This is in rebuttal to the very good Fan Post by viciousphilpy, good in that it has stirred up great debate. But I challenge his reasoning and look to show here why it's not a valid conclusion.
I have suggested in my responses that you can't just look at the result of a single pass from Romo in the final 5 minutes and ignore all the other data. Much like a catastrophic plane crash, there is rarely one thing that goes wrong. It is typically a series of events over time that leads to this result. Had any one of them been averted, no crash.
It's not just that the pilot turned down the wrong runway. What also happened is the copilot did not repeat the towers instructions to confirm they had them correct, the tower did not then ask for confirmation, perhaps a guidance light was out on the runway, maybe there was bad weather leading to zero viability, maybe the radar went down, and in the end, all of these errors lead to a collision on the runway, not just one of them.
According to the media, the pilot is to blame for turning down the wrong runway, but it might not have been his error alone.
I'll use the GB game for this exercise, I will attempt to prove there were no yips, no mental pressure Romo could not handle, no primeval need to lose. That is simply poppycock.
We were in command of that game at the half, yet the tale of the game was not the final 5 minutes, it was the entire second half. I ask you all to make that going back in time sound in your head as we take a look, for it is the big picture that tells the whole story, not just the final 5 minutes...
It's game day...We we’re killing them going into the half, killing them Jerry! Simms got hurt to end the half, further exposing our broken middle of our D. They have the ball to start the 3rd and Eddy Lacy goes 60 yards on the first play of the 3rd Q. Starks goes 5 on the next play, Starks for 2 the next and a 13 yard TD pass to finish the drive. 4 plays, 90 seconds, 7 points. It’s now a 16 point game.
We get the ball and take 6:29 off the clock on a FG drive, 19 point game.
They get the ball and go 80 yards in 5 minutes and 20 seconds, TD, 12 point game.
With 1:09 left in the 3rd, we pass twice, both incomplete, known passing down on 3rd and 10 and Romo is sacked. He is sacked on our 2, where we now punt from. The punt is returned 26 yards to our 22 yard line.
So far, The D and ST’s have blown the lead, Romo has not.
We go to the 4th and GB scores a TD in 2:45. 5 point game and none of it is Romo’s fault.
With 12:47 left in the 4th, Romo leads an 80 yard drive for a TD that takes 4:43 off the clock and gives us a 12 point lead.
GB gets the ball back with 7:55 left from their 20. Flynn drives 80 yards in 3:32 and freaking TD. 3 and a half minutes to go 80 yards! 5 point game and Romo has been great, D and ST’s have stunk it up.
4:17 left from our 20 and we have to score, because our D can’t stop them. But with Murray averaging 7.44 a carry and 134 yards on the day, we call passing plays, go figure. Not only the risk, but no time taken off the clock if they are incomplete. So we do this, incomplete pass, Sack, now it’s 3rd and 12 and Romo hits Dez for 13, brilliant.
Murray gets 4 freaking yards on 1st, it’s 2nd and 6 with 2:58 on the clock and we throw. Not only do we throw, we don’t block Clay freaking Mathews, lol. He is on Romo in less than a half second and forces Romo to scramble and make a hurried throw.
Romo had Austin, it was not a bad decision on his part, it was bad blocking, a forced error and great D. While Romo made the correct read and audible based on coverage, JG should have told him to run the ball no matter what, imo. The failure here started with the play calling. Then deciding there is no need to put a hat on Mathews when he's got his hand on the ground next to Smith and is obviously rushing.
So the bottom line is many drives with terrible D and one series of terrible ST’s is what actually led to the collapse. Romo should never have been put in that situation. Furthermore, we should have been running the ball and Romo should not have been allowed to audible in that situation. We should have blocked Clay Mathews and only then should Romo have taken a second to plant his foot and make a good throw.
But we all need to understand that ALL QB's throw picks in this situation. When pressure comes right at them unblocked, they have less than a second to make a decision; do they take the sack, roll out and run, throw it away, try to hit a receiver, etc. No time to consider, just chose and go.
The reason it often leads to a pick is the brain sees the open guy and begins the throwing motion, then the defender closes and the QB having already committed to the throw, releases a little too soon or a little off balance. It's a forced error by the pass rush, not a choke. The best in the history of the game have done the same thing.
This is not to say Romo did not make a mistake, he did. But he did not melt down, choke or get the yips. He took a chance based on the coverage and the fact that we had to score because our D sucked, they got pressure on him in less than a half second and he forced the throw as a result.
No yips, no choke, no brain issues, nothing to see here. Our D and ST’s collapsed, line left one of the best pass rushers in the game unblocked and he forced a hurried throw, defender made a nice pick.
There was a long series of events that led to that pick, yet VP is just looking at the stat that he threw a pick in the final 5 minutes and is ignoring everything else that led to that fatal play. There is a long list of people who share the blame in that loss, the D, the ST's, the playcaller/s, the oline, Romo, Austin for not fighting to break it up and finally, credit to the GB D for making two great plays, the pass rush and the pick.
This is why I’m convinced VP's conclusion is incorrect and incomplete. It is clearly so much more than just Romo collapsing in the end of a few games. Romo played a part, but he is far from the sole reason.
What say you?