Against the best team in the NFL Tony Romo's career game wasn't quite enough. Don't get me wrong, in no way am I picking on Tony Romo here. He turned in the best performance of his professional career on Sunday evening. Yeah...yeah...yeah, I know Tony threw the interception that led to the Denver Broncos kicking the game-winning touchdown, but before being critical of that play, you might want to take a quick look at Joey Ickes' breakdown of what really went wrong. In spite of some in the media (like Tony Dungy, who with his experience as a coach in this league, really should know better than to assess blame without breaking down the film) who are blaming the loss on Romo, those who paid attention to what actually happened have a different story to tell.
Schein went on in his column to state that if Tony Romo was the quarterback that some believe him to be the Cowboys would have lost the game against the Broncos by 20 points. Romo was the reason that Denver was pushed harder on Sunday that they have been by any other team thus far in 2013, and that includes the defending Super Bowl Champions. In spite of what some would have you to believe, Tony Romo was the better quarterback on the field at AT&T Stadium yesterday.
But Romo did what an opposing quarterback had not done all season: He outplayed Peyton Manning. A lights-out performance from its QB is the only way a team can beat the Broncos, and that's what Romo delivered. It cannot, it should not, it will not be overlooked, even though Dallas lost 51-48. - Adam Schein, NFL.com
On an afternoon that saw Tony Romo become the fifth quarterback in league history to pass for both 500+ yards and five touchdowns in the same game, Adam Schein rightly concludes one thing: The Romo haters missed a great showing. On the afternoon, Tony Romo was 25/36 passing for 506 yards; he threw five touchdown passes against only one interception. His QBR was 140.0 for the game and he passed for nearly 100 more yards than did his counterpart on the Broncos. Peyton had four touchdown passes, one less than Romo and his quarterback rating of 129.6 was lower than Romo's. Calvin Watkins summed up the afternoon perfectly:
Tony Romo played great Sunday. His defense didn't.— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) October 7, 2013
What Tony Romo accomplished on Sunday was that he put his team in a position where they had an opportunity to win against the Denver Broncos. That is a feat which no other NFL quarterback, including a pair of past Super Bowl MVP winners (Joe Flacco and Eli Manning), has done this season. His teammates know what Tony did to give Dallas that opportunity: Jason Witten had this to say:
"They have a great quarterback across the way, maybe the best ever. But No. 9 played pretty well today. He created a lot of plays, made a lot of throws. Probably the best game I have seen him play in a long time, if not the best." - Jason Witten
So does the Dallas Cowboys brain-trust. Both head coach Jason Garrett and owner Jerry Jones took away plenty of positive impressions of the quarterback's performance.
I thought Tony was brilliant today. I thought he played as good of a football game as I've ever seen him play. - Jason Garrett
"Romo basically substantiated anything and everything on my personal chart. I told him it was his greatest game for us." - Jerry Jones
Unfortunately they know that Tony Romo will always be subjected to this unsubstantiated criticism until he delivers the brass ring in Dallas. Quarterbacks are unfairly judged by their rings and until Romo wins at least one nothing is going to change. Jones was asked if he expects the attacks on Romo to continue throughout Tony's career.
"They will – until he wins the Super Bowl, and then when they do that, the guy standing over on the other sideline or up in the box, John Elway, had those things said about him his entire career – or things like that said about that his entire career. He was a great player, and we all know that. He ultimately got his Super Bowls, and they don’t really say that about him anymore." - Jerry Jones
Although just like John Elway, Tony Romo is unable to do it all by himself. In the NFL that is the way quarterbacks are judged. On Sunday he played the game of his life and statistically out-dueled Peyton Manning. My feelings about the shootout with the Broncos were detailed nicely in a tweet from ESPN San Antonio's Eric Messersmith, who by the way is an admitted Pittsburgh Steelers fan. None the less, Messersmith speaks the truth regarding Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys.
If you think Tony Romo was the reason the Cowboys lost yesterday you need to turn in your fan card.— Eric Messersmith (@eric1250espn) October 7, 2013