

Cowboys Sign Jason Witten To 5-Year Extension

As first reported by Adam Schefter of ESPN, the Dallas Cowboys have signed seven-time Pro Bowl tight end Jason Witten to a five-year contract extension.

The report has now been confirmed by Todd Archer of ESPN Dallas.

The Dallas Cowboys on Sunday made sure tight end Jason Witten would be a Cowboy for life with a five-year contract extension. A source familiar with the deal told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter the deal is worth $37 million and includes $19 million guaranteed.

Witten’s deal comes two days after the club signed Jay Ratliff to a five-year extension worth $40 million. The Cowboys and Witten concluded the deal at the team’s Newark hotel late Saturday night.

Like Ratliff, Witten had two years left on his contract and was not scheduled to hit the open market until 2013. He signed a seven-year, $29.5 million deal in 2006 that included $12 million guaranteed, which was the most at the time for a tight end.

Witten commented on the extension via Twitter this morning and said:

“I am blessed to say that I will retire a cowboy!Thx to the jones family, and all the cowboy staff! True honor to put on the star!! #gameday,” he wrote.

Witten, 29, is coming off a 94-catch, 1,002-yard season in 2010 in which he also had a career-high nine touchdowns. By next season, he could become the Cowboys’ all-time leader in receptions.

A Bad Ending for A Great Prospect!

In watching the pre-season games this year a few names have stood out, but the one I was really excited about was Raymond Radway.  It seemed he had what it took to win a spot on the roster and in the final 3 seconds of preseason, his year abruptly ended with a bad break. 

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Raymond Radway was perhaps three seconds away from making the Cowboys’ 53-man roster. Radway, the undrafted rookie wide receiver from McKinney, suffered a broken left fibula and tibia and will have surgery immediately after the team returns to Dallas.

ESPN reports that Radway’s fibula and tibia are broken.  I hate to see anyone on either team hurt in a game I’m watching but in looking at that play, I could tell it was going to be a bad one!  God speed Radway!  We hope you have a fast recovery, and look forward to seeing you out there again in a Cowboys uniform!