Monday morning quarterback
Dallas Cowboys fans can pretend but Romo-land has no yellow brick road
So the Cowboys are now 8-6, after a Saturday night feast on another patsy and six days after losing a 12-point lead with 5:41 left against the New York Giants. Everyone will pretend that everything is right in Romo-land for the next week as Jerry Jones' beleaguered 'Boys rolled to a 28-0 lead over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Only it's not. Going 23 of 30 for 249 yards and three touchdowns against a Tampa Bay team that's lost eight straight doesn't change anything for a Cowboys squad that is poised to throw away the playoff destiny it now holds in its own hands.
Yes, the QB who theatrically throws his hands in the air like a symphony maestro and gestures angrily at receivers whenever a pass falls incomplete is just too much of a good teammate for his own good.
You don't get more classic Romo than the guy who showed up for this 31-15 win on the NFL Network. This is a quarterback who excels at piling up pretty stats against the also rans. When the pressure is light, expect Romo to look flawless. That's his M.O. and this 31-year-old with one career playoff victory and Candice Crawford in his bed is more than satisfied with his position in the NFL pantheon.
He made that clear in a postgame NFL Network set visit that illustrates a major reason why the Romo Cowboys will never win Troy Aikman and Michael Irvin big.
For Romo doesn't burn to win at all costs. He likes to rationalize, to explain why his amount of winning is enough.
"Only so many teams go out and do what the Packers do," Romo said, attempting to explain the up-and-down nature of the 'Boys to Deion Sanders and Marshall Faulk. "You're going to win your share, you're going to lose your share."
Is this an NFL starting quarterback or the coach of an AYSO six-year-old team?
You win some and you lose some? Can you imagine Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers ever saying that? And since when do the Dallas Cowboys (the franchise of five Super Bowl wins pre-Romo) look at themselves as underdogs, staring up in envy at those real powers like the Green Bay Packers?
Tony Romo plays for the richest team in the NFL and he wants to pretend like he's still back at Eastern Illinois, thrilled to see what it's like to go up against Kansas State.
Romo is still losing more than his share in December (up to 8-12 career in the month now with the Bucs win) and the playoffs (1-3), but what does it matter? He has great Novembers. Get off his back, guys.
Romo doesn't burn to win at all costs. He likes to rationalize, to explain why his amount of winning is enough.
The unbelievable postgame wasn't done there however. For Romo also managed to drop in a "No one's perfect" and slide in the notion that his real problem this year hasn't been throwing away games with interceptions (see the Jets and Lions), it's the fact that he's taken too much blame for others' mistakes.
Yes, the quarterback who theatrically throws his hands in the air like a symphony maestro and gestures angrily at his receivers whenever a pass falls incomplete is just too much of a good teammate for his own good. Miles Austin and Dez Bryant must have a field day with his stuff behind closed doors.
When Sanders offers to make a bet with Romo that requires the Cowboys to make the NFC Championship Game, you can almost see the quarterback's head straining on national TV. NFC Championship Game? That would take two playoff wins. What the hell is Prime Time talking about? Can't everyone just be happy if I get the team into the playoffs — we were 7-6.
Romo could just as easily go 0-2 as 2-0 in the Cowboys season ending NFC East double dip against Philadelphia and the Giants. Even if Dallas does eke into the playoffs, no one in their right mind would expect it to beat New Orleans or San Francisco, let alone Green Bay.
It's going to be awfully hard for Jones to call this season a success, to tout year one and a half of Jason Garrett (the coach the owner long hungered to anoint) as anything but a series of disappointments. And then Romo will be 32 next year, with the Cowboys farther from a championship than when he first took over.
But hey, everyone cannot win big. What do you want? He doesn't play for the Green Bay Packers.