The Dallas Cowboys started the game against the Miami Dolphins under some dark skies, but by the time they walked out of Sun Life Stadium, the sky was bright blue. Dallas won 24-14 over the Dolphins and stopped a seven-game slide, momentarily gaining some momentum. Tony Romo wasn't perfect, but once again proved that his presence is all the Cowboys need to make this team go. Going back to the beginning of the 2014 season, the Cowboys are 16-3 when Romo starts and 0-8 when he doesn't. Enough said.
Romo provided some typical highlight moments and spent a good portion of the day avoiding a potent Dolphins pass rush. He awed with a left-handed completion, he wowed with a spinning scramble that resulted in a first down catch. But what he really did was take the reins in a crucial moment and shutdown the Dolphins momentum. Miami had scored and tied the game at 14-14, poised to change the course of the game, one that the Cowboys had controlled until that point. Romo engineered n eight-play, 80-yard touchdown drive and the Dolphins air went out of the balloon. For once, Dallas dominated a fourth quarter scoring 10 points while giving up none.
The Cowboys should feel good, but now is when it gets serious. As noted by by my colleague DawnMacelli, the Carolina Panthers come to visit on Thanksgiving Day. The 10-0 Panthers. The team that just decimated Washington. The team many think is the best in football. If Tony Romo can resurrect these Cowboys to the point where they can beat the Panthers. then the playoffs become something a little more attainable. Not only would Dallas get an important win, but the confidence the team would get by beating the Panthers can not be overstated. Dallas is feeling more like itself now that Romo is back, if they could win on Thursday, they might believe anything is possible - for real believe it. Not just sort of believe it. And that can mean everything for a sports team.
The Cowboys got exactly what they wanted today. They won. Washington and Philadelphia lost. The odds are still long, making the playoffs is still largely a mythical quest. But if the Cowboys can win this Thursday, maybe we'll all start to believe -- and be even more thankful for Tony Romo.