Polarizing QB Tony Romo: Time For Dallas to Move On?

There were boos in Texas Stadium Sunday and they had nothing to do with Halloween being a few days away either. Romo commented, “I would have booed us too.” Well hate to be the messenger Romo, but the boos weren’t for the team…they were for you! This is a case where you should take it personal.

Is Romo keeping the Dallas Cowboys from becoming a winning team?  That question was being debated today by NFL talking heads. At some point, doesn’t Romo have to be held accountable for his turnovers? Some fans will point to his ability to lead a comeback and his amazing numbers at the end of the game while others will point to the 4 interceptions that put the Cowboys in the hole early.

Last week in beating the Panthers, I pointed out in my blog that Romo finally had a game with no INTs. ROMO  But against the Giants, Romo returned to the Romo who makes even the most loyal Romo fan swear him off. Or just swear in general.

It was certainly a strange game with the Giants, where we saw a horrible start by Dallas followed by a remarkable come back that almost resulted in a victory that would be talked about for a long time in the future. Instead we are left to focus on what went wrong in this one.

Romo had 437 yards passing while Dallas couldn’t even manage 20 yards rushing in the absence of RB DeMarco Murray. Romo passed 62 times mostly because the Cowboys found themselves in a big hole in the first quarter led by Romo’s turnovers. Witten and Austin had monster games as they combined to catch 27 passes for 300 yards.

Defense Not the Whipping Boy Any Longer:

Have to give the defense credit for limiting the Giants to mostly FGs after the Cowboys offense set the Giants up. Eli Manning was kept in check with only 192 yards passing which normally would have been good enough to win. Last year often the defense was to blame for losses however they can’t be blamed for this one.

ROMO TD/INT Ratio:

So far this year in 7 games, Romo has thrown 13 INTs and only 9 TDs. Throwing more INTs than TDs is a real red flag for QBs in the NFL. Most the time teams lose when their QBs are on the wrong end of the INT/TD ratio. Last season every team with a QB who had more INTs than TDs, had a losing record.

Four other QBs in the NFL have thrown more INTs than TDs this year. Two of the QBs are rookies and 3 out of 4 are on teams who have lost much more often than won. The exception to that rule is Dolphins rookie QB Tannehill (4 TDs/6 Ints) who has the Dolphins with a winning record now. His play has improved a great deal since the beginning of the season. Soon I think his ratio becomes in favor of TDs.

The other 3 QBs are Cassel (Chiefs), Newton (Panthers) and Weeden (Browns).

What jumps out is that all the other QBs with more INTs than TDs, are very inexperienced compared to Tony Romo. Romo has too much experience to be playing like he has been playing. The INTs are very rookie like where a young QB is trying to read defenses and gets confused at times. Forgivable for a rookie but not a veteran like Romo.

Last year in the 2011 season, Romo only threw 10 INTs the whole year with 31 TDs. That should put it in perspective just how off he has been so far.

Turnover problem:

The Cowboys are worst in the NFC in give away/take away ratio with a dismal -11. The only team worse than them in the entire NFL are the Chiefs. Leading the way are Romo’s 13 INTs which are the most of any NFC QB. As you might guess, teams that turn it over more than take it away tend to lose.

Bench Romo?

Yes. It’s time to move on.

Sorry Romo loyalist but when any player is performing this poorly a coach must play the next guy in order to not only give the team a better chance to win but send an important message that everyone (even Romo) must earn their spot every week. Would the Cowboys tolerate a kicker who was missing FGs more often than making them? Of course not.

It’s not writing him off because he may put it together later in the season. Watching a game could be good for him and good for the offense too. It’s time for Jason Garrett to send a message to Romo and the entire team. Has Jason got the guts to do it? Don’t count on it.

When asked if Jason thought about benching Romo he said absolutely not. When asked why in the name of winning football games not, he said,

“Just watching him play football for the last five years,” Garrett said. “He’s an outstanding football player and I think everybody saw that. He did a great job of overcoming a lot of different things in this game. We became one-dimensional because of their commitment to stop the run, and I thought he did a great job giving us a chance to win the game at the end.”

Garrett evidently loves him some Romo kind of like T.O. “that’s my quarterback” in tears. Remember that? This fan has seen enough INTs this year to last me a lifetime and think it’s time for Dallas to try to win without Romo.

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