Romo Needs to Play


If Tony Romo is healthy, then he should be starting for the Cowboys. Who’s with me? Anybody? (crickets) Come on people! Sports are not supposed to work this way. A franchise player is not supposed to lose his job because he missed a few games due to injury!

When Tyron Smith’s back stopped barking at him the Cowboys put him back in. Same with Dez Bryant, if he’s healthy he is back on the field. So why is it different with Tony? You say, “Because they are winning without him.” Well they won both games that Tyron did not play and all of those that Dez missed. Yet both those players were immediately granted their positions back because they are better than their back-ups. Guess what? So is Tony.

One thing we know about the NFL, you build a team from the inside out. After years of talking about it, the Cowboys have finally done this. They have the best offensive line in football and that is why they are 6-1. They made a perfect choice with their first round draft pick too, Ezekiel Elliott is like Demarco Murray only better because he is younger.

Romo should be back under center when he’s healthy

So what we have here is a reincarnation of the 2014 team. Anybody remember how Tony did that year? HIs 113.2 passer rating ranked him No.1 in the NFL…Number One! He completed 69.9% of his passes that year, also No.1 in the NFL. He was No.1 in touchdown percentage and yards per attempt too. Meantime Demarco Murray led the league in rushing yards and attempts and yards per game. These three things go hand in hand…in hand. Good line play equals good running lanes. Good running game equals good quarterback play.

Tony has done everything that Dak is doing now, in fact he did it just two years ago when he was 34 years old. Some will say, “Why put him back in? He’s just going to get hurt again.” That could happen, in fact history says it will. If it does then you go to your back-up quarterback. Maybe you have heard of him, his name is Dak Prescott.

The experience Prescott has gained in the first seven weeks of the season is invaluable. However, it pales by comparison to the experience Romo has gained during his 13 years in the league. Tony sees more, he recognizes more and knows more than Dak.

As Parcells once said of young players, quarterbacks in particular, “They don’t even know what they don’t know.” And do you know how he will learn those things that he doesn’t know? By making mistakes. He will make them just as Tony did. He will learn from them just as Tony did too. But in a year where the Cowboys have the best record in the NFC at the half way point of the season, why take chances? Play the quarterback who knows what he knows. That is Tony Romo.

None of this is an indictment of Dak. He is awesome. He has done and unbelievable job. He is the future of the franchise. But even he has said publicly that this is Tony’s team.  He is not going to make a fuss if the Cowboys do what every other team does and that is to give the starter his job back when he is healthy.

I know you are going to bring up the Drew Bledsoe/Tom Brady example and you baseball people will harken back to the time ol’ Wally Pipp was replaced by Lou Gehrig. But do you know why we remember those examples? Because they are so rare. The vast majority times the starter, ala Tyron Smith and Dez Bryant, is put back into the line up when they are healthy. Why is it so different for Tony?

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John Rhadigan has called Texas home for nearly 25 years, having spent 11 years at NBC 5 as a sports reporter/anchor and 13 years as an anchor at Fox Sports SW. Rhadigan is the recipient of more than a dozen Emmy Awards for sports reporting and anchoring.