Romotown: Wittsville USA

The Detroit Lions did everything they could – and more – to defeat my beloved Dallas Cowboys, and for nearly the entire game it seemed almost certain they would. But as he has done so many times before, the great Tony Romo saved the day, hitting Jason Witten for the game-winning TD with 18 seconds remaining to give Dallas the 28-27 victory.

Bradie James and Terrence Newman, who ran their mouths all week about how they were going to shut down Lions QB Jon Kitna, did nothing whatsoever to slow him or his team down in the least.  It was an embarassing day for the entire Cowboy defense, but just like they bailed out the offense in Buffalo when Romo had six turnovers, Romo returned the favor in Detroit.

Sure, there were several key plays (Hanson’s missed chip shot FG, the Romo fumble a Lion defender inadvertently kicked right to Kyle Kosier, and more) that could have been considered luck, but it’s always the truly great teams who seem to benefit from such timely fortune.  It happened with the Patriots against both the Eagles and the Ravens, and here it happened with the Cowboys against the Lions.

With each passing week, a NE-DAL rematch at the Super Bowl in Glendale looks more likely.  Fate seems intent on it.


Kings of the NFC Hill…for now

My beloved Dallas Cowboys prevailed 37-27 in their showdown with the Green Bay Packers for NFC supremacy, and in the process, Tony Romo wrested away the title of NFC’s best quarterback away from his childhood idol Brett Favre.

Seldom-seen Packers backup QB Aaron Rodgers made a game out of what was headed for an almost certain blowout at the time Favre left the game, with the double-whammy of an injured right elbow and separated left shoulder.  But Romo was relentless in his aerial assault, bouncing back from a T.O.-caused end zone interception to close out the Packers on the next drive.

I still worry about our defense running hot and cold from one series to the next – especially on third and long plays – but the only team in the NFL clearly better than Dallas at this point is New England.  And if the Patriots continue to play like they did against the Eagles last week, the Cowboys just might be able to knock them off if they have a rematch in the Super Bowl.

For now, the Cowboys have four regular season games left against four opponents who appear to be easily beatable at this point, but they need to keep the petal to the metal and close them out to run the table at 15-1.  Even though they beat Green Bay last night, the Packers also have an easy remaining schedule, so Dallas cannot afford any slip-ups if they want to ensure home field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs.

Meanwhile, Romo has already shattered the franchise single-season record for TD passes.  After four more games, he just might have lapped the field.

Bring on the Packers!

This is truly becoming an historic season for my beloved Dallas Cowboys. They currently sit at 10-1 for the first time in this storied franchise’s history, after feasting on the New York Jets for Thanksgiving in a 34-3 rout. Tony Romo has tied the franchise record for most TD passes in a single season, which he should go on to shatter with five games remaining. But even with all this history being made, they still face challenges ahead, not the least of which is the upcoming showdown with the 10-1 Green Bay Packers for NFC supremacy.

As great as the Cowboy defense looked yesterday, they are going to have their hands full – and then some – trying to slow down Brett Favre. This is the game of the year, which in all likelihood will determine home field advantage for the NFC playoffs, so both teams will have to bring their best effort to Texas Stadium next Thursday. It should be a classic…I only hope Favre 2.0 (Romo) will outduel his childhood hero. The time has come for the torch to be passed.

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My beloved Dallas Cowboys are now 9-1, thanks almost entirely to the best game yet by Terrell Owens during his two seasons with the team. T.O. caught all four of Tony Romo’s touchdown passes and accounted for 60% of Romo’s passing yards in a truly transcendent performance.  But every last bit of it was needed – and then some – as the hated rival Washington Redskins kept coming time after time, led by their emerging star quarterback Jason Campbell.

Campbell is getting better every game, and just might have surpassed Donovan McNabb and Eli Manning as the second-best QB in the NFC East.  But as good as he’s getting, he’s still not as great as the fantastic Tony Romo.  Every so often, Romo has one of these games where he starts out playing poorly and seems like he’s going to have a terrible performance, yet he always manages to turn it around and make it an excellent game by the end.  He never ceases to amaze.  But this game, T.O. deserved the spotlight.

The Jets roll into town in a few days for Thanksgiving, and what seemed like a virtual bye week now suddenly appears to be more of a challenge, after New York upset the Pittsburgh Steelers yesterday.  The Cowboys had better show up to play, or they’ll be real turkeys.

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Providing Romotivation

Tony Romo continued his brilliance by passing for four TDs in engineering a 31-20 win that, for all intents and purposes, cliched the NFC East title and relegated the rival New York Giants to competing for a Wild Card berth. Romo’s stellar play is great news for all Cowboy fans, but has proven even more meaningful for me on a personal level.

As I’ve mentioned before in this blog, I was laid off from my job back in June, and remain unemployed five months later. To say it’s been tough would be a massive understatement. With each passing week, I find it harder and harder to pick myself up and dust myself off. Other than the ongoing support of family and friends, and my faith in the Lord, the only thing that has kept me going have been the fantastic performances week in and week out by Tony Romo. He never quits. He never takes his foot off the gas, no matter how dire the situation (remember Buffalo?). He’s truly been an inspiration to me, and has provided me with that extra motivation needed to absorb five months worth of repeated rejection. My ego has been sacked dozens of times, but Romo keeps inspiring me to come back to play another day.

Thanks for giving me a reason to smile and helping me focus on the ultimate goal, Tony!

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We Don’t Need No Stinking Helmet!


Jason Witten’s a man…and he’s not even 40! His 53-yard catch after being virtually decapitated by a pair of Eagle defenders epitomized both this game and the Cowboys season to date. When Witten made the catch, the game was already over, for all intents and purposes. It was the fourth quarter and Dallas had a beyond comfortable 21-point lead, yet here is their starting tight end absorbing a brutal double hit that would have jarred the ball loose from about 95% of the other receivers in the NFL — but instead of the ball, it was his helmet that flew off. Now at that point, about 99% of all other PLAYERS in the NFL would have gone down quickly or scurried to the sidelines to avoid exposing their unprotected head to further violent collisions. Not Witten. Not these Cowboys.

It was, in my opinion, the single finest total team effort from start to finish by the Cowboys yet this season. Tony Romo was one interception away from absolute perfection, T.O. took advantage of numerous opportunities to spread his wings in front of the angry Philly crowd, and the offensive line absolutely dominated the previously-touted Eagle front seven. Bring on the Giants!!!

Middies Leave Irish Shipwrecked

After 43 straight losses dating back to before the JFK assassination, Navy finally righted their ship and torpedoed the Flailin’ Irish in triple overtime. Notre Dame could have won the game in regulation, had the world’s most brilliant offensive strategist, Charlie Weis, chosen to kick a 40-yard field goal with less than a minute to play. But Weis is much smarter than us mere mortals and our flawed “conventional wisdom.” Why win the game in regulation, when a failed 4th and 8 attempt could send the game into overtime?

Then, Weis once again proved his superior offensive intellect by calling a run up the middle against a stacked line on a two-point attempt that needed to be converted in order to force a fourth overtime.  Most other humans probably would have attempted a pass or outside run, but Weis instead relied upon his infallible offensive genius to catch the opponent off guard by losing the game…THIS year.  Don’t you see?  It’s all a set-up for next year’s game!  BRILLIANT!!!

I, for one, look forward to the start of another 43-game winning streak in 2008!

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