Tony Romo strikes again. The Dallas Cowboys completed the biggest collapse in franchise history on Sunday, giving up a 24-point lead in a 34-30 loss to the Detroit Lions. The Cowboys started out hot with Romo throwing three touchdown passes and Dallas playing absolutely stifling defense. Then Romo threw three second-half interceptions, two of which were returned for touchdowns. Gut-wrenching is the ultimate understatement for this Cowboys collapse.
Romo is the most inconsistent quarterback in NFL history. To elaborate, no other pro passer has ever been so good at times and then so bad just moments later. Romo has now gone from goat to champ and back in a matter of four weeks and the Cowboys remain a .500 team.
Not all of the blame can be thrown at Romo, though. Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett should be just as chastised for not running the ball when his team led the entire ballgame. There is no excuse for Romo throwing the ball on the first play of a drive when Dallas leads by three with four minutes to play. That is simple inexcusable.
This game is much more than a loss; these types of collapses are mentally demoralizing to a football team. The Cowboys aren’t the most mentally tough team to begin with; Romo is Exhibit A. This contest will truly be a tough one to overcome. Having a bye week won’t help the emotional toll this game takes on Dallas, either. The bye comes at a great time as far as injuries are concerned as the Cowboys are depleted on both sides of the ball. However, an extra week off will wear on Dallas after such a disappointment.
For all the talk about Romo being a leader after two, painfully tough victories, he will have to show it more than ever over the next two weeks of practice. Being the guy who gets this team back on track will be a huge test for Romo with no real game for two weeks, especially when that next game is on the road against the New England Patriots. It’s now or never for Romo and the Cowboys. If Dallas collapses the rest of this season, the “championship window” the Cowboys faithful believe in will close for good.