By now, everybody and their dog has seen a thousand headlines reading something like “Jerry Jones Takes Shot at Tony Romo” or “Jerry Says the Only Difference Between the Giants and Cowboys is Eli Manning” but none of that is true. Anyone who reads my work regularly knows that I’m no fan of the Dallas Cowboys’ egotistic owner, but he’s not at fault this time. However, his comments should still make the headlines, but for a different reason.
No matter how good or bad the Cowboys really are, Jerry will always say his team is contending for a Super Bowl and expectations for a world title are present every season. That’s fine; every team should believe it can win the big one every year. Otherwise, there’d be no reason to play the game, much less a 17-week season.
Jones didn’t think his team would dominate the NFC East this year, but he did believe the Cowboys could and would get hot at the right time and make a serious playoff run.
“Just like the Green Bay Packers were last year, in a different way, they’re a real inspiration of, frankly, what I had hoped that we were going to be, and that is a team that had played, had good days and bad days, but then near the end, really took off on a run and then really made improvement,” Jones said. “They did it, and we didn’t. We went the other way.”
Truer words were never spoken. The Cowboys had a golden opportunity to possibly finish the season 12-4 and 11-5 for sure, but failed to do so. The Cowboys were 7-4 following a Thanksgiving win over the Miami Dolphins that capped a four-game winning streak. From there, Dallas was in the driver’s seat with five games left, but fell off the wagon by losing five of its last six games.
The stage was set and the lights were on the Cowboys and Jerry’s bunch flat out choked.
“I don’t know that we would have been competing, had we gotten in the playoffs, at the level the Giants are,” Jones said. “I thought Romo was competing at a level that would have given us that opportunity, but the rest of us need to play better and get better before we can be really jelling the way the Giants are.”
See?! Jerry didn’t take a shot at Romo! Instead, he actually praised Romo and said that everybody else in Dallas wasn’t at his level. C’mon, man…even a big-time Jerry hater like me can see that!
Here’s exactly what Jones said that’s being blown way out of proportion:
“I don’t want to take anything away [from the Giants] but the big difference was Eli came up here and started what seemed like a pretty significant [stretch],” Jones said. “But the quarterback play with Eli was the huge difference. But I was pretty impressed with how they’ve defense played the last three or four ball games.”
In case you haven’t noticed, Jerry has a Texas-sized man crush on Romo. He’s not going to blame his quarterback for anything, even if it’s actually Romo’s fault. How was that, in any way, a shot at Romo? Exactly – it wasn’t.
“We’ve got to look at the whole picture and make sure we don’t compromise things because, again, I’m more into not squandering the prime years of Romo,” Jones said.
Case closed, man. Jerry Jones is bound and determined that Romo will win a title in Dallas, so the Cowboys need to build around him. The latter part of that is the Gospel truth; the Cowboys need a better defensive line, secondary and depth on the offensive line. Until Dallas improves in those areas, it doesn’t matter who’s playing quarterback for the Cowboys.
Eli Manning is a better quarterback than Tony Romo, but Jerry Jones didn’t say that and he doesn’t believe it. If I can see that Jerry didn’t take a shot at Romo, then anybody should. Jones needs a reality check in that the Cowboys aren’t going to win a Super Bowl until he brings in some better players in the secondary and at defensive end to say the least. This team needs a reality check in that it needs to play better and not “squander” opportunities to be great.
Follow Jeric Griffin on Twitter @JericGriffin