Tony Romo Abandons the Run and Any Chance of Victory


Sep 15, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) throws a pass as Kansas City Chiefs outside linebacker Justin Houston (50) during the first half at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Jerry Jones stripped the wrong person of play calling duties this offseason.  The Dallas fans cry for a commitment to the run was supposed to be answered by the seasoned run first mentality of Bill Callahan.  Unfortunately coach Callahan ran into the same veto power

that Jason Garret has run into for the past few seasons. Tony Romo. Today it cost them a game.

Call it a trap game if you want, I see it as just the same old script. Click here and will you see my argument for it.  Also, if you want to see my prediction for this game click here. This defeat sits squarely one person, your newly minted $100 million quarterback. The same quarterback that said he had figured out an arm motion adjustment in the off-season that was supposed to improve his game. That makes no difference if your feet and hips are in terrible position when throwing the ball in a game deciding drive in the 4th quarter.  It also boggles the mind when this veteran quarterback can’t see Dez Bryant begging for him to notice the one 1 on 1 coverage in the Red Zone.  Instead Romo decides to change the play and attempt some convoluted bubble screen with an unproven, untrustworthy rookie in Terrance Williams. Are you starting to see it?

Let’s dig deeper into Romo’s day. The Cowboys were only down one possession. One touchdown doesn’t call for you to abandon the run. Today, Romo decided that it did. In the 3rd quarter of a 1 point game, Romo handed it a grand total of 5 times. In the 4th quarter of a 1 point game, Tony Romo handed it a grand total of 0 times. In the pivotal drive that started with 6:43 Romo never once gave the option of running a chance. Now, some of you may say that the run wasn’t working and you may be right, but only to a certain degree. The threat of the run keeps the defense honest. Let me prove it.

If you look back when the Cowboys ran back to back running plays today, you see an interesting pattern. When the Cowboys ran back to back running plays they were able to get big chunks in the passing game the very next play. You see it’s the threat of running that opens up the passing game. The whole off-season focus was on Romo being more involved in the game plan. You see now why coaches coach and players play. Romo believes he can only make a difference when the ball is in his hands. What Romo needs to understand is how to set up the game for his arm to make a difference. If he just sits back and throws it every time, the defense is going to sag back into pass coverage and eventually pick him off. When Romo abandoned the run, he abandoned any hope of winning this game. Click here to view a clip of Bill Parcells coaching a young Tony Romo, Parcells words for Romo still ring true today.

I can’t leave on that note. Cowboy fans have no fear. Your team is not doomed. For the most part everyone came out healthy; we saw the push Anthony Spencer gives the burst Lance Dunbar provides and the muscle that Brian Waters add. The Cowboys are 1 and 1 and right where they usually are. Want some real concern; see your Giants and Redskins fans.

Do you have questions or comments regarding Dallas area sports?  You may be included in the next weekly mailbag. Follow Justin on twitter @justinsopinion