It’s OK to Call Dallas Cowboy Tony Romo “Clutch”


Nov 9, 2014; London, UNITED KINGDOM; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) reacts in the fourth quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL International Series game at Wembley Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The QB everyone loves to hate, has done it again. On Sunday night, Tony Romo proved his “clutchness” for the 27th time, by coming back to win against division rival New York Giants. Romo was 18-26 for 275 yards. He had 4 TDs and no picks earning a 143.4 passer rating. ESPN and national radio almost blew a gasket in trying to cover this strange and unexplainable story.

“How could a choke-artist deliver like this?”

“How could he look so calm?”

“Is this a turning point in Tony Romo’s career?”

Since 2006,Tony Romo has more game-winning drives than Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, or anyone else currently playing QB in the NFL. The man always associated with choking is actually the most clutch. It’s interesting how everyone loves to categorize players with one neat and tidy label – facts be damned.

Can Tony Romo choke? Of course. When the Cowboys are ahead, he has a history of turning the ball over in late-game situations. We can’t ignore that.

Nov 23, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) looks to pass against the New York Giants during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

Can Romo be clutch? Obviously. His 27 game winners are more than anyone else right now. He has 23 official comeback wins (when losing in the 4th or OT) to go along with that too. These are impressive facts that can’t be ignored.

You see, Tony Romo is both men. Why is that so hard to comprehend for some people? I’m the first person to admit that I get nervous when Romo tries something late in the game when the Cowboys are holding a narrow lead. His track record makes me nervous. I can’t ignore the facts, can I?

I also can’t ignore that when trailing, Romo has proven to be one of the very best in crunch time. The world just isn’t that black and white and neither is Romo.

Over the years Romo has had some pretty bad defenses too. Most QBs can get away with playing conservatively with a lead, and then placing the onus on the defense. Romo rarely could. He was pressing to make more plays and sometimes it came back to bite him. A bad defense certainly doesn’t absolve Romo of blame but it needs to be considered.

Every game is different, every play is different, the amount of blame/credit is different.

More from Sports Dallas Fort-Worth

The comeback Sunday night in New Jersey doesn’t really change a thing. Romo didn’t do it all by himself. He had great pass-blocking, ever-grinding receiver targets, and a strong run game. His defense that struggled most of the day even stepped up in the end.

It’s neat and tidy to label people because then we can then turn off our brains and just go with it. We don’t need the truth to get in the way. That’s why if you listen to your average sports show or talk to a fan of another team, they have some pretty rough analysis of Tony Romo and his sad career.

They stopped thinking a long time ago. They are believing what they want to and aren’t interested in facts.

He has to be one of the other, right?

Nov 23, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) passes against the New York Giants during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. The Cowboys defeated the Giants 31-28. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

Even on Monday, Romo was labeled as a QB who takes a lot of risks and makes a lot of turnovers. The reality is he has one of the best TD to INT ratios in football. He really doesn’t throw many interceptions. People just think so because they want to (and ESPN goes out of the way to focus on it).

Romo is Clutch.

Romo Chokes.

Romo is many things. The Romo-apologists are wrong and the Romo-haters are wrong. Romo has won big games and lost big games. The wins and losses have rarely been solely on him. It’s ok. He doesn’t need to be categorized. The Cowboys are 8-3, DeMarco Murray is leading the NFL in Rushing, Romo has never been better, and the coaching staff “gets it”. Be thankful and enjoy the ride…And stop it with the labels.