5 Options for Tony Romo’s New Year’s Resolution
Dallas Cowboys: Tony Romo's 5 Potential New Year's Resolutions
Tony Romo has been up to the typical Tony Romo shenanigans recently and simply needs to straighten up his act. The Dallas Cowboys’ elite-level quarterback has long been known as one of the best in the NFL, except when the calendar turns to December. When the wins matter the most, Romo has not been historically able to lead his team to the Promised Land.
In each of the last two seasons, the Cowboys missed the playoffs as a result of losing the final game of the season. Romo’s performances in those games were fairly poor as he was bested by his quarterbacking counterparts, Eli Manning and Robert Griffin III. In those two games combined, Romo tallied just over 500 passing yards and four touchdowns, but also added four interceptions, making life much harder on his defense.
For all of the flak that the Dallas defensive unit has taken in 2013, Romo’s nine interceptions thrown this season take a toll on the opposite side of the game. Every time the defense has to go back out on the field with little rest, the likelihood of giving up a touchdown is increased. Although much of the defensive struggle has to be blamed on the unit themselves and their coordinator, Monte Kiffin, Romo could help his teammates out by keeping them off the field.
Finally, Romo’s playoff struggles are not much of a secret either as the eight-year veteran has only managed to win a single postseason game in his career. The 13-3 Dallas Cowboys of 2007 seemed to have everything going for them, but another mediocre day for Romo resulted in an early exit. This kind of performance is a sad motif for Cowboys fans to have watched over the years.
With all of his late-season and postseason struggles, there has to be things Romo can work on to try to turn his clutch time performances around. As such, it is time to start the slideshow of five options for Tony Romo’s New Year’s resolutions to help make him a better player. Click on the “Next” button above to get started.
Demand More from His Team
I know I already laid part of the blame for the defense’s issues on Romo’s turnover problem, but in all reality, defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin has struggled to pull his unit together. If the offense did not have the pressure of needing to score huge points each week in order to give the team a chance to win, Romo might not be facing a one game deficit in the division with only two games left to play. Romo needs to demand that the team around him step up and give him the support that he and the Cowboys’ fans deserve.
Make Smarter Decisions
The interceptions and fumbles are certainly an issue as Romo continues to rack up the turnovers. He needs to settle down and make wiser choices. When the play is not there, throw the ball away; when the pocket is collapsing, get out. Simply choosing to play more conservatively will help both Romo and his team to be on the field longer, giving them more chances to get down the field and into the end zone.
Stay Calm in the Clutch Moments
Romo has been the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde of clutch moments in the past. Granted, he does have 12 game-winning drives in the past three seasons, but he lacks the poise it takes to really finish off the important games. A calm, cool and collected Romo could send the Cowboys to the playoffs or advance them to another round.
Trust the Run Game
Despite only starting 12 of the 14 games this season, the Cowboys’ running back DeMarco Murray is only 23 yards shy of 1,000 rushing yards on the season. His strong performance is not unexpected as he has been one of the better tailbacks in the league since his breakout in 2011. Romo and Jason Garrett need to rely on the run game to set up the pass. In 2013, Romo has handed the ball off 295 times – least in the NFL – while throwing it nearly twice as often with 513 pass attempts. When you have a strong run game, you have to trust it will work. If the Cowboys had believed in this, they could have run the clock out against the Green Bay Packers last week and would not have lost.
When in Doubt, Pass to Witten
While most would be tempted to say that the smartest pass for Romo to make is to his big, star receiver, Dez Bryant, he really needs to use Jason Witten as often as possible. Witten trails only Bryant in yards per game, which is to be expected as the tight end’s routes are not as deep as the wide receiver’s. Nevertheless, Witten should be Romo’s go-to man when he is in trouble. Witten’s 6-5, 257 pound frame allows him to muscle away corners and safeties and his speed allows him to burn linebackers, giving him the advantage to get open, even if just for a few yards. Romo should always look to Witten when in times of need.