[In the ten seasons that Tony Romo has been the starting quarterback, he's engineered some great fourth-quarter heroics to bring the Cowboys to victories. Since 2006, no quarterback has had more fourth-quarter comeback victories, 25 to be exact, than Tony Romo. His passer rating in the final quarter of football is an astounding 102.9, five points higher than the number two guy (Aaron Rodgers). Romo also holds the mantle of most game-winning drives among active quarterbacks (29) as well as passer rating in the final two minutes (93.1).
Over the next several weeks before the team heads out to Oxnard and starts it all up again, I thought we could take some time to look back at Mr. Clutch Quarterback himself. We're going to rank all of his comeback tales from good to great, from awesome to completely amazing. Here's looking at you, Mr. Romo.]
17. A Sunday Night Shootout In Dallas (December 2, 2012)
There seem to be quite a few games from the 2012 season in which it took some late-game heroics for the Cowboys to escape with a win. This game started quick and it was heavy-hitting all the way to the end as the Cowboys and Eagles traded haymakers.
The first drives for both teams were three and outs but the fuel was there, they just needed a spark. The Eagles were the first to step in a lay the first hit. Bryce Brown broke off a 24-yard run and then Nick Foles hit back-to-back completions for another 20+ yards. On the Cowboys 10, Brown ran around the left side to punch it for the score and the Eagles go up 7.
On the next drive, Romo was truly cooking after hitting Cole Beasley and Jason Witten for 11- and 13-yard completions. Then he runs right up the middle for another 15 yards. At the Philly 24, Romo finds DeMarco Murray for another 11 yards. Doug Free is called for holding but it's offset by Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie's holding. Mackenzy Bernadeau is then called for holding and the Cowboys have to bring out Dan Bailey to cut into Philly's lead 7-3.
The Eagles can't get moving on the next drive and have to punt. Meanwhile, Romo completes an 11-yard pass to Witten on third down but it's challenged and overturned. Dallas punts it back to the Eagles who gash the Cowboys again with Bryce Brown for 39 yards. Foles hits Jeremy Maclin on a screen and he proceeds to gain another 21 yards. Brown runs it in from the five to give the Eagles a 14-3 lead.
On the ensuing Cowboys drive, Romo carves up the secondary as he goes 2 for 2 and 20 yards to Witten. He fumbles on the next play but Kevin Ogletree bails him out. Then Romo finds Witten for 13 yards, Dez Bryant for 14, Miles Austin for 19 yards and a big 28-yard pass to Witten over the Eagles prized free-agent Nnamdi Asomugha. With :45 seconds in the half, Murray runs it in to cut the Eagles lead to four points. The Eagles promptly use all of their timeouts and Alex Henery nails a 43-yarder to put them back up by 7. We're at the half, Eagles 17, Cowboys 10.
After the half, Romo picks up where he left off with the help of Murray and Felix Jones in the running game. Murray breaks out a 27-yard scamper and Romo finishes the drive with a 23-yard TD pass to Dez Bryant. The X is up and the game is tied at 17 all.
Starting at their own 20, Foles and his Eagles waste no time getting down the field once again as he finds Riley Cooper for 15 yards and a touchdown to reclaim the lead, 24-17. Romo throws slants and screens bruising Asomugha pretty badly as the Cowboys make it to the Eagles 39. On 4th and 1, what looks like a failed run by Murray is overturned by the official and the Cowboys keep rocking. Romo finds Dwayne Harris for 11-yards and then follows that up by torching the Eagles on a 27-yard touchdown pass to Austin. 24-24 is the score with 13:48 to go in the game.
The Eagles take eight plays to get back to the Cowboys 24 but fail on 3rd and 3, Henery kicks another field goal to give the Eagles a three-point advantage.
The Cowboys get the ball back and use five plays aided by two huge 35- and 36-yard completions to Bryant and Witten. Romo then finds Dez on a fade (unstoppable, stop trying) for six-yards and the lead, 31-27. Facing a 2nd and 7 on their own 44, Brown fumbles the ball and it's picked up by Morris Claiborne who runs it back 50-yards for another score. Cowboys up 38-27 with under four minutes to play.
The next Eagles' drive stalls as they fail to pick up a 4th and 13. In Cowboys' fashion, they can't close it out because Murray runs backwards and the Eagles will get possession with 53 seconds on the clock. Demaris Johnson returns the Cowboys' punt for 98 yards and a touchdown with 31 seconds left to make it 38-33. Foles tries for a two-point conversion that is snuffed out. Then Henery attempts an onside kick but good ol' reliable Witten answers the call. Romo kneels and this barn-burner is over, Cowboys win it 38-33.