Over the past few seasons one of the biggest knocks on Dallas Cowboys franchise quarterback Tony Romo (by the talking heads of the media) has been questions about his leadership. I am here to tell you, nothing could be further from the truth.
The first thing that comes to mind when I listen to these TV analysts make unfounded remarks about Tony Romo is: how much time have they spent in the Dallas Cowboys locker room? In the meetings? In the closed practice sessions? Any idiot knows the answer to that question: NONE! There is a difference between reliable reporting and conjecture. Facts and speculation. My next question is: do these guys even watch any tape? The NFL is becoming a media led circus and the fans are becoming more than the audience. Yes sports fans, you are being manipulated in to becoming part of the act.
I have not only been a Dallas Cowboys fan my entire life, but I have been covering them for a good while now. This experience has afforded me the opportunity to meet all different types of fans. It didn’t take me long to deduce that there are primarily two types. Those that actually understand the game, and those that believe and/or regurgitate everything they read or see on television. I have had several conversations with people where I swore I was listening to Warren Sapp or Bucky Brooks. I didn’t hear a single reasoned argument or fact based original comment. It was like listening to the same speculative Tony Romo hate I had just heard on the NFL Network. Last but not least, there are the sheep. In their eyes, Jerry Jones, Jason Garrett or whoever it may be, can do no wrong.
There is a difference between constructive criticism and hate. Voicing ones disappointment and/or higher expectations for the team they love, does not mean they are not a real fan. The point I am trying to make is the Dallas Cowboys have a tradition of dominance and excellence, so we as fans expect nothing less. One playoff win in 17 years is unacceptable. Don’t get it twisted! Anyone who is ignorant enough to blame all the short comings of an entire organization consisting of a 53 man roster, a coaching staff, a training staff, a scouting department and a management structure etc, on Tony Romo: (trying to be polite here) is dumber than a box of rocks. In fact, that’s an insult to the rocks. Enough said!
Tony Romo made it clear during contract negotiations that he wanted to be more involved with the offense; this fact alone speaks volumes about his leadership. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that a guy who is out there every week facing defenses on the field has a better perspective on how to attack them than a guy who spent his career carrying a clip board. Anyone who studies football should be able to see that the Dallas Cowboys game planning is lacking. There are too many times where the outcome of the game is put on the shoulders of Tony Romo to try and make a miraculous comeback because it took Jason Garrett too long to make the necessary adjustments.
In fact, if you pay real close attention, in most cases, the Dallas Cowboys don’t start moving the ball well until they go to the no huddle offense and Tony Romo is calling the plays. If you pay even closer attention, you will notice how many times he is having to tell guys where to line up and making the line calls as well. It makes me wonder how many times he has to explain the play to certain players in the huddle.
This lack of preparation amongst the players falls on the HC/OC. How many times do you see other NFL QB’s having to tell their guys where to line up? It is ridiculous that a professional athlete who is being paid very well should have to be told where to line up. In fact, the big question is: why is someone who doesn’t know where to line up even on the field? The fact that Tony Romo is doing the coaches job on the field speaks to his leadership as well.
Prior to the Dallas Cowboys drafting Gavin Escobar and Terrance Williams, Tony Romo took a look at them on film as requested by his owner and general manager Jerry Jones. In spite of the buzz across the nation trying to stir up the fans and/or create ratings by spinning the story about Tony Romo missing OTA’s , as usual trying to make him look bad by it, this minor setback can also be looked at as a positive thing. It gives Tony Romo a chance to observe the young players from a coaches perspective. When he is out there as a player, he has to focus on the play he is running. This prevents him from seeing how a player on the other side of the field is doing his job. In order for a QB to interact with his players and get the best use out of them, it helps to know their strengths and weaknesses. If he doesn’t know what’s broken, it’s impossible for him to help them fix it.
In spite of the fact that Tony Romo was unable to participate in the OTA’s, it gave him the opportunity to take the time to point out things to both players last week.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“You talk to him about little things sometimes,Ã¢â‚¬Â Romo said of Williams. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I think there are certain things Terrance does very well. I think thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s some things heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll continue to work on and get better with it that can help him as a player and help us as a team. Terrance has a good head on his shoulders. He wants to work hard, so I think heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s going to continue to get better and better.Ã¢â‚¬Â
On Escobar, Romo said,
Ã¢â‚¬Å“HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s very fluid. I think heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s natural, so heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s got some good upside in that regard.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Tony Romo was asked what he misses having to sit out of early practices.
“I think sometimes timing,” Romo said Tuesday, according to ESPNDallas.com. “But at the same time, I’m going to wear that out with them, too. I’m sure they’ll want to get out of here a little bit in June and July, but I’ll probably force the hand a little bit to keep them around and it’ll be a good thing for us. It’ll be just a bonus, time wise.”
People can say what they want about Tony Romos’ leadership ability, but here again, the fact that he is going to get on the players to come in on their own time this summer and work on improving the offense etc, speaks volumes about his dedication to this football program. It also amazes me how many forget that he had more players in attendance for the player led workouts during the lockout than any other QB in the NFL. I am willing to bet he will have more players working out on their own time again this year than any other QB in the NFL.
The fact remains that there were at least 20 NFL GM’s who would have sold the farm to sign Tony Romo in 2014. In spite of the fact that he knew there were teams that are closer to a Super Bowl depth wise and their biggest need was at the QB position, he opted to stay in Dallas without even testing the market first. Tony Romo said he wanted to finish what he started with the Dallas Cowboys! How many NFL players are that loyal to their team? How many only care about the money and either try to test the market or hold out to get paid? I just wish the fans of the Dallas Cowboys were as loyal to Tony Romo as he is to their team!
Roger Staubach is known as one of the greatest NFL quarterbacks of all time. He acquired nicknames like “Roger The Dodger” because of his ability to extend plays; “Captain Comeback” because he never quit on his team and no matter how far behind they were going in to the 2nd half, fans always believed that Roger would lead them to a victory. Are you aware of the fact that Tony Romo is pressured more than twice as often as Staubach? Roger had HOF and Pro Bowl offensive linemen and Tony Dorsett in front of him. Not to mention the “Doomsday Defense”. Are you aware that Tony Romo has more 4th quarter comebacks, more TD’s, more passing YDS, and a higher passer rating with a lot less starts in the NFL than Roger Staubach? Are you aware of the fact that the fans and the media alike said that Staubach and the Cowboys just can’t win the big one? Does any of that mean that Roger wasn’t a leader? It wasn’t until Roger Staubach finally got over the hump and the Cowboys won a Super Bowl that he got the recognition he deserved.
Do you remember when Troy Aikman went 1-15 with the Dallas Cowboys? The fans wanted his head on a platter. It wasn’t until Jimmy Johnson put a solid offensive line in front of him and gave him Emmitt Smith that he started to even compete. Does that mean he wasn’t a leader? Once again, not having anywhere near the same quality of an offensive line, running game or defense, Tony Romo has surpassed all of Troy Aikmans accomplishments as an NFL QB outside of the Cowboys winning a Super Bowl. This is why I said at the beginning of this article that the fans have become part of the act for this circus known as the media. Whoever the idiot was that started this ludicrous misconception that so many uneducated people feed in to, should be decently fed and then decently shot. If you can show me one NFL quarterback who can go out on the field by himself and win against even a High School team, I will bow down and kiss your butt on national television. Enough Said!